Postdoctoral Scholar - Time Domain - Department of Astronomy
The Department of Astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley seeks applications for a Postdoctoral Scholar to lead the development of software infrastructure and scientific algorithms for inference on time-series data from new and existing synoptic surveys. The work, conducted with a diverse and engaged set of individuals within Prof. Joshua Bloom’s group, is sponsored by a new software grant from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.
This position revolves around SkyPortal, an open-source project centered at Berkeley that enables collaborative management and analysis of time-domain sources and events. As the project begins to be adopted by leading surveys, the postdoctoral scholar will be responsible for developing SkyPortal to ensure that its scientific potential is realized worldwide—both by Bloom-group collaborators and others. The scholar will help to manage and grow the user community with an eye towards creating a long-term sustainable open-source project.
In addition to software development, a critical component of this position is the generation of original, scholarly scientific output that makes primary use of (and/or expands the capabilities of) SkyPortal. This may include algorithmic development in methodological areas such semi-supervised learning, unsupervised anomaly detection, explainable/interpretable AI, and forecasting. It may also include domain-specific efforts in gravitational wave followup, tidal disruption events, or variable stars.
This work may draw on cutting-edge research in statistics, computational science, time-domain astronomy, and deep learning, and is expected to lead to applications beyond astronomy. The collaboration has access to proprietary astronomical datasets and is building systems capable of ingesting, assimilating, and creating "new knowledge" from massive data streams expected from forthcoming projects, such as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF2). The collaboration also has access to large-scale computing facilities on campus, at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), and through cloud computing time donated by industry partners.
This work will be directed by Prof. Joshua Bloom in the Astronomy Department, but the position also calls for strong interactions with other senior members of the collaboration in other departments (particularly Dr. Stefan van der Walt, project lead, and Prof. Fernando Perez) and at the Berkeley Institute for Data Science. Experience and a demonstrated interest in working with graduate students is also encouraged. The strongest candidates will have demonstrated success in conducting original research in astronomy, statistics, machine learning (deep or otherwise) and should have a strong track record in building and maintaining Python computing codebases.
The position starting in fall of 2020 is for two years, full time, with renewal for a third year depending on availability of funds.
The position will be open until filled.
For more information about the position, including required qualifications and application materials go to https://aprecruit.berkeley.edu/JPF02472
The University of California, Berkeley is an AA/EEO employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status.