Applications are invited for a postdoctoral position in optical/NIR survey science based at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to begin in the Fall of 2018. The successful applicant will collaborate with Prof. Keith Bechtol and other members of the LSST Project Commissioning Team on Science Validation of the LSST system. First light for the LSST Commissioning Camera is expected in 2020. The overall goal of Science Validation is to quantify the range of demonstrated performance of the as-built system by using a combination of on-sky data, informed simulations, and external datasets. To this end, the postdoctoral scholar will develop and implement tests of increasing sophistication to exercise LSST commissioning data in various scientific applications, diagnosis emergent issues, and inform technical optimization during early operations. Visits to the observatory in Chile, and/or other LSST Project sites may be needed to facilitate this work.
In addition, the postdoctoral scholar will be encouraged to develop an independent research program using precursor optical/NIR survey datasets. The position includes full access to data from DES and SDSS IV, as well as the opportunity to apply for telescope time with WIYN and SALT. All aspects of survey science will be considered in the search, with particular attention given to candidates with interests in astronomical probes of fundamental physics, including dark matter, dark energy, and multimessenger observations. The ideal candidate will be familiar with data analysis and statistical methods relevant for survey science, as well as knowledge of python, relational databases, shared code repositories, and parallel computing. Instrumentation experience is also a valuable asset.
The initial postdoctoral appointment is for two years, renewable up to three years. Applicants should have completed a PhD before the anticipated start date in Fall 2018.
To apply, please upload a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and brief statement of research interests to http://www.physics.wisc.edu/apply/bechtol-postdoc-2017/. You will be asked to provide the contact information for three individuals who can separately send letters of recommendation. The position will remain open until filled; however applicants are strongly encouraged to submit all materials (and to ensure that the three letters of recommendation are received) by 15 December 2017. Inquires regarding the position should be directed to Keith Bechtol (firstname.lastname@example.org).
UW-Madison is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. We promote excellence through diversity and encourage all qualified individuals to apply.