Interstellar Medium Postdoctoral Researcher - #0039954

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Wednesday, October 16, 2019
Archive Date: 
Wednesday, December 4, 2019
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Institution Classification/Type: 
Space Telescope Science Institute
Street Line 1: 
3700 San Martin Drive
United States of America
Job Announcement Text: 

Interstellar Medium Postdoctoral Researcher

Applications are invited for one or more postdoctoral research positions at the Space Telescope Science Institute. The successful applicant(s) will work on the Scylla project with Drs. Claire Murray (Scylla PI) and Karl Gordon on studies of interstellar dust and gas in the Magellanic Clouds and other low metallicity Local Group dwarf galaxies. The main project will be Scylla: a pure-parallel, multi-headed attack on dust evolution and star formation in galaxies observed as part of the ULLYSES HST Director’s Discretionary Time program (UV Legacy Library of Young Stars as Essential Standards). Scylla is a 500 orbit HST program that will obtain WFC3 near-ultraviolet to near-infrared imaging of fields in parallel with the ULLYSES observations. Scylla’s main goals are to (1) map the extinction curve and dust grain properties at high resolution in a diverse range of interstellar conditions; (2) constrain the multi-dimensional structure of gas in the LMC and SMC; and (3) measure the comprehensive star formation and chemical enrichment histories of nearby dwarf galaxies. The result will be an unprecedented view of star formation from the dusty ISM. This position will include collaborating with the full Scylla team, especially Dr. Kristen McQuinn (Rutgers) and Dr. Ben Williams (Univ. of WA). There will also be opportunities to work on other similar projects in other Local Group and nearby universe galaxies.

The postdoc(s) would work closely as part of the dynamic, welcoming, and inclusive ISM@STSCI group (​​) that includes Drs. Martha Boyer, Karoline Gilbert, Joshua Peek, Julia Roman-Duval, and a number of postdocs and graduate students. The ISM@ST group has broad scientific interests centered on the interstellar medium, from dust producing stars to the gas and dust in the interstellar and circumgalactic medium. This research will involve working with and, if possible, proposing for observations with Hubble, JWST, and ground-based facilities. Independent research in related areas will be encouraged and supported up to the 50% level pending satisfactory progress on the funding projects.

The successful applicants will benefit from the career mentoring program at STScI, interactions with the Johns Hopkins University research staff, and a stimulating work environment rich in colloquia, journal clubs, symposia, and learning opportunities related to the missions supported by STScI (HST, JWST, WFIRST).

Applicants must hold a Ph.D. degree in Astronomy, Physics, Planetary Science, or related fields at the start of the post-doctoral researcher position. Research experience in the areas of interstellar dust, molecular clouds, or ISM structure is desirable. Expertise in UV-optical-NIR photometry, numerical methods, or statistics, is a plus.

The positions are for two years, with a possible renewal for a third year subject to performance and availability of funds. The nominal start date is summer/fall 2020 but earlier start dates are possible. STScI, located on Johns Hopkins University Campus in Baltimore, Maryland, offers an excellent benefit package (including comprehensive healthcare and paid parental leave), competitive salaries, and a stimulating work environment. STScI’s pay for postdoctoral researchers is commensurate to the year of Ph.D. We especially welcome applications from women, minorities, veterans, LBGTQ+ people, and other members of underrepresented groups.

Prospective applicants must complete an on-line application through the link below:

The following materials are requested in a single PDF file: a brief cover letter detailing your research interests and relevant expertise, a curriculum vitae, a list of publications, and a summary of previous and current research (limited to 3 pages). Complete applications received by December 4, 2019, will receive full consideration. Also, applicants should arrange for three confidential letters of reference. Reference letters should be submitted by December 9, 2019 via the on-line application system. Questions regarding the application process can be sent directly to ​​.

STScI sees the diversity of our staff as a strategic priority in our desire to create a first-rate scientific community. We reflect that deep commitment in strongly encouraging women, minorities, veterans and disabled individuals to apply for these opportunities. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, STScI does not discriminate because of race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, or mental or physical handicap. Veterans, disabled or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process can contact us at ​​.

Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, December 4, 2019
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
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