Athena is the second large mission of the Cosmic Vision science program of the European Space Agency. Dedicated to the study of the Hot and Energetic Universe, Athena will carry a large aperture X-ray telescope, and two complementary focal plane instruments: the Wide Field Imager (WFI) and the X-ray Integral Field Unit (X-IFU). The X-IFU is a revolutionary instrument providing spatially resolved high resolution X-ray spectroscopy, with 2.5 eV spectral resolution over a field of view of 5 arcminute equivalent diameter. Thanks to the defocussing of the optics, it will also enable the observations of bright X-ray sources. It is developed under the scientific responsibility of the Institute of Astrophysics and Planetology of Toulouse (the Principal Investigator is D. Barret), and the technical authority of the French Space Agency (CNES). It includes contributions from a large international consortium spread over 13 countries in Europe, the United States and Japan. As leading institutions, IRAP and CNES have the responsibility to manage the instrument performance and provide a calibration plan. The job applications described herewith come in support of these tasks.
The applicant is expected to fulfil the following tasks:
- take part of the assessment of the scientific capability of the XIFU, e.g. run test cases on key scientific objectives
- assist the PI and performance team, with the support of the XIFU science advisory team, on consolidating performance requirements for X-IFU
- prepare for competing proposals for XRISM on the open time available to European scientists. XRISM/Resolve is a pathfinder to Athena/XIFU. This activity will train the team to work with high resolution X-ray spectral data. This will serve us to anticipate the needs for analysing X-IFU data, e.g. atomic data, analysis software, modelling techniques…
- prospect on novel data analysis techniques, e.g. hyperspectral data analysis
- prepare for the analysis of bright source observations
It is expected that the applicant spends between 30 and 50% of her/his time to carry out its own research and develop new collaborations with the IRAP team members.
The post is open to candidates of any nationality who hold a PhD. The applicants should have expertise in X-ray astronomy, have good programming skills.
The applicant will be hosted at IRAP, in the high energy group (GAHEC), but will also interact closely with members of the CNES team. The applicant is also expected with other members of the X-IFU Consortium. GAHEC gathers about ~100 personal in total, including support staff, technicians, engineers, PhD students and post-docs and about 30 permanent researchers from CNRS and the University Paul Sabatier. The group is also involved in current and future projects such as XMM-Newton, INTEGRAL, NuSTAR, Fermi, CTA.
The position is initially for one year and renewable for a further two years.
Applications should include a curriculum vitae, a publication list, a summary of previous research, and a statement describing your interest in the job. Two letters of recommendation shall also be added to the application. They shall be sent directly to Maëva Voltz (firstname.lastname@example.org).