Research Scientist (Postdoc for the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph "IRIS" Project)

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Sunday, September 16, 2018
Archive Date: 
Sunday, October 14, 2018
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Institution Classification/Type: 
Bay Area Environmental Research Institute
Street Line 1: 
P.O. Box 25
Moffett Field
United States of America
Job Announcement Text: 

The Bay Area Environmental Research (BAER) Institute is seeking a postdoctoral Research Scientist for the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) project, within the Lockheed Martin Solar & Astrophysics Laboratory (LMSAL), located in Palo Alto, CA. More information on BAER Institute can be found at:

The employee will be part of the IRIS team (see for details) at LMSAL (which leads the IRIS mission and is also involved in Hinode, SDO and STEREO). For more information about the project, please contact Dr. Bart De Pontieu (LMSAL, or Dr. Juan Martinez Sykora (BAERI,

This position is initially for 2 years, but can be extended to 3 years or more.


The IRIS small explorer was launched successfully in June 2013 and is focused on studying the physics of the interface region between the photosphere and corona. The IRIS science investigation combines a high-resolution ultraviolet spectrograph with advanced numerical modeling to study which types of non-thermal energy dominate in the chromosphere and beyond, how the chromosphere regulates the mass and energy supplied to the outer solar atmosphere, and how magnetic flux rises through the solar atmosphere and powers flares and coronal mass ejections.

Duties and Responsibilities

The work will involve a subset or a combination of:

  1. Analysis of IRIS observations using artificial intelligence techniques, such as machine learning.
  2. Calculation of advanced numerical radiative MHD or multi-fluid simulations and comparison with IRIS (and other) observations.

Minimum Qualifications

Candidates should have a PhD (or expect to complete a PhD in the next 3 months) in data science, solar physics, plasma physics or a closely related field. The applicant is expected to have experience in either machine learning or numerical modeling.

Additional Considerations

Candidates with numerical modeling interest will have an opportunity to work with the Bifrost code and/or the newly developed multi-fluid code Ebysus.

Starting Salary

$78,000 to $88,000, depending on experience.

Application Instructions

Submit resumes, a one-page research statement, and two letters of reference to:

Application packages must be received by October 17, 2018.

Additional Details

The Bay Area Environmental Research Institute is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ancestry, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, medical condition, gender identity, protected veteran status, or any other legally protected status.

If you have a disability that requires accommodation, please contact Donna Turnley of the BAER Institute Human Resources Office at

The initial position is for a 2-year period.

Applicants who reside outside of the San Francisco Bay Area must be willing to relocate within commuting distance of LMSAL in Palo Alto, CA. We will reimburse up to $5,000 in relocation costs.


Pay Compensation
Salary Min: 
$78000.00 (USD)
Salary Max: 
$88000.00 (USD)
Included Benefits: 


The job benefits include medical, dental, vision, life, short-term and long-term disability insurance, a 403b defined contribution plan for which employer contributes 10% of gross salary, eligibility for participation in optional 403b tax-deferred annuity plan, 10 paid holidays, and a total of 3 weeks of vacation per year through accrual of 10 hours of vacation and 8 hours of sick-time per month.

Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, October 17, 2018
Selection Deadline: 
Wednesday, October 31, 2018
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
Apply to Job
Attention To: 
Donna Turnley
Human Resources Director
Bay Area Environmental Research Institite
Street Line 1: 
P.O. Box 25
Moffett Field
Zip/Postal Code: 
United States of America
(650) 447-7263
(650) 961-1126
Inquiries About Job
Attention To: 
Donna Turnley
IRIS Postdoctoral Research Scientist