The faculty of physics at the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) in Munich, Germany, is seeking a long-term staff scientist with an experienced background in computational fluid dynamics and high-performance computing (HPC). The position is available for a maximum of 10 years: 6 years at the A13 level ("Akademischer Rat auf Zeit") of the German civil service, followed by 4 years at the A14 level ("Akademischer Oberrat auf Zeit") if the position holder successfully completes habilitation at LMU within the first 6 years. These are junior group leader positions intended to train future professors and research leaders. LMU is one of the oldest universities in Germany and consistently ranked in the top three nation-wide; its Faculty of Physics has a storied history of hosting Nobel laureates, including Planck and Heisenberg.
The successful candidate is ideally an expert, or wishes to work towards becoming one, in theory and simulation in some subset of the following topics: climate modelling (of Earth, Solar System bodies or exoplanets), general circulation models (GCMs), dynamics of planetary (within the Solar System) and exoplanetary (beyond the Solar System) atmospheres. This staff scientist position is part of the inaugural "Chair of Theoretical Astrophysics of Extrasolar Planets" at the University Observatory Munich, which will start in August 2022 and will be led by Prof. Dr. Kevin Heng. The chair (an ecosystem of research groups) includes the planet formation groups of Prof. Dr. Barbara Ercolano and Prof. Dr. Til Birnstiel. Prof. Dr. Heng's group works in the theory, simulation and phenomenology of exoplanetary atmospheres, including radiative transfer, chemistry, climate modelling, Bayesian inference techniques and machine learning. It is part of the Origins Excellence Cluster (https://www.origins-cluster.de/) that unifies research activity in Munich.
The successful candidate will be an important part of a new working group on exoplanet GCMs that includes Ph.D student Can Akin, senior staff scientist Dr. Daniel Kitzmann and senior collaborators Prof. Dr. Volker Springel (Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics) and PD Dr. Klaus Dolag (University Observatory Munich). A key task of this working group is to develop the next generation of the THOR GCM (https://github.com/exoclime/THOR), including improving its algorithms and sub-grid modules, as well as facilitate the use of THOR within the exoplanet community. THOR is mostly written in the CUDA programming language and runs on NVIDIA GPUs. This working group will interact closely with the Mantis network on high-resolution spectroscopy of exoplanets led by Dr. Jens Hoeijmakers (Lund University). Eventually, the working group evolves into a research group led by the staff scientist. There is ample funding for computational resources, travel, page charges, etc, within the Heng chair. Overall, the research environment is intellectually rich, highly interdisciplinary and involves frequent interaction between theoreticians, observers and experimentalists.
Only applications that respect the following format will be reviewed: a cover letter (1 page; listing the applicant's email address and the names of three letter writers), a research statement of past, present and future activities (maximum of 5 pages), a CV (2 pages), a publication list (no limit, but longer is not always better) and a statement of teaching experience and philosophy (1 page), as well as three letters of recommendation that should be directly emailed to Kevin.Heng 'at' physik.lmu.de. Except for the letters, all components of the application should be merged into a single PDF file labelled "[last name].pdf", where [last name] should be replaced by the last name of the applicant (all lower case alphabets), and emailed to the same address. The application deadline is 31st January 2022 (Monday). The start date is negotiable.
A13/A14 appointments are elevated civil service positions ("Beamter") that come with health insurance benefits and comparatively high salaries in the German academic system. The minimum pre-tax salary is about 60,000 euros per year, depending on experience ("Stufe"); child benefits will slightly increase the annual salary. By German law, the exact post-tax salary depends on marital status and the number of children in the household (https://oeffentlicher-dienst.info/beamte/by/). The successful candidate has to be less than 35-years-old at the time of appointment. A13/A14 position holders are obliged to contribute to the teaching duties of the University Observatory Munich. Furthermore, they are allowed to compete for grants from the German Research Foundation (DFG). If DFG grants are procured, A13 and A14 position holders may co-supervise and supervise their own students/postdocs, respectively. LMU Munich is an equal opportunity employer (https://www.lmu.de/en/about-lmu/working-at-lmu/academic-careers/equal-op...).