ngVLA Calibration Research Associate

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Tuesday, February 6, 2018
Archive Date: 
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Institution Classification/Type: 
National Radio Astronomy Observatory
Department Name: 
Street Line 1: 
1003 Lopezville Rd
United States of America
Job Announcement Text: 

Position Summary

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory invites applications for a next-generation VLA (ngVLA) Calibration Research Associate. The preferred duty station will be the Domenici Science Operations Center in Socorro, NM, but Charlottesville, Virginia may be a possibility.  The successful applicant will work within the ngVLA project team, within the ngVLA Science Support IPT on detailed investigation of the calibration strategies and associated requirements for the ngVLA. 

The position is initially available for two years starting as soon as June 2018, with continuation contingent on progress and available funding.  Funding for the successful applicant to attend and present at domestic and international meetings will be available.

Job Duties Summary

The successful candidate will be an essential part of the ngVLA effort as the project prepares for the Astronomy 2020 Decadal Survey.   The primary focus of this scientific research associate position will be contributing to a high‐level study that develops a calibration strategy for the array in order to understand any implications for the hardware system architecture. Calibration strategies are required for phase/delay, gain, flux scale, polarization, and possibly other instrumental effects.

The calibration strategy will directly inform the array configuration and the system architecture and requirements. The study will include the derivation of associated hardware requirements that support the selected calibration strategy. This study is expected to be carried out in close collaboration with the configuration team and algorithmic development team at NRAO.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
The appointee will be expected to spend 75% of their time on duties directly related to calibration studies for the ngVLA, under the supervision of Dr. Bryan Butler. Those duties will include:

  • Evaluations of various calibration strategies to support the Level 0 Science Requirements.
  • Simulations of the effect of instrumental and atmospheric errors on the scientific performance of the array.
  • Selection and documentation of calibration strategies for phase/delay, gain/amplitude, flux scale, and polarization.
  • Derivation of hardware system requirements to support the selected calibration strategies.

The appointee will have the opportunity to use 25% of their time for their own independent research.  Independent research for this position is strongly encouraged and should contribute to radio astronomy, NRAO and ngVLA futures.

Minimum Education

PhD in astronomy or related field.

Minimum Experience

Observational astronomy, data analysis.

Preferred Experience

The ideal candidate will have a strong background in radio interferometry.  The ideal candidate will also be skilled at using python and CASA for data analysis and public tool creation, and have a strong record of independent research.

Included Benefits: 

In addition to competitive pay, NRAO provides excellent paid time off benefits (vacation and sick leave). Medical, dental and vision plans are effective first day of employment. NRAO’s retirement benefit contributes an amount equal to 10 percent of a qualified participant’s base pay. No contribution is required of the employee; we also offer an optional supplemental, tax-deferred plan for employee retirement contributions.

Application Deadline: 
Monday, April 2, 2018
Selection Deadline: 
Friday, June 1, 2018
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
Apply to Job
Attention To: 
Dr. Bryan Butler
Division Head - Array Science Center
National Radio Astronomy Observatory
Institution/Company Job ID or Reference Code: 
Inquiries About Job
Attention To: 
Dr. Bryan Butler
ngVLA Calibration Research Associate