Applications are invited for a PhD position within the exoplanet team at the University of Geneva to work on photometric observations of transiting exoplanets. The main focus of the PhD thesis will be to study the density of exoplanets by deriving their precise radii from light curve analysis of NGTS, K2 and TESS surveys and complementary follow-up observations.
The successful candidate is expected to contribute to the follow-up activities, and focus on retrieving the signatures of Super-Earth and Neptune-like planets with high-precision photometry. While the PhD project will be based on photometric observations, he/she will also participate in ongoing high-precision RV follow-up using CORALIE, HARPS and NIRPS. The successful candidate will be in charge to the transit modelling, identification of false positives, ranking and vetting of transiting candidates, coordination, execution and analysis of photometric observations carried out with EulerCam at the 1.2 m Euler telescope at La Silla observatory. He/She will also contribute to the activities of the NGTS transit survey and to DACE platform tools related to light curve analysis.
The Department of Astronomy of the University of Geneva offers a modern and vibrant work environment, with a wide range of activities including theory, numerical simulations, observations and instrumental developments in the domains of exoplanets, stellar physics, galactic dynamics, observational cosmology and high-energy astrophysics. The exoplanet team is especially well renown, with strong involvement in planet detection, the determination of the planet physical properties, the characterisation of planet atmospheres, and the development of an associated world-class instrumentation. We are also co-leading the Swiss-wide National Centre of Competence in Research (NCCR) PlanetS (http://nccr-planets.ch/), dedicated to the study of the origin, evolution, and characterisation of planets inside and outside our Solar System. The applicant will also have the opportunity to develop collaborations with members of PlanetS.
The applicant is required to have a Master in Astrophysics. Proficiency in Python programming is considered as a plus. This four-year PhD position is founded by Swiss National Science Foundation with a gross salary around 50,000 CHF a year. The position is available immediately and a rapid start by the student would be appreciated. The University is actively seeking to increase the numbers of women in physics and hence women are strongly encouraged to apply. Interested applicants should send (in a single pdf file) a curriculum vitae, academic transcripts, a motivation letter including information on skills and previous experience, names of people who can be contacted for a letter of recommendation, and the contact details to Prof. François Bouchy, University of Geneva, firstname.lastname@example.org, before 15th January 2020.