Time Domain Radio Astronomy Data Scientist for SKA construction Denys Wilkinson Building, Keble Road, Oxford

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
Archive Date: 
Wednesday, February 2, 2022
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Institution Classification/Type: 
Large Academic
University of Oxford
Department Name: 
Physics (Astrophysics)
Street Line 1: 
Denys Wilkinson Building
Street Line 2: 
Keble Road
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Job Announcement Text: 

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Research Assistant position in Time Domain Astrophysics with SK. The post is available initially for a fixed-term duration of 2 +1 years.

We are searching for a motivated researcher, whose expertise straddles across multiple traditional disciplines, covering modern time-domain astrophysics, high performance computing, and algorithm development, to join the team constructing the time domain (non-imaging) capabilities of the SKA. Our team will develop the machine that executes the pulsar survey on the SKA phase-I instruments, delivering one of the highest profile science goals of the SKA.

The team operates under the SAFe software development framework as determined by the SKA Observatory, with key elements being:

•    Agile, short-term objectives.

•    Continuous integration and deployment.

•    Commitment to high-quality tested code.

The successful applicant will join a team of experts in time-domain radio astronomy and software engineering at Oxford Astrophysics, and a broader team of collaborators in the UK (University of Manchester), Italy, India, Germany and elsewhere, responsible for SKA development. The role comes with reporting responsibilities and deadlines set by the SAFe development teams and the SKA Observatory.

We are particularly interested in applicants with experience in producing high quality software, aware of modern coding practices and modern software techniques, who also have a good understanding of the astrophysics. The successful candidate will demonstrate awareness of existing algorithms and techniques in the following areas of interest:

1.    Real time processing of streaming data for the discovery of pulsars and FRBs.

2.    Classification techniques for astrophysical and artificial signals (RFI), and real-time RFI mitigation in the time and frequency domain.

3.    Using hardware accelerators (FPGAs, GPUs) within real time processing pipelines.

The successful applicant will have responsibility to:

•         Design, develop, and test software for the time-domain capabilities of SKA and pathfinder telescopes.

•         Follow software development guidelines and adhere to the continuous integration practices, as laid out by our lead Software Engineer Dr Chris Williams.

•         Participate in the activities and requirements of the SAFe team.

•         Attend relevant SKA related meetings and present work.

•         Contribute ideas for new research projects.

•         Review and refine working hypotheses.

•         Adapt existing and develop new scientific techniques to meet the goals of the project.

•         Conduct independent research in the area of data processing for Pulsars and FRBs.

•         Collaborate in the preparation of scientific papers and publish the research in refereed journals.

•         Attend international conferences to promote your own research and that of the Oxford group.

•         Promote your work to the general public through active engagement.

Applicants should hold, or be very close to completion of, a PhD in physics or a related field, and ideally with a background in algorithm software development for time domain astrophysics.

Applicants should be able to demonstrate experience of high-quality software development in the C and/or C++ programming languages and how they have worked in a team towards a specified goal. They will have a publication record commensurate with their experience. The post-holder will have the opportunity to teach as part of their duties.

Only applications received before midday 10th January 2022 can be considered. You will be required to upload a supporting statement, CV and details of two referees as part of your online application. You should arrange for your two referee’s to send reference letters to [email protected] before the closing date.

Application Deadline: 
Monday, January 10, 2022
Selection Deadline: 
Monday, February 28, 2022
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
Apply to Job
Attention To: 
HR Team
University of Oxford
Department Name: 
Street Line 1: 
Clarendon Lab
Street Line 2: 
Parks Road
Zip/Postal Code: 
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Institution/Company Job ID or Reference Code: 
Inquiries About Job
Attention To: 
Prof. Aris Karistergiou