Software Research Positions for Rubin Observatory Science Collaboration Pipeline Support

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Tuesday, September 20, 2022
Archive Date: 
Tuesday, November 15, 2022
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Institution Classification/Type: 
Large Academic
Canadian Rubin Consortium
Various Locations
Various Locations
Job Announcement Text: 

The Canadian Rubin Consortium is offering five positions to work on pipeline development in Science Collaborations of the Vera C. Rubin Observatory, a telescope that is under construction in Chile, set to start scientific observations in 2024. The Canadian Rubin Fellows will be embedded in the Transient and Variable Stars (TVS) Science Collaboration, the Active Galactic Nucleus (AGN) Science Collaboration, the Galaxies Science Collaboration and the Solar System Science Collaboration (SSSC).

The appointees are expected to contribute to the success of the Vera C. Rubin Observatory Science Collaborations via the development of relevant software, pipeline development and data processing at the University of Toronto (research areas: TVS), Bishop’s University (AGN) and the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre (SSSC). Applicants can apply to all positions with one application - however please state which positions you wish to be considered for.

49% of the research time for each position will be directly related to pipeline development for the relevant science collaborations, and the remaining 51% will be devoted to scientific postdoctoral research.

Prospective candidates are encouraged to contact the individual hosts listed below for additional information on the relevant Rubin Science Collaborations before submitting their application, and to contact Prof. Renée Hložek ([email protected]) for information about the positions more generally.



The position at Bishop’s University will be focused primarily on AGN variability, including image differencing and alert pipelines for extreme variability events. Bishop’s University is located in Sherbrooke, Québec, and is a historic English-language university in the bilingual setting of the Eastern Townships region of Québec. The Department of Physics and Astronomy has particular strengths in astronomy and relativity. For more information, please contact Prof. John Ruan at [email protected].

The positions at the University of Toronto will focus on software pipeline development for the Rubin Transient and Variable Stars Collaboration with Prof. Maria Drout, and transient alert pipeline development for the Dark Energy Science Collaboration with Prof. Renée Hložek. The University of Toronto’s astronomy units, namely the David A. Dunlap Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics (DADDAA), the Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics and Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics (CITA) together host more than 150 staff and students in astronomy, who conduct a diverse research program across instrumentation, observations, computation and theory. The Dunlap Institute pursues groundbreaking astronomical research across the electromagnetic spectrum, through innovative approaches to instrumentation, data-driven science and observations, alongside a substantive commitment to outreach and training. Rated as having one of the highest standards of living in the world, Toronto offers a huge range of indoor and outdoor pursuits, outstanding food and music, and a vibrant and diverse cultural community. For more information, please contact Prof. Maria Drout at [email protected].

The position with the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory (DAO) of the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory will be hosted by the University of Victoria, with office space and compute resources provided by the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre. This position will focus on pipeline development for the Solar System Science Collaboration. The pipeline work will be overseen by Dr. Wesley Fraser. Solar System research at NRC Herzberg focuses on observational studies of the icy denizens of the outer Solar System. The DAO maintains and operates Canada's largest and most powerful observatories. Staff at the DAO provide extensive data management and analysis tools through our Canadian Astronomy Data Centre, support activities at international observatories, and develop advanced astronomical instruments with industrial partners. The Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre is located in Victoria, British Columbia, a city known for its outdoor activities and scenery. For more information, please contact Dr. Wesley Fraser at [email protected].



Applicants must have earned a PhD in astronomy, astrophysics, or a related field at the time of appointment. The other selection criteria for these positions are demonstrated experience in processing of large astronomical surveys, pipelines or catalogs; and evidence of proficiency in oral and written communication and collaborative software development. Additional desirable but not essential criteria are: prior expertise in high performance computing; and a demonstrated ability to supervise research students. The initial appointment for each position will be for two years, with the possibility of further extensions.

The salary for each position is dependent on research experience and qualifications, but will be competitive with cost of living in the various locations hosting the fellows. Each position includes generous benefits, an annual research allowance, relocation assistance, and the opportunity to request additional research funds.

The Canadian Rubin Consortium is committed to supporting fellows in inclusive and flexible workplaces. We encourage applications from qualified applicants of all sexual orientations and gender expressions, racialized people, Indigenous peoples, and persons with disabilities. Subject to immigration regulations, the successful candidate will be given the option to take up the position as a part-time appointment if needed (e.g., for parental leave). Such a request need not be made as part of a candidate's initial application.

The nominal starting date for all these positions is October 2, 2023. All application materials must be submitted online at AcademicJobsOnline by November 14, 2022. Applicants should submit (in PDF format): a cover letter explicitly addressing the above selection criteria; a curriculum vitae, a list of publications, and a one-page summary of future research interests. Applicants should also arrange to have three letters of reference (on letterhead and signed) uploaded through AcademicJobsOnline directly by the writers by November 14, 2022.

To apply online, please go to:


For the positions in the University of Toronto:

The normal hours of work are 40 hours per week for a full-time postdoctoral fellow (pro-rated for those holding a partial appointment) recognizing that the needs of the employee’s research and training and the needs of the supervisor’s research program may require flexibility in the performance of the employee’s duties and hours of work. Employment as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto is covered by the terms of the CUPE 3902 Unit 5 Collective Agreement.

This job is posted in accordance with the CUPE 3902 Unit 5 Collective Agreement.

The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2S+ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.



Application Deadline: 
Monday, November 14, 2022
Selection Deadline: 
Wednesday, February 15, 2023
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
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Attention To: 
Prof. Renée Hložek
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Attention To: 
Prof. Renée Hložek