Moons around other planets - exomoons - are expected to exist, but so far none have been confirmed with observations. The aim of this project is to observe exomoons directly in far-infrared wavelengths, specifically Tidally Heated ExoMoons (THEMs), and modelling their detectability and interiors. The aim of these models is twofold: firstly to guide the selection of promising target planets that may harbour detectable exomoons, and secondly to allow for the physical interpretation of upcoming detections of such exomoons. The project will include both the application and extension of existing models, as well as the setup, planning and analysis of astronomical observations.
This project is part of the NWO Planetary and Exoplanetary Science (PEPSci) programme and ventures on the boundary of astronomy and geosciences.
We offer a funded PhD position for 4 years to be jointly supervised by Dr. Matthew Kenworthy (Leiden Observatory) and Dr. Dominic Dirkx (TU Delft). You will also join the PEPSci network together with the PhD students from other projects within the network.
We are looking for a candidate with:
A temporary contract for 38 hours per week starting from September to December 2020 for the duration of 4 years (initial contract will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of 4 years) and should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings. We also expect you to assist in teaching undergraduates and master students.
Leiden University offers comprehensive benefits including paid vacation, sick leave, disability insurance, maternity and parental leave, and retirement benefits. Health care insurance amounts to approx. 100 euro/month/person (children are free).
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