Research Assistant/Associate in Space Physics

Job summary

Applications are invited for a Research Assistant/Associate within the Space and Atmospheric Physics Group of the Department of Physics. You will be required to perform, analyse and interpret high performance computer simulations of the Earth’s magnetosphere using global modelling. The primary aim of the work is to better understand the behaviour of the solar wind magnetosphere interaction during space weather events. The work will focus on...

Job listing information

  • Reference NAT00533
  • Date posted 11 September 2019
  • Closing date 11 October 2019

Job description

Job summary

Applications are invited for a Research Assistant/Associate within the Space and Atmospheric Physics Group of the Department of Physics. You will be required to perform, analyse and interpret high performance computer simulations of the Earth’s magnetosphere using global modelling.

The primary aim of the work is to better understand the behaviour of the solar wind magnetosphere interaction during space weather events. The work will focus on modelling the magnetospheric and ionospheric conditions that are associated with strong geomagnetically induced currents on the surface of the Earth. The work will involve using a variety of computer simulation codes developed in the physics department at Imperial College together with high performance computing services including Imperial’s CX1 system and the NERC ARCHER system.

The work will be performed in the context of a NERC-funded consortium led by the British Geological Survey (SWIGS) whose goal is to radically improve our understanding of how space weather affects ground-based technology through the production of geomagnetically induced currents.

Duties and responsibilities

The main duties will include:

  • Investigating the nature and properties of geomagnetically induced currents in the framework of the global magnetospheric simulation code, Gorgon
  • Implementing downscaling, enhanced terrestrial magnetic field models, and coupling to other simulations and datasets as appropriate
  • Development of bespoke data visualisation tools and post-processing analysis enabling analysis of data from Gorgon and other simulation tools

Essential requirements

You will need to have a PhD (for appointment at Research Associate level) or be about to obtain a PhD (for appointment at Research Assistant level) in Space Physics, or have an equivalent level of professional qualifications and/or experience

You must also be able to demonstrate the following essential criteria:

  • A strong background and confidence in space plasma physics
  • Experience in the field of computational simulations for planetary magnetospheres and/or solar atmospheres and/or laboratory plasma experiments analogous to the space environment
  • Research experience in developing computer codes for data analysis or simulation post-processing
  • Evidence of the ability to carry out original research and to produce first author scientific research papers

It is expected that you will use the position to develop your track record and research independence.

Further information

The position is available to start as soon as possible and available up to the grant end date of 2nd April 2021.

Candidates who have not yet been officially awarded their PhD will be appointed as a Research Assistant within the salary range £35,477- £38,566 per annum

Should you require any further details on the role, please contact: Dr Jonathan Eastwood (Senior Lecturer in Physics) at jonathan.eastwood@imperial.ac.uk  

Should you have any queries about the application process, please contact Ciara Mulholland (Senior Section Administrator) at space.sec@imperial.ac.uk

For any technical queries during the application process please contact: recruitment@imperial.ac.uk

The Department of Physics is an IOP JUNO Champion and an Athena Silver SWAN Award winner reflecting our commitment to building a supportive, inclusive and highly motivated community.

The College is a proud signatory to the San-Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), which means that in hiring and promotion decisions, we evaluate applicants on the quality of their work, not the journal impact factor where it is published. For more information, see https://www.imperial.ac.uk/research-and-innovation/about-imperial-research/research-evaluation/

The College believes that the use of animals in research is vital to improve human and animal health and welfare. Animals may only be used in research programmes where their use is shown to be necessary for developing new treatments and making medical advances. Imperial is committed to ensuring that, in cases where this research is deemed essential, all animals in the College’s care are treated with full respect, and that all staff involved with this work show due consideration at every level. http://www.imperial.ac.uk/research-and-innovation/about-imperial-research/research-integrity/animal-research

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About Imperial College London

Imperial College London is the UK’s only university focussed entirely on science, engineering, medicine and business and we are consistently rated in the top 10 universities in the world.

You will find our main London campus in South Kensington, with our hospital campuses located nearby in West and North London. We also have Silwood Park in Berkshire and state-of-the-art facilities in development at our major new campus in White City.

We work in a multidisciplinary and diverse community for education, research, translation and commercialisation, harnessing science and innovation to tackle the big global challenges our complex world faces.

It’s our mission to achieve enduring excellence in all that we do for the benefit of society – and we are looking for the most talented people to help us get there.

Additional information

Please note that job descriptions cannot be exhaustive and the post-holder may be required to undertake other duties, which are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.

All Imperial employees are expected to follow the 7 principles of Imperial Expectations: 

  • Champion a positive approach to change and opportunity
  • Communicate regularly and effectively within, and across, teams
  • Consider the thoughts and expectations of others
  • Deliver positive outcomes
  • Encourage inclusive participation and eliminate discrimination
  • Develop and grow skills and expertise
  • Work in a planned and managed way 

In addition to the above, employees are required to observe and comply with all College policies and regulations.

Imperial College is committed to equality of opportunity, to eliminating discrimination and to creating an inclusive working environment. We are an Athena SWAN Silver award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a Disability Confident Employer and work in partnership with GIRES to promote respect for trans people.