Research Associate in High Energy Physics

Job summary

The High Energy Physics Group at Imperial College London invites applications for a Research Associate position to work on the CMS experiment at the LHC. This position will involve contributing to the group’s commitments to the Phase-2 upgrade.

Job listing information

  • Reference NAT00873
  • Date posted 22 February 2021
  • Closing date 23 March 2021

Job description

Job summary

The High Energy Physics Group at Imperial College London invites applications for a Research Associate position to work on the CMS experiment at the LHC. This position will involve contributing to the group’s commitments to the Phase-2 upgrade.

Duties and responsibilities

The Imperial CMS group has major detector responsibilities in the tracking and trigger systems of CMS, as well as long standing interests in upgrades to the tracker, endcap calorimeter and Level-1 trigger. You will work on the design, development and testing of these upgrades, in particular the Level-1 trigger.

Essential requirements

You will hold a PhD* in a relevant area or have an equivalent level of professional qualifications and experience.

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

  • Experience of data analysis techniques and algorithms in experimental High Energy Physics
  • Good knowledge and experience of programming in C++ or Python
  • Experience with electronic hardware and/or detector operations in a cutting-edge High Energy Physics environment
  • Experience in leadership or evidence of future leadership potential
  • Experience in taking initiative and/or developing own ideas independently
  • A creative approach to problem-solving with a high-level analytic ability

In addition, it would be desirable if you had:

  • Experience with machine learning techniques
  • Knowledge of FPGA firmware development in VHDL or HLS
  • Experience of operating and maintaining hardware based on state-of-the-art FPGAs
  • Experience of working in an international collaborative environment
  • A strong track record with clearly defined individual contributions

Further information

This is a full time, fixed term position available for two years in the first instance with the possibility of extension. 

*Candidates who have not yet been officially awarded their PhD will be appointed as Research Assistant within the salary range £36,045 - £39,183 per annum.

The position will be based in London but will require regular travel to CERN in Geneva or vice-versa. Other UK and foreign travel is likely to be required.

The Imperial College High Energy Physics Group has a strong ongoing experimental programme encompassing the T2K, Super-Kamiokande and future Hyper-Kamiokande experiments in Japan; the future neutrino oscillation experiment DUNE at Fermilab and SURF in the USA; the search for sterile neutrinos with SoLid in Belgium; the search for charged lepton flavour violation with COMET in Japan; the CMS and LHCb experiments at the LHC; the search for dark matter with the LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) experiment in the USA; the MICE experiment in the UK; the Atom Interferometer Observatory and Network (AION) project in the UK and the USA; SHiP and SuperNEMO activities and the development of future experiments. There are also significant accelerator, phenomenology and Grid computing programmes.

More information about the Department of Physics and the High Energy Physics Group can be found on our webpages.

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

Further details about the position are available from Dr Alex Tapper, Reader in Physics, (

Should you have any queries about the application process please contact Paula Brown, Section Administrator, (

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

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.


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.

We are committed to equality of opportunity, to eliminating discrimination and to creating an inclusive working environment for all. We therefore encourage candidates to apply irrespective of age, disability, marriage or civil partnership status, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion and belief, gender identity, sex, or sexual orientation. We are an Athena SWAN Silver Award winner, a Disability Confident Leader and a Stonewall Diversity Champion.

For technical issues when applying online please email