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Assistant Research Professor in Astronomy and Astrophysics - XRT Instrument Scientist

The Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics of The Pennsylvania State University has an opening for an Assistant Research Professor to work as XRT Instrument Scientist for the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory.

A PhD in Physics, Astronomy, or a closely related field is required. The position will entail working to help maintain the operations of Swift’s X-ray Telescope (XRT), as well as working for the Swift Operations Team, including development of the new Swift Target-of-Opportunity API. In addition the successful applicant would be expected to pursue a broad range of science topics, focused on, but not limited to, analysis and publication of science results from Swift observations.

Salary will be commensurate with experience. Previous experience with Swift or X-ray data analysis and X-ray instrumentation is desirable. In addition experience with telescope operations, software development, particularly utilizing the Python language, will also be desirable.

Penn State is the lead institution for the ACIS instrument on Chandra and for the X-ray Telescope on the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory. The successful applicant will also have access to other Penn State facilities, including the Hobby-Eberly telescope. Penn State is also a lead institution in the detection of compact binary mergers with LIGO.

Applications must be submitted electronically and should include a single PDF file containing a CV, publications list, and statement of research interests. In addition, please request three reference letters be sent to Applications will be reviewed beginning on August 1, 2020 and will be accepted until the position is filled. This is a fixed-term appointment funded for one year from date of hire with the possibility of renewal.

Apply online at

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