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Post-Doctoral Research position in mm & sub-mm waves Astronomical Instrumentation

Position filled.

A post-doctoral research position is available for an enthusiastic and motivated expert in mm-wave instrumentation, particularly orientated towards millimetre and sub-millimetre wave cryogenically cooled detection systems, preferably using bolometric and/or Kinetic Inductance Detectors. You will be involved in all aspects of the laboratory activities but you will be responsible in particular for the supervision of the general detector activities of the team, from the design to the development of new test set-ups, as well as of the integration and characterisation of detection systems that will be developed for either dedicated projects or R&D purposes. We will expect you to actively participate and lead the writing of the regular reports for funding agencies and publication of the results in conference and peer reviewed journals, but also to help with the supervision of post-graduate students.

Key Responsibilities, Accountabilities or Duties

The range of duties will include:
  • Definition of requirements and specifications of receiver systems and components;
  • Overall and detailed definition of receiver systems;
  • Design of test set-ups for detection system characterisation and qualification at cryogenic temperature;
  • Assembly, Integration and Verification (AIV) of cryogenically cooled detection systems;
  • Participation to specific balloon borne and/or space projects;
  • Coordinate detector tests within IAS and with partners;
  • Coordination and management of research with other collaborating institutes;
  • Write up reports and publications;
  • Dissemination of knowledge in conferences;
  • Help in supervision of post-graduate students working on similar projects;
  • Help in preparation of future funding proposals.


Essential Knowledge, Skills and Experience.
  • A PhD in a relevant field;
  • Specialist knowledge in general radio / mm and sub-mm waves instrumentation;
  • Expertise in mm-wave detection systems, preferably on direct detectors such as bolometers and/or KIDs;
  • Experience in optical/RF testing/calibration;
  • Expertise in cryogenic systems, preferably with sub-K systems;
  • Proven ability to write reports and good publications record relative to previous employment length;
  • Good oral communication skills and good ability to present work within collaborations and in conferences – Ability to liaise effectively with a range of individuals;
  • Ability to travel and work in other institutes;
  • Willingness to learn French if not already experienced.
Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Experience
  • Specialist knowledge in waveguide, antennas and/or meta-material technologies;
  • Specialist knowledge in astronomical receivers and/or astronomical instrumentation;
  • Experience in 3D RF modelling using HFSS, FEKO, CST or similar software packages;
  • Experience with operation of vector network analysers;
  • Experience in thermo-mechanical modelling;
  • Ability to supervise PhD students.

Having participated to or/and led several space missions (Planck, Herschel, ISO, Rosetta to cite only a few) as well as contributed to several balloon and ground based projects, the Institut d’Astrophysique Spatiale (IAS) based on the Paris-Sud university campus in Orsay is one of the largest space institutes in France. It has many international collaborations and is working closely with CNES, ESA, NASA and JAXA.

Having led the efforts on the Planck High Frequency Instrument (HFI), its Interstellar Matter and Cosmology team (MIC) is currently involved in the present and future balloon borne projects PILOT and B-Side, the space missions Euclid and JSWT-MIRI. The IAS is now participating to new mission concepts such as COrE+ and/or SPICA (ESA M5 proposal), as well as PIXIE (NASA). Its instrumental activities are mainly based on mm and sub-millimetre detection systems development, with particular expertise in the field of direct detectors, optics, cryogenics and calibration systems.

Salary:  €30,900 – €42,865 per annum depending on experience

Start:  From 1 st of July 2016

Duration:  2 years

Probation period: 1 month

Based at: Institut d’Astrophysique Spatiale (IAS) – Orsay, France, Université Paris-Sud, Université Paris-Saclay

Contact: Prof. Bruno Maffei ( for further informal enquiries



Please send a full CV, including a list of publications to by the 10 October 2016.


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