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

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-Saclay university campus in Orsay, is one of the largest space institute 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 Cosmology team is now participating to new mission concepts such as LiteBIRD and PIXIE but also the stratospheric balloon BISOU. 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.


Job description
A junior post-doctoral research position is available for an enthusiastic and motivated expert in mm-wave instrumentation, particularly orientated towards radio, millimetre and sub-millimetre wave optical and quasi-optical systems. You will be involved in all aspects of the laboratory activities but you will be responsible in particular for the supervision of the general optics activities of the team, from the design to the development of new astronomical projects and test set ups, as well as of the integration and characterisation of optical / RF systems that will be developed for either dedicated projects or R&D purposes. You will be expected 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 optical and quasi-optical systems and components;
  • Definition and modelling of optical systems, from telescopes to receivers cold optics;
  • Design and operation of test set-ups for optical /RF systems characterisation and qualification;
  • Participation to specific balloon borne and/or space projects;
  • 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;
  • Specialist knowledge in waveguide, antennas and/or meta-material technologies;
  • Expertise in radio/mm-wave/optical modelling using methods such as Physical Optics, Method of Moment and/or finite element analysis, and experience in 3D RF modelling using HFSS, FEKO, CST or similar software packages;
  • Experience in optical/RF testing, preferably using vector network analysers or similar equipment;
  • Proven ability to write reports / publications record relative to previous employment length;
  • Good communication skills – Ability to liaise effectively with a range of individuals;
  • Ability to travel and work in other institutes;


Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Knowledge in astronomical receivers and/or astronomical instrumentation;
  • Experience with cryogenic systems;
  • Knowledge in Radio / mm-wave detection systems;
  • Knowledge in telescope system design and modelling;


Salary: €2600 – €2850 per month (about €2100 - €2300 after tax) depending on experience


Please send a full CV, including a list of publications to Bruno Maffei  by the 8th of October 2021.


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