Postdoctoral Research Associate or Fellow

University of Exeter
February 18, 2024
Offerd Salary:£32,982
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
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The starting salary for an Associate will be from £32,982 on Grade E, and for a Fellow it will be from £41,732 on Grade F, depending on qualifications and experience.


Generous holiday allowances, flexible working, pension scheme and relocation package (if applicable).

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P91156 PDRF JD.pdf P91156 PDRA JD.pdf
Postdoctoral Research Associate or Fellow

Job description

Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy

The above full-time post, funded by the UK Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), is available from 1st April 2024 for up to three years in the Faculty of Environment, Science and Economy. Starting dates later in 2024 are possible.

The post

The Faculty is recruiting a Postdoctoral Research Associate or Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Astrophysics to conduct a research programme at the forefront of the exoplanetary atmosphere modelling alongside Dr. Eric Hébrard, Prof. Nathan Mayne, and other members of the Exeter Exoplanet Theory Group (EETG).

The successful applicant will use numerical simulations performed with a state-of-the-art 3D modelling framework, the Met Office Unified Model (UM), to provide detailed spectroscopic spatial maps of the chemical, thermal and dynamic composition of warm, hot, and/or ultra-hot gas giant exoplanets. The broad goal is to understand how the interplay of a diversity of atmospheric processes shape the spatial distribution of the chemical composition - and its corresponding synthetic observables – on these exoplanets. The results of these simulations will be used to interpret the latest observations from space and ground-based international facilities in which the EETG is involved, including the analysis of a phase-curve measurement of unprecedented accuracy obtained for WASP-121b, one of the most studied Ultra-Hot Jupiters (UHJs), with the JWST NIRSpec instrument (GO-1729, PI: Mikal-Evans). In particular, the comparison between the numerical simulations and the observations are expected to be greatly improved with the development of a more detailed model framework including key atmospheric processes, such as the impacts of clouds, additional sources of opacity (hydrogen anion H-, metals/metal oxides and any associated ions), heat redistribution from the H2-H thermal dissociation/recombination, photochemistry, etc. There will also be opportunity to engage in the longer term with the next-generation climate model of the Met Office, LFRic.

The post will also include participating in regular meetings with local and international collaborators, presenting results at domestic/international conferences and in journal articles, and contributing to the wider management of the EETG, through the supervision of undergraduate and postgraduate students, and committing to improve the inclusivity of our working environment.

About you

Applicants will possess a relevant PhD (or nearing completion for Associate) in Astrophysics, Physics, or a related field of study.

The successful applicant will likely be a recognised authority in the modelling of exoplanetary atmospheres and possess sufficient specialist knowledge in the discipline to develop research programmes and methodologies. Ability to develop a large, rapidly evolving codebase through a shared, multi- contributor, development environment will be essential, alongside a substantial experience in running on supercomputers and visualising/interpreting results from complex hydrodynamical/climate models. General knowledge of the physics and chemistry of planetary atmospheres is also essential, with a special emphasis on the interactions of dynamics, radiative transfer and chemistry. The successful applicant will also be able to work collaboratively, supervise the work of others and act as team leader as required.

Please ensure you read the Job Description and Person Specification for full details of this role by clicking on the attachment.

What we can offer you

  • 41 days leave per year
  • Options for flexible working
  • Onsite gyms on all of our campuses and a cycle-to-work scheme
  • Sector-leading policies around maternity, adoption and shared parental leave (up to 26 weeks full pay), paternity leave (up to six weeks full pay) and a Fertility Treatment Policy
  • Stunning campus environment in Exeter, in the beautiful South West of England
  • The University of Exeter

    We are a member of the prestigious Russell Group of research-intensive universities and in the top 200 universities in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024 and QS World University Ranking 2024). We combine world-class teaching with world-class research, achieving a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework Award 2023, underpinned by Gold ratings for Student Experience and Student Outcomes.

    Our world-leading research impact has grown more than any other Russell Group university in recent years, and we are home to some of the world's most influential researchers, seeking to answer some of the most fundamental issues facing humankind today. More than 99% of our research is of international quality and 47% is world-leading (2021 Research Excellence Framework).

    We encourage proactive engagement with industry, business and community partners to enhance the impact of research and education and improve the employability of our students. Read about our world leading research – Green Futures and how we are transforming education for a changing world. We are located in a beautiful part of the country and Exeter (a fast growing tech hub) is one of only a few UK cities to have been designated as a UNESCO Creative City

    Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Commitment

    We are committed to ensuring reasonable adjustments are available for interviews and workplaces.

    Whilst all applicants will be judged on merit alone, we particularly welcome applications from groups currently underrepresented within our working community.

    With over 30,000 students and 7,000 staff from 150 different countries we offer a diverse and engaging environment where our diversity is celebrated and valued as a major strength. We are committed to creating an inclusive culture where all members of our community are supported to thrive; where diverse voices are heard through our engagement with evidence-based charter frameworks for gender (Athena SWAN and Project Juno for Physics), race equality (Race Equality Charter Mark), LGBTQ+ inclusion (Stonewall Diversity Champion) and as a Disability Confident employer.

    Further Information

    For further information please contact Dr. Eric Hébrard, e-mail [email protected].

    The closing date for completed applications is 18/02/2024. Interviews are expected to take place later in February. When applying, please include a CV including a publication list , a research statement stating your research and achievements (maximum 2 pages) and a cover letter describing why you are suitable for the post and any other information you feel is relevant.

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