Postdoctoral Research Associate in Adaptive Optics in the Centre for Advanced Instrumentation

Updated: 3 months ago
Location: Durham, ENGLAND
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 11 Dec 2023

The Role and Department

The Centre for Advanced Instrumentation (CfAI) is a large major research group in the Department of Physics at Durham University with approximately seventy staff and research students. CfAI's mission is to design and develop novel instrumentation based on cutting edge technologies. CfAI develops state-of-the-art ground and space-based instruments for applications across a wide range of disciplines including adaptive optics, spectroscopy, biophysics, remote sensing, laser communications, and fusion diagnostics.

CfAI has provided major instruments for many of the world's leading astronomical facilities including the James Webb Space Telescope, William Herschel Telescope, Gemini Telescopes, Southern African Large Telescope and the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope. Major current ground-based instrumentation projects in CfAI include HARMONI and MOSAIC, the first-light spectrograph and multi-object spectrograph for the upcoming 39m diameter Extremely Large Telescope.

The Role

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Research Associate position in the Adaptive Optics group in Durham. The role will be split between the development of the AO systems for the HARMONI and MOSAIC instruments for the ELT and one of several AO lab-based research projects we have here in Durham including: multi-wavelength AO wavefront sensing and control, predictive wavefront control using Neural Networks, AO for Terahertz imaging, Wide-field AO for solar telescopes and Novel wide-field laser guide star wavefront sensing.

You will be expected to contribute to AO system design, integration and performance analysis with an emphasis on the development of the Real Time Control (RTC) system. You will be doing this alongside our very experienced RTC team but a familiarity with (or a willingness to learn) RTC software development is a requirement for this role. The research project you join will be dependent on your skills and your future career goals and we are happy to discuss which project you could best contribute to when you start.

This position will provide experience of the full range of AO system development, from initial design to system performance optimisation and everything in between, whilst working on the largest and most exciting AO instrument development programs in the world. As such this role will suit someone who wishes to gain practical experience of making AO systems work, as well as developing an in-depth understanding of the software that is at their core.



Similar Positions