Research Assistant

Updated: about 1 year ago
Location: Glasgow, SCOTLAND
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: The position may have been removed or expired!

Job Purpose

You will contribute to a project (Ar diffusion modelling and thermal history reconstruction for lunar rocks) working with Prof. Darren Mark. Specifically, the job requires expert knowledge in implementation of high-precision diode laser step heating to meteorite samples to extract both age information and diffusion kinetics from lunar samples. To develop complex Ar diffusion models to interrogate the Late Heavy Bombardment of the solar system.
The successful candidate will also be expected to contribute to the formulation and submission of research publications and research proposals as well as help manage and direct this complex and challenging project as opportunities allow.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

Perform the following activities in conjunction with and under the guidance of the Principal/Co Investigator:
1. Plan and conduct assigned research individually or jointly in accordance with the project deliverables and SUERC research strategy.
2. Contribute to the acquisition, set up, maintenance and integration of experimental apparatus (temperature-feedback diode laser systems, noble gas mass spectrometers) or computational kit, or in setting up theoretical models or analysis strategies.
3. Document research output including analysis and interpretation of all data, maintaining records and databases, drafting technical/progress reports and papers as appropriate.
4. Develop and enhance your research profile and reputation and that of SUERC, including contributing to publications of international quality in high profile/quality refereed journals, enhancing the research impact in terms of economic/societal benefit, and gathering indicators of esteem.
5. Contribute to the presentation of work at international and national conferences, at internal and external seminars, colloquia and workshops to develop and enhance our research profile.
6. Contribute to the identification of potential funding sources and to assist in the development of proposals to secure funding from internal and external bodies to support future research.
7. Collaborate with colleagues and participate in team/group meetings/seminars/workshops across SUERC and wider community (e.g Academic and Industrial Partners).
8. Contribute to the organisation, supervision, mentoring and training of undergraduate and/or postgraduate students and less experienced members of the project team to ensure their effective development.
9. Perform administrative tasks related to the activities of the research group and School, including Budgets/Expenditure
10. Contribute to outreach and recruitment activities of SUERC.
11. Carry out modest Teaching activities (e.g demonstrating etc) and associated admin as assigned by the Head of School and in consultation with Principal Investigator.
12. Be responsible for safety management related to the organisation and running of Laboratory and/or Experimental techniques, equipment and processes as appropriate.
13. Keep up to date with current knowledge and recent advances in the field/discipline.
14. Engage in personal, professional and career development to enhance both specialist and transferable skills in accordance with desired career trajectory.
15. Undertake any other duties of equivalent standing as assigned by the Head of School and/or PI.
16. Contribute to the enhancement of the University’s international profile in line with the University’s Strategic Plan - Inspiring People – Changing the World.
These key tasks are not intended to be exhaustive but simply highlight a number of major tasks which the staff member may be reasonably expected to perform.

Knowledge, Qualifications, Skills and Experience

A1 SCQF Level 10 (Honours degree) in a relevant subject or a cognate discipline, or equivalent
A2 Specialist theoretical and practical knowledge of noble gas diffusion in silicate minerals and coding/programming of diffusion models using software such as python and matlab
A3 A comprehensive and up-to-date knowledge of the wider subject area or subject specialism
A4 Knowledge of specialist IT software (eg. Matlab, LabView, R, S-plus, SAS) as appropriate
A5 Knowledge of project-specific technical models, equipment or techniques
B1 An awarded (or recently submitted or near completion) PhD in subject specialism or equivalent
C1 Numerical modelling (Matlab, Python) of noble gas diffusion to reconstruct thermal histories
C2 Research creativity and cross-discipline collaborative ability as appropriate.
C3 Excellent communication skills (oral and written), including public presentations and ability to communicate complex data/concepts clearly and concisely
C4 Excellent interpersonal skills including team working and a collegiate approach
C5 Appropriate workload/time/project/budget/people management skills
C6 Extensive IT and data analysis/interpretation skills as appropriate.
C7 Self motivation, initiative and independent thought/working
C8 Problem solving skills including a flexible and pragmatic approach
E1 Sufficient relevant research experience (or equivalent) appropriate to an early career researcher
E2 Experience of running nobles gas mass spectrometers, laser systems and data processing
E3 Experience of scientific writing
E4 Proven ability to deliver quality outputs in a timely and efficient manner
E5 Evidence of an emerging track record of publications in a relevant field

Job Features

The aspects described below will be performed in conjunction with and under the guidance of the Principal/Co Investigator.
To carry out a range of research activities and functions within academic environments of the highest national or international quality
Publish as appropriate to subject specialism within agreed timescales
Informal supervision and support of less experienced members of the project team e.g. postgraduate and project students
Undertake teaching or other duties in accordance with school policy
Engage in personal, professional and career development to enhance both specialist and transferable skills in accordance with desired career trajectory
Planning and Organising
Management of time and prioritisation of research, teaching and administrative duties
Planning, organisation and implementation of research project on a weekly/monthly basis
Plan research directions that are within the available budget
React to varying project needs and deadlines
Decision Making
Undertake decision making on all aspects of research project/activities
Prioritise own, and where appropriate delegate to junior team members’, workload
Decide on research directions and goals within remit of original project proposal
Adjust research approaches to meet project outcomes
Identify best journals for publication and meetings/conferences to attend
Purchase of equipment and materials
Internal/External Relationships
University colleagues: to exchange information to ensure efficient working and to facilitate cross disciplinary working
External bodies/collaborators: proactively maintain co-operation and links at all levels to enhance profile and reputation
Dissemination: Preparation and presentation of reports/results and participation in meetings and conference calls
Problem Solving
Research including technical and theoretical aspects/problem solving and development of novel ideas
Be aware of project and budgetary issues, equipment lead times
Assistance of undergraduate/postgraduate students and junior team members with problems relating to research project
Representation of the University/College/School through presentation at national and international events
Attendance at training events to learn and implement new research technologies
Prepared to travel to meetings in the UK/Europe and elsewhere as required by the University

Standard Terms & Conditions

Salary will be on the University’s Research and Teaching Grade, level 6, £27,629 - £31,076 per annum.

This position is fixed term for 12 months from appointment.
New entrants to the University will be required to serve a probationary period of 6 months.
The successful applicant will be eligible to join the Universities' Superannuation Scheme. Further information regarding the scheme is available from the Superannuation Officer, who is also prepared to advise on questions relating to the transfer of Superannuation benefits.
Vacancy reference: 018573; Closing date: 22 August 2017.
All research and related activities, including grants, donations, clinical trials, contract research, consultancy and commercialisation are required to be managed through the University’s relevant processes (e.g. contractual and financial), in accordance with the University Court’s policies.
It is the University of Glasgow’s mission to foster an inclusive climate, which ensures equality in our working, learning, research and teaching environment.
We strongly endorse the principles of Athena SWAN, including a supportive and flexible working environment, with commitment from all levels of the organisation in promoting gender equity.
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