WVU Research Corporation Postdoctoral Fellow - Multi-Messenger Astrophysics in Morgantown, West Virginia
Description Purpose This position supports the Center for Gravitational Waves and Cosmology by bringing expertise and novel research in observational multi-messenger astronomy. This position will perform research on topics in gravitational-wave astrophysics, galaxy evolution, and the physical processes of active galactic nuclei.
The incumbent serves as a resource contact relative to the research project. In-depth skills, knowledge, and interpretive abilities, as well as some creativity, are required to successfully perform duties. Independently uses professional concepts and organizational policies to solve a wide range of moderate to complex problems in imaginative and practical ways. Work effort often addresses non-routine matters within established protocol, guidelines, and/or policies. Work effort has significant impact on client services and operations, producing moderate to major organizational, legal and financial results and/or liabilities. Position duties require oversight of projects.
Duties & Responsibilities Responsibilities are functional in nature, and performed under limited supervision. Specific tasks include, but are not limited to: 1) Multi-frequency studies of binary/recoiling supermassive black holes 2) Astrophysical interpretation of limits on gravitational wave emission from pulsar timing arrays. 3) Independent/self-directed research that will further the goals of the Center for Gravitational Waves and Cosmology. 4) Attend research conferences and read scientific literature to keep abreast of technological advances and current research findings. 5) Identify and assist with acquisition of funding from public, private, and governmental sources. a. Assist with development of novel research proposals for sponsor submission. b. Write proposals, papers, and abstracts to attract research funds. 6) Search scientific literature to select and modify methods and procedures most appropriate for research goals. 7) Perform laboratory and field experiment activities according to protocol. a. Independent experimental data analysis. b. Maintain detailed logs of work related activities, including accurate laboratory records and data on research methods, procedures, and results. 8) Oversee research facilities and personnel a. Assure compliance with research protocols and safety requirements. b. Oversee and direct undergraduate and graduate researchers in the completion of experiments. c. Maintain lab equipment; keep accurate inventory of lab assets; monitor and assure proper use and conditions of lab equipment. 9) Write and present research/study status reports for review and use of the Principal Investigator and collaborating team. 10) Prepare results of experimental findings for presentation to colleagues and the sponsor; at professional/technical conferences; and for publication in scientific journals, as directed.
Supervisory/Lead Role This position reports to the Principal Investigator. It normally receives no instructions on routine work, but will receive instructions/advice when starting a new project or when a difficulty arises in the current project. Typically determines methods or procedures and consults with the supervisor on new assignments. General sharing of knowledge and team participation is expected in the role. Guidance or supervision of others may be required.
Physical Demands Requires physical abilities to perform laboratory research, including manual dexterity and abilities to see, hear, walk, talk, and feel. Individual is required to lift and carry items of 25 lbs or less or transport such items by cart. Walking and stair climbing occur on a daily basis.
Work Environment Work will be performed in a standard laboratory environment, using computers and laboratory equipment with electrical connections. The incumbent must comply with all laboratory safety procedures and clothing/equipment requirements. Should there be exposure to laboratory chemicals or electrical supplies, protective measures will be provided.
Requirements Requisite Qualifications Education and/or Experience 1) PhD in Astronomy, Physics, Astrophysics, Engineering, or a related discipline 2) Experience in multi-wavelength AGN observation and/or supermassive black hole binary evolution.
Skills, Knowledge, Abilities 1) Experience in observational astronomical data analysis and familiarity with the use of standard astronomical data reduction software. 2) Ability to work with Unix-based systems and software. 3) Skilled at using scientific rules and methods to solve problems. 4) Skilled at identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions. 5) The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. 6) Ability to document and present the results of research. 7) Ability to write presentations and articles for publication that conform to prescribed style and format as well as use original or innovative techniques or style due to the nature of the scientific content of the material being presented. 8) Ability to make effective and persuasive presentations on controversial or complex topics to technical and non-technical audiences 9) Ability to apply principles of logical or scientific thinking to a wide range of intellectual and practical problems. 10) Ability to deal with nonverbal symbolism (formulas, scientific equations, graphs, etc.). 11) Ability to deal with a variety of abstract and concrete variables. 12) Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions in mathematical or diagram form. 13) Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts and draw valid conclusions. 14) Ability to meet deadlines, as well as prepare, present and report results effectively. 15) Ability to collaborate effectively with a multidisciplinary team of co-investigators from diverse disciplines, orientations, and organizations. 16) Ability to do strategic planning for program development.
Behavioral Competencies 1) Technical skills – Strives to continuously build knowledge and skills; pursues training and development opportunities; assess strengths, weaknesses, and shares expertise with others. 2) Problem solving – Gathers and analyzes information, identifies problems, develops alternatives, uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics and works well in groups and resolves matters timely. 3) Interpersonal Interactions in the Workplace – Manages difficult or emotional matters with objectivity and openness; responds promptly to needs and requests for service and assistance; meets commitments and dates, notifies others if change occurs; provides, solicits and applies feedback; and builds goodwill through balanced contributions, positive approach, respect and support of others. 4) Communications – Demonstrates group presentation skills, participates in meetings, listens and gets clarification, is responsive and speaks clearly and persuasively in positive and negative situations. Writes and edits clearly and informatively, varies style to meet needs, presents numerical data effectively, and able to read and interpret written information. 5) Organizational Support – Aligns work and develops strategies to meet organizational goals; seeks to improve and promote quality; demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness; and upholds organizational expectations and values. 6) Self-Management – Responds to management direction; resourcefully adapts to changes in work environment and circumstances; responds well under pressure and manages competing demands; takes calculated risks, asks for and offers help when needed; exercise discretion and sound judgment; is tactful and responsible for own actions. Adheres to work schedule and complies with leave management responsibilities.
Preferred Qualifications & Credentials Education and/or Experience 1) Skills in multi-messenger data analysis, particularly using gravitational waves. 2) A record of successful proposals to multi-wavelength observational facilities. 3) Ability to automate computational procedures through common programming or scripting languages.
Requisition Number: 16-0096
Post Date: 7/29/2016
Title: Postdoctoral Fellow - Multi-Messenger Astrophysics
Position Type: Full Time
Work Hours: 40 hpw