Research Scientist

Fairfax, VA
$80,000 - $85,000 per year, with a generous travel funding budget and publication charge support.
May 12, 2021
May 30, 2021
Analyst, Research
Full Time
Research Scientist, Synthetic Photometry and Spectrophotometry
The George Mason University Department of Physics and Astronomy and the United States Naval Observatory (USNO) invite applications for a Research Scientist. George Mason University has a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of excellence and diversity among its faculty and staff, and strongly encourages candidates to apply who will enrich Mason's academic and culturally inclusive environment.

About the Department: The Department of Physics and Astronomy was created to support the College's strategic plan in improving administrative efficiency and allowing for broader academic programs. Its mission is to provide the interdisciplinary advantages and opportunities to undergraduate and graduate students and ensure success in 21st century careers through lectures, labs, seminars, events and research. Faculty contribute their scholarship in creating and applying new knowledge.

Responsibilities: This position will be for an initial period of 2 years with an optional 3rd year and will be based at the USNO in Washington, D.C. The successful applicant will work closely with Dr. Gregory Hennessy and other members of the Celestial Reference Frame Department on synthetic photometry and spectrophotometry. This position will be for 50% self-directed research and 50% research and operational work in support of USNO. The candidate will be expected to: * Produce astronomical code to perform high precision synthetic photometry of stars used for calibration of HST and Gaia, with the intention of adding this code to a Postgresql SQL database; * Actively self-direct a research program including proposing for and obtaining time on astronomical instruments, or computing facilities suitable to research goals and publication of papers; and * Play an active role in the scientific culture of the observatory by contributing to journal clubs, colloquia, and professional seminars where appropriate.

Required Qualifications: * Completion of a PhD in astronomy, astrophysics, physics, or related field prior to the first day of appointment; * Must be a US Citizen; and * Must be able to obtain a SECRET level security clearance.

Preferred Qualifications: Preference will be given to applicants with experience/publications in one or more of the following areas: * Synthetic photometry; * Spectrophotometry; and/or * Astrometry and photometry.

Collaborating with USNO provides unique exposure to astronomical applications that are marketable to industry, government agencies, and academia. The wonderful academic partnership that USNO shares with GMU allows for access to students, postdoctoral fellows, staff, and professors with potential for mentorships and collaborations. USNO's unique mission and access to resources including instrumentation, telescopes, and funding in support of research will provide a solid platform for early career researchers to grow. USNO boasts a vibrant, rigorous scientific culture in support of our nation and is looking to mentor and foster a next generation of specialized skills in order to ensure continuation of its mission.

USNO is committed to diversity and inclusion and we continually aim to provide a working environment completely free from any form of discrimination. Applicants from underrepresented groups including women, underrepresented minority groups, persons with disabilities, persons who identify with the LGBTQ+ community, etc., are strongly encouraged to apply.

"For full consideration, applicants must apply at ; complete and submit the online application; and upload a CV, Research Statement, and the contact information for three or more references."

"Great Careers Begin at Mason!

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with national distinction in both academics and research. Mason holds a top U.S. News and World Report "Up and Coming" spot for national universities and is recognized for its global appeal and excellence in higher education.

Mason is currently the largest and most diverse university in Virginia with students and faculty from all 50 states and over 135 countries studying in over 200 degree programs at campuses in Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William, as well as at learning locations across the commonwealth. Rooted in Mason's diversity is a campus culture that is both rewarding and exciting, work that is meaningful, and opportunities to both collaborate and create.

If you are interested in joining the Mason family take a look at our current opportunities and catch some Mason spirit at!

George Mason University, Where Innovation is Tradition."

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