Postdoctoral Research Associate in Computational Astrophysics

Newcastle, Australia
05 May 2021
End of advertisement period
04 Jun 2021
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time
  • Work with Associate Professor David Pontin to solve problems in computational astrophysics and related fields
  • Build your international presence and collaborations in a global research environment
  • Experience a 3-year contract and the beautiful beach and café lifestyle of Newcastle, Australia 

Look to the future 

The University of Newcastle stands as a global leader distinguished by a commitment to equity and excellence. Our vision is to be a world-leading University for our regions and create a better future for our regions and the globe. Underpinned by this vision are our values of excellence, equity, engagement and sustainability. 

Be challenged and imagine with us 

We will bring the world to our regions and take our regions to the world through relevant research solutions to local, national and global problems.We want to serve our regions by taking research that matters to the world and bringing our global expertise home. 

Working with Associate Professor David Pontin to solve problems in computational astrophysics, with particular application to the Sun and solar wind, this position will provide opportunities to work across a broad spectrum and multiple projects. One of these projects is funded by the Australian Research Council on “Understanding the sources of the slow solar wind”, involving collaboration with colleagues at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and Durham University. This will involve analysis of 3D magnetic field structures and designing and performing large-scale magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the Sun’s atmosphere.

The research associates will join a vibrant new group in the expanding field of space science. The positions will involve:

  • Running computational simulations;
  • Analysis of satellite data (or collaboration with colleagues who do this);
  • Holding meetings or talks with students;
  • Participation in research applications and projects and publishing in high quality international journals;
  • Organising local seminars/conferences; and
  • Building international presence and collaborations in a global research environment, including speaking at conferences.

These positions are 3-year Fixed-term Contracts located at the Callaghan campus, Newcastle, Australia.

How will you inspire us?  

Either a finishing PhD student or candidate with previous postdoc experience, you already have a background in space or astrophysics. Ideally, you will research solar physics, (space) plasma physics, astrophysics, applied mathematics or similar subjects or be willing to collaborate towards research aligned with the interests of your team.

You will have:

  • Demonstrated computational experience and theoretical skills.
  • An interest in understanding the Sun’s atmosphere and the fundamental physical processes that occur there.
  • Proven ability to work proactively and independently to achieve research outcomes.
  • Confident communication skills and enjoy interacting as part of a team or workgroup.

For a full job description including the essential criteria, visit  

Closing date: 4/6/2021

Why commit to us? 

The University of Newcastle is a Top 200 University in the world by QS World University Rankings 2021 and a Top 10 University in Australia. 

The remuneration for this position is from $89,559 FTE +9.5% superannuation.  

From a flexible working environment to discounts in private health insurance and gym memberships, we offer access to a wide range of employee benefits including salary packaging. You can learn more about these at  

We provide opportunities for all people regardless of their background and experience, and this philosophy is reflected across all that we do.  

Let’s create this future together. Here’s how to join us: 

Click on 'Apply for this job'. Your application will be assessed on essential criteria. Read all information about the role so you understand what is required. In addition:

  • Follow all directions and complete all necessary fields of the application; and
  • In addressing the essential criteria clearly demonstrate how your skills and experience meet each point (maximum of four pages).

Applications for this position will only be accepted from those with Australian residency or a valid work permit.  

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants are encouraged to apply.

We are excited to be Looking Ahead with you