Research Assistant in Space Radiation and Instrumentation

Surrey, United Kingdom
£28,762 to £35,333 per annum
21 Nov 2022
End of advertisement period
13 Dec 2022
Academic Discipline
Physical Sciences, Physics & Astronomy
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Surrey Space Centre - Electrical

Location: Guildford
Salary: £28,762 to £35,333 per annum
Fixed Term
Post Type: Full Time
Closing Date:  23.59 hours GMT on Tuesday 13 December 2022
Reference: 083922

Research Assistant in Space Radiation and Instrumentation ( 18 Months - Fixed term Contract)

The Surrey Space Centre (SSC) is a world-leading centre for space radiation and space weather research. SSC is beginning a new project to build airborne (aircraft and balloon-mounted) instruments to measure the radiation fluxes, dose rates and electronic upset/failure rates in the atmosphere due to the influence of galactic cosmic rays and solar-induced ground-level enhancements. The data will be used to validate the MAIRE+ nowcast model recently developed within the group and lay the foundations for further research activity.

Hence SSC is looking to recruit a Research Assistant to contribute to the group’s work by:

  • assisting with instrument design and engineering,
  • using space environment models to guide the development and the interpretation of results;
  • provide technical support to the research group for developing other related space-based instruments.

The successful candidate will join the Space Environment and Protection Group based on the Guilford campus which carries out wide-ranging research in the field of space weather and its impacts: the group conducts projects with many international bodies including ESA, NASA, NOAA, Met Office, EU, NERC, SSTL and EDF.

The Research Assistant will undertake the following work:

  • Contribute to the development, build, test and calibration of new instruments for measuring the aviation and space radiation environments: this will cover both hardware and software elements.
  • Prepare documentation to describe and record the instrument design, build, test and calibration process and to ensure quality and traceability. 
  • Use space environment models to assist in the development and specification of new instruments and in the analysis of data collected.
  • Assist in the fitting and deployment of instruments into aircraft, balloons and satellites as required and in the collection of data.
  • Liaise with project partners including airlines and Met Office: also undertaking outreach at conferences, events and with the general public.
  • Assist in other space centre activities as required and developing new initiatives in the field

The post holder must have:

  • A PhD (or soon to be obtained) or equivalent experience gained, for example, in the engineering and technology sector plus suitable training/study
  • Knowledge and experience of space radiation environments and the associated physics
  • Knowledge and experience of electronic engineering (ideally analogue and digital)
  • Good written and verbal communication skills 
  • A team-oriented approach.

It would also be desirable that the post holder has a broad background knowledge of space engineering, space systems and/or avionics.

We welcome applications from people of all backgrounds.

For further information, please contact Prof. Keith Ryden (

Further details: Job Description

For more information and to apply online, please download the further details and click on the 'apply online' button above.

In return we offer a generous pension, relocation assistance where appropriate, flexible working options including job share and blended home/campus working locations (dependent on work duties), access to world-class leisure facilities on campus, a range of travel schemes and supportive family friendly benefits including an excellent on-site nursery.

Click here to find out more about the benefits we offer to support you.

The University of Surrey is committed to providing an inclusive environment that offers equal opportunities for all. We place great value on diversity and are seeking to increase the diversity within our community. Therefore we particularly encourage applications from under-represented groups, such as people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups and people with disabilities.