Research Associate in Physics

Perth, Australia
30 Aug 2017
End of advertisement period
01 Oct 2017
Academic Discipline
Physical Sciences, Physics & Astronomy
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

UWA Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences

School of Physics and Astrophysics

  • 1 year fixed term appointment
  • Level A position: $67,352 - $91,397 per annum

The University of Western Australia (UWA) is ranked amongst the top Australian universities and a member of the prestigious Group of Eight research-intensive universities ranked among the top 100 universities in the world.

About the work area

OzGrav Overview:

The Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav, has recently been established to use the historic first detections of gravitational waves to understand the extreme physics of black holes and warped space time. These discoveries will inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers to make use of this new window on the universe. OzGrav will provide experimental validation of Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity and involve the use of billion-dollar experimental apparatus such as Advanced LIGO and the Square Kilometre Array.

The Centre includes the following participating universities: Swinburne University of Technology, The Australian National University, The University of Melbourne, Monash University, The University of Western Australia, The University of Adelaide as well as overseas organisations including Caltech andMIT and the international LIGO Scientific Collaboration.

The University of Western Australia, OzGrav node is part of a large national team of gravitational wave (GW) researchers working on instrumentation and optics, astrophysics, data analysis, pulsar timing and multi-messenger astronomy.The UWA node has a rich research history in multi-messenger astronomy. Our main focus is understanding transient gravitational wave sources and their relationship to possible electromagnetic sources, especially gamma ray bursts. We operate a 1-m fully robotic telescope (Zadko Telescope) for rapid follow-up of transients across the electromagnetic spectrum and beyond, including: gamma ray bursts, fast radio bursts, neutrino sources and gravitational wave (GW) candidates.

Our astrophysics program collaborates with other OzGrav nodes, and as active members of the international LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC), our work also focuses on analysing LIGO data for GW sources correlated with gamma ray bursts and fast radio bursts.

The role

The postdoctoral fellow is to conduct research and development in the area of multi-messenger astronomy with a focus on gravitational wave transients and electromagnetic counterparts.

Our core research facility is the Zadko Telescope, with which the postdoc will have the opportunity to lead or manage multiple observational projects. These include gamma ray burst optical follow-up, and searching for optical counterparts to fast radio bursts.

One key task will be to develop and test optimal procedures for identifying optical counterparts to LIGO GW sources. The role is expected to have some overlap with GW data analysis research at UWA, and other OzGrav nodes. 

In addition the fellow will supervise final year undergraduate, Master and PhD students working on science projects that employ the Zadko telescope.

To be considered for this position you will need to demonstrate:

  • A PhD in Mathematics
  • A PhD in physics or engineering
  • Experience in programming and control systems is desirable
  • Experience in observational and/or robotic astronomy is desirable
  • Publications in high impact journals
  • An ability to communicate at a technical level and with the public (media).

Closing date: 1 October 2017

This position is open to international applicants.

Application Details: Please apply online via the Apply Now button. 

Please see the position description prior to applying: Download File Position_Description.pdf

  • UWA has been awarded Top Ten Employer for LGBTI – inclusion of the Australian Workplace Equity Index (AWEI -2016).
  • The University is also a proud member of the Athena SWAN/SAGE Pilot for Gender Equity.