University of Central Florida, UCF Astrochemistry Laboratory

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Postdoctoral Position in Astrochemistry, Planetary Science, and Ultrafast Pump-Probe 3D-IR Raman Spectroscopy at the University of Central Florida (Dept. of Physics)

The Astrochemistry Laboratory at the Department of Physics, University of Central Florida, invites applications for a Postdoctoral Research position in Ultrafast Pump-Probe 3D-IR Raman Spectroscopy with a start date of Spring 2022 (the successful candidate may start as early as Jan 1st, 2022).

We are seeking an outstanding candidate for a postdoctoral position in our laboratory to demonstrate the applicability of the ultrafast pump-probe technique, 3D-IR Raman spectroscopy, towards planetary science as part of a NASA PICASSO-funded study. This project will investigate realistic analogs of the surfaces of small bodies (e.g., asteroids, comets, satellites, dwarf planets) using both gated Raman and 3D-IR Raman spectroscopy under simulated space environments and determine the parameters for a breadboard instrument. The successful candidate is expected to: play a primary role in setting up the gated-Raman spectrometer, interfacing it to an ultra-high vacuum chamber, as well as operating an ultrafast tunable laser, and setting up the 3D-IR Raman spectrometer, as part of the research effort of the group. They are also expected to carry out original research in astrochemistry/planetary science, in collaboration with the other members of the group, communicate the results of his/her research in scientific publications and at conferences, and contribute to the writing of research proposals in support of the activities of the group.

Successful applicants should have a Ph.D. or the equivalent degree in Physics, Chemistry, or a related field. Desired laboratory skills include experience with 1) ultrafast lasers, 2) ultra-high vacuum and surface-science techniques (e.g., cryogenic sample preparation and characterization), and 3) Raman and/or infrared spectroscopy. Experience in astrochemistry/astrobiology, programming (python, LabView), molecular dynamics, mass spectrometry, quantum mechanical prediction of spectral properties, would also be advantageous. The successful candidate is expected to be proficient with Microsoft office, and preferably also have experience with Origin and/or computer aided-design (CAD) software. The applicant should have strong communication skills (fluent in written and spoken English), be willing to work independently as well as work with, and mentor/supervise, graduate and undergraduate students in research, and have a strong track-record of publication in internationally-recognized scientific journals.

The appointment period is initially for one year but can be renewed based on availability of funds and satisfactory progress. The salary is competitive and commensurate with experience. The review of applications will begin October 1st (2021) and continue until the position is filled. Additional information regarding the UCF Astrochemistry Laboratory can be found at: https://sciences.ucf.edu/physics/bennett-lab/.

To apply, please prepare the following materials: 1) A cover letter (pdf) explaining their background, suitability, and interest in the project, and how this position fits in with their future plans, 2) Curriculum Vitae that includes a list of publications and conference talks given (pdf; publication list can be separate), 3) three letters of reference. These items can be sent to Prof. Christopher J. Bennett, Department of Physics, University of Central Florida, PSB 430, 4111 Libra Drive, Orlando, FL 32816-2385 (applications via email should be sent to: christopher.bennett@ucf.edu) .

About University of Central Florida and Orlando: The University of Central Florida (UCF) is a large public research university, UCF main campus is located on the outskirt of Orlando, a city of everlasting Summer.

Equal Employment Opportunity: As an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, UCF encourages all qualified applicants to apply, including women, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and members of traditionally underrepresented populations. UCF’s Equal Opportunity Statement can be viewed at: http://www.oie.ucf.edu/documents/PresidentsStatement.pdf.

Background Screening Statement: In connection with your application for employment, the University of Central Florida may procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.


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