Four researcher positions related to Mars atmospheric science at NSSTC, UAE University

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Current state: Approved and Notify DPS Secretary
Department: National Space Science and Technology Center
City: Al Ain
State/Province: Abu Dhabi
Country: United Arab Emirates
Contact Person: Roland Young
Contact Email: [email protected]
Institution: United Arab Emirates University
Application Due Date: Sunday, September 06 2020
Web Link:

The National Space Science and Technology Center (NSSTC) at UAE University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates invites applications for four researcher positions (two Senior Researchers and two Postdoctoral Fellows) related to Mars atmospheric science, to join NSSTC’s Planetary Science group, part of its Earth and Planetary Science Unit.

For full details of each position, to see the required application materials for each one, and to apply, please search for “Mars” at => Postings => Job Title. Full consideration will be given to applications submitted by 6 September 2020, but the positions will remain open until filled.

Senior Researcher in Emirates Mars Mission related science: We seek an experienced scientist to propose and lead their own research program related to the Emirates Mars Mission (EMM), using EMM’s publicly-available dataset, and complementary to existing expertise within the group. The group’s existing Mars expertise is in planetary climate modelling, data assimilation, the dust cycle, and other physical processes relevant to Mars’ lower atmosphere and climate, so the Senior Researcher’s expertise could be in the upper atmosphere, surface or subsurface, polar science, ionosphere, atmospheric chemistry, solar-planetary interactions, or some other topic relevant to EMM.

Postdoctoral Fellow in Mars atmospheric science: This will focus on Mars dust storms, starting with imagery and dust climatological data from past and existing Mars missions, to gauge the feasibility of extracting information about Mars dust storms from such observations. Once EMM begins its science phase, the researcher will use EMM observations as quantitative constraints on key parameters related to the formation of dust storms, such as dust optical depth, atmospheric and surface temperatures, surface winds, etc. to generate a comprehensive database of Mars dust storms.

Senior Researcher in Earth and Mars atmospheric retrievals: The main goal of this position is to build expertise within the UAE in the area of planetary atmospheric retrievals. We seek an experienced scientist with expertise in UV/visible/IR and thermal IR/microwave atmospheric retrievals to lead a program building local Emirati expertise in atmospheric retrievals, which will involve software development, retrieval product generation, student training, and scientific analysis. The main scientific goals are (1) to convert EMM calibrated spectra into atmospheric quantities, using EMM’s publicly available dataset, building expertise among Emirati students and researchers in the methods and mathematical principles of atmospheric retrievals, radiative transfer modelling, and scientific programming, by involving them at all stages of the process, and (2) to contribute to NSSTC research and development projects in Earth observation where atmospheric retrievals are required.

Postdoctoral Fellow in Earth and Mars atmospheric retrievals: We seek a candidate with expertise in UV/visible/IR and/or thermal IR/microwave atmospheric retrievals to work alongside the Senior Researcher above, working towards the same goals.

In all cases there may also be the possibility to be involved in teaching UAEU’s new MSc in Space Science course, which is anticipated to run for the first time in Spring 2021.

NSSTC is a research and development institute of some 50 staff located on the UAE University campus in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates, about 90 minutes’ drive from Abu Dhabi and Dubai. UAEU is the largest and highest-ranked public university in the UAE.

The Center was established jointly by UAEU, the UAE Space Agency, and the UAE Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (ICT-Fund), motivated by UAEU’s desire to strengthen its role in and contribute to the needs of the nation in space science and technology, and to become a space science and technology hub for the region. NSSTC focuses on research and development, higher education, and community outreach. The Center’s priorities are three-fold: excellence in space science, leadership in space technology, and providing innovative solutions to a broad spectrum of societal challenges.

Currently nearing completion at UAEU is NSSTC’s Assembly, Integration, and Testing facility for satellites up to 250 kg, with the capability of building multiple satellites at a time. It will also support UAEU student CubeSat projects. The facility will include a cleanroom, thermal vacuum chamber, vibration system, and anechoic chamber. Once complete, this facility will also include a ground station and mission control. The Center’s other facilities include Global Navigation Satellite System and In Space Resources Utilisation laboratories, and NSSTC’s research staff also have access to UAEU’s supercomputing cluster.

NSSTC has expertise in spacecraft communications and precision positioning, on-board real-time systems, space situational awareness, global navigation systems, space resource utilization, geospatial information systems, Earth observation, and planetary science.