Postdoctoral Opportunity in Martian Geobiology

Posted on
Current state: Approved
Department: Exobiology group
City: Orleans
Country: France
Contact Person: Dr. Frances Westall
Contact Email: [email protected]
Institution: CNRS
Application Due Date: Wednesday, January 01 2014

The FP7-funded MASE project (Mars Analogue Sites on Earth) seeks to determine the survivability of anaerobic microorganisms isolated from extreme terrestrial environments and

subjected to various Mars-related environmental stresses. However, since it is unlikely that life could survive at the surface of the planet under its present oxidizing and radiation

conditions, the ultimate goal is to determine what biosignatures could be preserved in rocks dating from the time on Mars when life may have flourished at the surface (Early-Mid

Noachian). The environmentally-abused anaerobes will be artificially fossilized and processed to imitate potential microfossils in Noachian-age martian rocks and the ensuing

biosignatures will be analysed in order to determine what might be preserved.

We seek a biogeoscientist for a 3 year postdoctoral position starting in mid 2014 to participate in this exciting and hugely timely project to detect biosignatures on Mars. The

candidate should ideally have some experience in biogeology, for instance in microbe-mineral interactions, and the analytical techniques needed to analyse the microorganisms (electron

microscopy, GC-MS, HPLC, Raman/IR spectroscopy etc.). 

Interested candidates are requested to send their CVs by email to:

Dr. Frances Westall ([email protected])

Head Exobiology Group, CNRS-Centre de Biophysique Mol?culaire, Rue Charles Sadron, 45071 Orl?ans cedex 2, France