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Cal. State Fullerton: Post Doctoral Associate in Experimental Gravitational-Wave Physics

The following information was provided by Cal. State Fullerton


$67,000.00 - $73,130.00 Annually




The Nicholas and Lee Begovich Center for Gravitational-Wave Physics and Astronomy (GWPAC) at California State University, Fullerton welcomes applications for a Postdoctoral Associate to conduct research aimed at identifying and evaluating suitable locations in the United States for the next-generation laser interferometer gravitational-wave observatory, Cosmic Explorer.

The successful applicant will carry out research using Geographic Information Systems (such as a suitability analysis), consider physical and cultural information, collect seismic, electromagnetic, acoustic, and other data in the field, and analyze and summarize the information to evaluate locations for their suitability for hosting a Cosmic Explorer Observatory. The outcomes of this research will advance gravitational-wave science in the US and inform the Cosmic Explorer design. A Ph.D. in physics, geophysics, engineering, geology, geography, or a related field is required.

The successful applicant will be supported by NSF Award 2308985 and will work with PI Joshua Smith and Co-PI Geoffrey Lovelace and students and collaborate with personnel from the University of Arizona, the University of Oregon, The University of Minnesota, Syracuse University, and Caltech and the broader Cosmic Explorer Project. Women and members of underrepresented groups are especially encouraged to apply.

GWPAC faculty members include Al Agnew, Geoffrey Lovelace, Jocelyn Read, and Director Joshua Smith. Current areas of focus in GWPAC include planning for next-generation gravitational-wave astrophysics, experimental and theoretical development toward the next generation of gravitational-wave observatories; experimental gravitational-wave detector optics; searches for binary systems with black holes and neutron stars with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO); waveform modeling, including neutron stars with realistic equations of state, modes, and tides; numerical relativity, including simulations of merging black holes and contributions to the development of SpECTRE, a next-generation numerical-relativity code.

*Please be aware that funding for this position is awarded through a Grant/Contract over a specified period. Employment for this position beyond current Grant/Contract funding is contingent upon continued funding.


To establish and carry out a collaborative, multidisciplinary research program associated with the gravitational-wave observatory Cosmic Explorer that complements existing strengths in GWPAC.

  • To conduct computer-based Geographic Information Systems research (such as a suitability analysis) and field-based location assessment research (such as seismometer deployment and measurement).

  • To participate in education and community building associated with gravitational-wave science.

  • To participate in the Cosmic Explorer Project.

  • Other duties as assigned.


The ability to communicate and work effectively with ethnically and culturally diverse campus and off-campus communities.

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.

  • Knowledge of gravitational-wave physics, topology and seismology, field work, and/or Geographic Information Systems preferred.


  • Must be enrolled in a Ph.D. program or have a minimum Ph.D. in physics, geophysics, engineering, geology, geography, or a related field.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: Prolonged sitting in front of and using a computer; use of keyboard and mouse, walking, talking, hearing, pulling, bending, and may involve carrying 20-30 pounds of objects/materials. Travel to remote locations in the United States. Long days outdoors in remote locations. Digging of small holes (~0.5m in depth). This job does not include exposure to extreme noise levels, or require extensive reaching, stooping, or kneeling. BENEFITS: Health, dental, vision, life/AD&D, health care flex plan, LTD, educational reimbursement, vacation, sick leave, holiday, credit union and retirement plan. All benefits will be administered according to policies and procedures.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE: Your application will be considered incomplete without the submission of a:

  • A curriculum vitae

  • A list of 2-3 professional references that could be contacted

  • A statement of research and career interests

CSU Fullerton, Auxiliary Services Corporation (ASC) is committed with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practice. This means hiring diverse talent and ensuring employees understand and respect differences around us. ASC is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer and a member of E-Verify. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex including sexual orientation and gender identity, national origin, disability, protected Veteran Status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.

If you are a qualified individual with a disability or a disabled veteran, you have the right to request an accommodation if you are unable or limited in your ability to use or access our career center as a result of your disability. To request an accommodation, contact a Human Resources Representative at (657) 278-4117.

A background check (including a criminal records check) must be completed satisfactorily before any candidate can be offered a position with the ASC. Failure to satisfactorily complete the background check may affect the application status of applicants or continued employment of current ASC employees who apply for the position.

Note: CSUF/ASC follows the direction of the CSU Policy related to COVID-19 vaccination. See FAQ Vaccines for more information.


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This WIOA Title I financially assisted program or activity is an equal opportunity employer/program. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. If you need special assistance to participate in this program, please call (714) 480-6500. TDD/TTY users, please call the California Relay Service at (800) 735-2922 or 711. Please call 72 hours in advance to allow the OC Workforce Solutions Center to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to this program.

The views, information, or opinions expressed by the organization(s) mentioned are solely those of the individuals involved and do not necessarily represent those of the County of Orange and its employees.

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