ALMA Operations Astronomer



ALMA Operations Astronomer

The Program Management Group:

Successful candidates will work in the ALMA Program Management Group within the JAO Department of Science Operations. The JAO Department of Science Operations (DSO) is responsible for the ALMA observations. It consists of three groups: the Array Operations Group, the Program Management Group (PMG) and the Data Management Group (DMG). The PMG is responsible for scheduling and tracking of projects as well as data quality assurance during the observations.

Duties and Responsibilities:

ALMA Science Operations astronomers are based primarily in the ALMA offices in Santiago, with regular trips to the ALMA Operations Support Facility near San Pedro de Atacama to serve as Astronomer on Duty (AoD). They also travel occasionally to the ALMA Regional Centers (ARCs) to work with the ALMA partners. The responsibilities of the Operations astronomers include:

• Scheduling and executing observations

• Developing and executing the ALMA Calibration plan

• Tracking the progress of observing programs

• Data processing and quality assurance of ALMA data

• Developing documentation needed for science operations as well as the content of the JAO web pages

• Conducting technical reviews of ALMA proposals

• Testing of software tools used for Science Operations

Before ALMA full operations (2013), the Science Operations astronomers also support the Commissioning and Science Verification team. They participate in tests and evaluations of the ALMA control software and software tools for science operations, and in the planning of full science operations.

The successful candidate will be expected and encouraged to conduct astronomical research. Research in areas directed towards use of ALMA will be strongly encouraged.

Professional Requirements/Qualifications:

Applicants for this position shall fulfill the following requirements:

• PhD in Astronomy or Physics with at least three (3) years of experience in the field after the PhD.

• Experience in millimeter-observations (single dish or interferometry).

• Previous experience in operating radio interferometers and/or single-dish telescopes and instruments is an asset.

• Experience in data reduction of radio astronomical data (using any of the standard packages GILDAS, AIPS, MIRIAD, CASA, etc) is an asset.

• Fluency in the English language (oral and written).

• Proven good interpersonal communication skills and ability to work in a multidisciplinary team, including operators, astronomers and system/software engineers.

• Proven track record of scientific research.

Due to travel requirements and work at high altitudes, a successful high altitude medical check is a necessary pre-employment condition for this position.

Duty Station / Location of Position:

Duty station: Santiago and the Operations Support Facility (OSF) near San Pedro de Atacama, Chile. The successful applicant will be required to spend a significant amount of time working at the ALMA sites at the OSF (2.900m elevation) and occasionally at the Array Operations Site (5.000m elevation). Contracts and Applications

ALMA International Staff will be recruited as employees of either ESO or AUI/NRAO or NAOJ. Each of these employers offer competitive remuneration packages including a competitive salary as well as comprehensive social benefits, and provide financial support in relocating families. Furthermore, if applicable, an expatriation allowance as well as some other allowances will be added.

Applications must be completed in English and should include a cover letter, CV and three letters of reference.

Applicants submitting their application to ESO are invited to apply online at The three letters of reference shall be sent to

Applicants submitting their application, CV and reference letters to NRAO are invited to apply online at

Applicants submitting their application, CV and reference letters to NAOJ are invited to apply via e-mail to Tetsuo Hasegawa:, Director of the NAOJ Chile Observatory.

Deadline for receipt of applications to be considered for the position is August 6, 2012.

For further information please consult (, as well as the ESO, NRAO, and/or NAOJ Home Pages (, (, or (

ESO, NAOJ and the NRAO are Equal Opportunity Employers. The post is equally open to suitably qualified female and male applicants.