LMU Munich Astrophysics Fraunhofer-Schwarzschild Postdoctoral Fellowships

Job Summary

Post-doctoral Positions and Fellowships
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Faculty of Physics - University Observatory
Number of Positions Available
Work Arrangement

Job Description

LMU Munich Astrophysics Fraunhofer-Schwarzschild Postdoctoral Fellowships

The University Observatory in the Faculty of Physics of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich (https://www.physik.lmu.de/en/research/astronomy-and-astrophysics-cosmology/) announces the opportunity for one or multiple Postdoctoral Fellowships. With this year’s call we are particularly looking for applicants in the areas of exoplanet science (theoretical or observational) or observational cosmology and structure formation. Scientists with a PhD degree in physics, astrophysics, or related fields, who are seeking an opportunity to develop an independent and innovative research program in these areas, are encouraged to apply.

The department operates a 2m observatory at Mt. Wendelstein, with instrumentation including a wide field imager (https://arxiv.org/abs/1408.2519), a multi-channel imager (https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2016SPIE.9908E..44L), and an upgraded version of the FOCES high resolution spectrograph stabilized by laser comb. As an option, we encourage applications that wish to utilize this facility, in which case applicants should include a brief description of their planned observing or instrumentation program. Postdoctoral Fellows at LMU also have access to observational data including from the Dark Energy Survey, the Vera C. Rubin Observatory’s Legacy Survey of Space and Time, Euclid, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Experiment, 4MOST, the South Pole Telescope, eROSITA, and MeerKAT. Fellows can utilize extensive computing facilities at LMU and at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre. 

Successful applicants will be paired with a primary and a secondary mentor to support their research program and their development as a scientist. The position includes opportunities for mentoring student researchers from the university's B.Sc. and M.Sc. programs in physics and astrophysics, and may include teaching opportunities as well.

We aim for the fellowship to commence by October 2023, with an initial appointment of 2+2 years for recent graduates and 3+2 years for experienced researchers. Different arrangements may be negotiated between successful applicants and their mentors. This year, the following mentors are available:

  • Prof. Ralf Bender, research group Extragalactic Astrophysics & Instrumentation
  • Prof. Til Birnstiel, research group Protoplanetary Disks & Planet Formation
  • Prof. Andreas Burkert, research group Computational Astrophysics
  • Dr. Klaus Dolag, research group Computational Astrophysics
  • Prof. Daniel Gruen, research group Astrophysics, Cosmology & Artificial Intelligence
  • Prof. Kevin Heng, research group Exoplanets and Exoclimes
  • Prof. Joseph Mohr, research group Cosmology and Structure Formation
  • Dr. Stella Seitz, research group Gravitational Lensing
  • Prof. Jochen Weller, research group Physical Cosmology

The University Observatory of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität is part of Munich’s vibrant and growing astrophysics research community that includes the European Southern Observatory headquarters, the Max Planck Institutes for Astrophysics, for Physics, for Extraterrestrial Physics, and for Plasma Physics, and the DFG Excellence Cluster ORIGINS. 

This Fellowship program is intended to provide aspiring researchers at the postdoctoral level with support by multiple mentors that will help them develop a research program connecting to and complementing research interests at the University Observatory. It is named after Joseph von Fraunhofer, who performed the first ever spectroscopic observations with an astronomical observatory at Munich, and Karl Schwarzschild, who was a graduate student and senior postdoc at LMU while first raising the hypothesis that the geometry of the Universe could be non-Euclidean. 

Salary and benefits are paid according to the German public service pay agreement TV-L E13. The advancement of women in science is an integral part of the university‘s policy. Therefore, women are especially encouraged to apply. Persons with disabilities will be given preference to other applicants with equal qualifications. German language skills are not required.

Applicants should prepare a cover letter and the following documents: CV, publication list, and a 3-page statement of research interests and plans. Applicants intending to use the Wendelstein observatory should include an additional brief description of their planned observational program. Further, applicants are asked to arrange three letters of recommendation. All documents should be submitted through AcademicJobsOnline (https://academicjobsonline.org/ajo/fellowship/22881) by November 6, 2022 for full consideration. Applications may also be considered for other job opportunities at the University Observatory Munich.

Application Details

Publication Start Date
2022 Sep 24
Application Deadline
2022 Nov 06


Daniel Grün