In the Science, Engineering and Technology Group of KU Leuven, Faculty of Science, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Institute of Astronomy and the Gravitational Wave Centre there is a full-time academic tenure-track vacancy to bridge the areas of Asteroseismology, Binary Evolution & Gravitational Wave Progenitors. We are looking for internationally oriented candidates with an excellent research record and with educational competency within the fields of Stellar Structure & Evolution and of Asteroseismology. The Institute of Astronomy (https://fys.kuleuven.be/ster) and the Gravitational Wave Centre (https://fys.kuleuven.be/gwc) are based on Campus Arenberg and constitute a strong and vibrant community of about 120 scientists, engineers, and support staff delivering ground-breaking research in astrophysics and in theoretical physics covering topics in instrumentation, observations, theory, and modelling. Our specific research themes include asteroseismology, the evolution of single and binary stars, exoplanets, theory and observations of black holes, gravitational wave physics, early-Universe cosmology, and astronomical instrumentation. We are highly active in national and international networks and take up leading and supporting roles in several high-profile research projects supported by national and international funding organisations, such as the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) and the European Research Council (ERC). With this vacancy we wish to support the new Gravity research initiative of the department, by imputing asteroseismic modelling of massive stars into the study of progenitors and electromagnetic counterparts of gravitational wave sources. With this initiative, the department is heavily involved in the dedicated BlackGEM telescope array and in the Einstein Telescope project, as well as in the ESA Gaia, PLATO, and LISA space missions. The successful candidate will develop novel computational models of stellar interiors and simulations that predict and help interpret observations from these large current and future facilities. We also lead educational Master programmes. The Master of Astronomy & Astrophysics offers a wide range of courses on the subfields of astronomy and astrophysics, with emphasis on research methodologies, whilst the Master of Space Studies is designed to deliver skilled and highly educated professionals to the thriving international space sector. Tracks within the Master of Physics connected to this vacancy concentrate on string theory, cosmology, and gravitational wave physics. We are a strong community with a clear vision and a supportive and collaborative working environment, underpinned by a solid research infrastructure, extensive national and international networks, and a wide array of stable, long-term research funding opportunities.
- You have a proven track record in at least one of the following topics:
- Asteroseismic Modelling of Massive Stars;
- Theory of Stellar Evolution & Binary Population Synthesis;
- Simulations of Gravitational Wave Progenitors.
- You will be expected to become an expert in all three domains and your research plan will be expected to elaborate on how you will achieve the integration of these three areas.
- You will be based at the Institute of Astronomy and set up effective collaborations with the Gravity research initiative around the Einstein Telescope project and the LISA space mission, and with other initiatives within and outside of the Department.
- You will utilise your ability to develop compelling research proposals and acquire competitive research funding, as well as competitive time on the Flemish Supercomputer.
- You will supervise PhD students to the highest standard.
- You will strive for excellence in your research and will provide a clear contribution to the continued development of the Department of Physics and Astronomy.
- You will deliver high-quality education within your assigned areas, with a clear commitment to the quality of our programmes.
- You will contribute to the pedagogic project of the Faculty of Science and the University through the supervision of Master theses and as a promotor of PhD students.
- You will develop your teaching practice in accordance with KU Leuven's vision on activating and researched-based education and will make use of the professional development opportunities offered by the Faculty and the University.
- Your teaching assignment will be limited during the first years of your appointment and will be extended to Bachelor-level education after the five initial years. From the academic year 2024-2025 you will lecture the two 6 ECTS courses Stellar Structure & Evolution and Asteroseismology in the Master Astronomy & Astrophysics.
- You are active in science communication and outreach within the university, throughout Flanders, and worldwide.
- You provide scientific, social, and internal services to KU Leuven, as well as to international space science organisations.
- You provide advice and support to researchers and PhD students in the Group Science & Technology of KU Leuven.
- You have a PhD in Astrophysics or Physics and preferably a minimum of 3 years postdoctoral research experience by September 2024.
- You have a strong and international research profile. The quality of your research is proven by publications in prominent international peer-reviewed journals.
- International research experience is a strong asset.
- You can show your growth potential with academic references of the highest standards.
- You demonstrate qualities related to academic education. Teaching experience is a strong advantage.
- You possess organisational skills and have a collaborative attitude. You also have leadership abilities within a university context.
- A good command of English is required. KU Leuven provides courses in academic English.
- The official administrative language used at KU Leuven is Dutch. If you are not fluent in Dutch at the start of your employment, KU Leuven will provide language training to enable you to take part in meetings.
- Before teaching courses in Dutch, you will be given the opportunity to learn Dutch to the required standard.
- We are offering full-time employment in an intellectually stimulating environment. KU Leuven is a research-intensive, internationally oriented university that carries out both fundamental and applied scientific research. Our university is highly inter- and multidisciplinary, with a focus on international excellence. We actively work together with research partners in Belgium and abroad and provide our students with an academic education that is based on high-quality scientific research.
- You will work in Leuven, a historic, dynamic and lively city located in the heart of Belgium, within 20 minutes from Brussels, the capital of the European Union, and less than two hours from Paris, London and Amsterdam.
- KU Leuven is well set to welcome foreign professors and their family and provides practical support with regard to immigration & administration, housing, childcare, learning Dutch, partner career coaching, ...
- To facilitate scientific onboarding and accelerate research in the first phase a starting grant of 110.000 euro is offered to new professors without substantial other funding, appointed for at least 50%.
- We are offering a tenure-track position where you will be appointed as assistant professor for a period of 5 years; after this period and a positive evaluation, you will be permanently appointed (or tenured) as an associate professor.
The Institute of Astronomy
The Gravitational Wave Centre
For more information please contact prof. dr. Conny Aerts, tel.: +32 16 32 70 28, mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or prof. dr. Piet Van Duppen, tel.: +32 16 32 72 72, mail: email@example.com. For problems with online applying, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
You are expected to add the following documents to your application (more information is available on the KU Leuven job site):
- your biosketch in which you indicate your added value as an academic for research, education and service to society of your past career and of your future activities (maximum 2 pages);
- a file with your five most important publications or achievements;
- an extensive cv including a full publication list and names and contact emails of at least 3 academic reference persons
- your research plan with focus on the development of your research line and research team in relation to collaboration with fellow researchers in the department and, more specifically, the Gravity research initiative (maximum 5 pages);
- your vision on academic education and its organization (maximum 2 pages);
- your contribution to society by outreach and public communication about science and technology, internal representation in boards and councils and service activities directly in relation to your developed expertise (maximum 1 page);
- your vision on leadership (maximum 1 page).
KU Leuven is committed to creating a diverse environment and is therefore an equal opportunity employer. It explicitly encourages candidates from groups that are currently underrepresented at the university to submit their applications.
KU Leuven places great importance on research integrity and ethical conduct and will therefore ask you to sign an integrity statement uponappointment.
KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at diversiteit.HR@kuleuven.be.