Skip to main content
View All Vacancies

Senior Research Associate in Supernova Cosmology

Location:  Bailrigg
Salary:   £38,205 to £44,263 (Full time, indefinite until 31st March 2027)
Closing Date:   Monday 04 March 2024
Interview Date:   Friday 22 March 2024
Reference:  0061-24

The Lancaster University Physics Department seeks to appoint a postdoctoral researcher in supernova cosmology.

The work will make use of new data from the future Rubin Observatory, which will carry out the Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST), the future spectroscopic instrument 4MOST, and the Euclid mission (launched in July 2023). These facilities will cover thousands of square degrees in common in their wide surveys plus coordinated deep fields, and together will revolutionise the use of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) for cosmology. This postdoctoral position is particularly focused on exploiting Lancaster’s involvement in the Time Domain Extragalactic Survey (TiDES) project, which will use 4MOST to obtain spectra of tens of thousands of transients discovered by LSST and other surveys. 

In addition to assisting with the real-time operation of TiDES, you will contribute to one or more of the following goals: (i) creating the first TiDES sample of SNe Ia for cosmology, (ii) exploring correlations between SN Ia spectral features and luminosity, with the aim of reducing uncertainties in cosmological measurements, and (iii) collecting and analysing new data on host galaxies of SNe Ia, combining spectroscopy and optical-NIR imaging to further control systematic effects.

This position is funded for 3 years and comes with funding for travel and computing. 

People with experience in optical/ NIR surveys for astronomical transients and in particular the use of SNe Ia for cosmology are encouraged to apply. Experience with reduction and analysis of spectroscopic data is also desirable. Prospective candidates are encouraged to contact Prof. Isobel Hook ( for further information on the position before submitting their application. 

You will work under the supervision of Prof. Isobel Hook, and will join the Observational Astrophysics group at Lancaster. Members of the group pursue research in diverse and complementary topics including transients, high-redshift galaxies, star formation, galaxy evolution, multi-messenger astrophysics, gravitational waves and citizen science projects. You will be welcome to participate in group research activities. 

You must have earned a PhD in astronomy or a related field by the start date. Further criteria are given in the attached job description and person specification. To apply, you should submit (1) a curriculum vitae with publications list; (2) a statement describing your interest in and suitability for the position, not to exceed 2 pages; and (3) a list containing contact information for 3 reference letter writers. Letters of reference will be requested for shortlisted candidates. 

Lancaster University Physics is strongly committed to an inclusive work environment. We welcome those who would contribute to the further diversification of our department.

Email details to a friend
Further details:

Please note: unless specified otherwise in the advert, all advertised roles are UK based.

Find out what it's like to work at Lancaster University, including information on our wide range of employee benefits, support networks and our policies and facilities for a family-friendly workplace.

The University recognises and celebrates good employment practice undertaken to address all inequality in higher education.

We warmly welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of their age, religion, gender identity or expression, race, disability or sexual orientation, and are committed to promoting diversity, and equality of opportunity. 

Stonewall Global Diversity Champion
Gender Charter - Athena Swan Bronze Award
Race Charter - Race Equality Charter Working Towards
HR Excellent in Research
Disability Confident Employer