Contact:  act[AT]esa.intLocation:  Noordwijk, the Netherlands
Traineeship Opportunity for “Young Graduate Trainees”
Advanced Concepts in Condensed Matter Physics
Overview of the Division’s mission
The Future Preparation and Strategic Studies Office ensures the overall coordination, coherence and performance of programme and corporate studies in support of the preparation of the Agency’s future activities, in line with its long-term strategic objectives and priorities, as well as coordinate strategy development of trans-Directorate initiatives. In particular, this includes the General Studies Programme (GSP www.esa.int/gsp), implementing studies for the preparation of new missions, and the Advanced Concepts Team (ACT, www.esa.int/act), tasked to monitor, perform and foster research on advanced space systems, innovative concepts and working methods.
Within the European Space Agency, the ACT is engaging in collaborative research relations with university institutes and research centres, focusing on advanced research topics of potential strategic interest to the space sector and in experimenting with new forms of teamwork. In order to achieve this goal a multidisciplinary research environment is provided, in which young scientific and engineering post-doctoral and post-graduate researchers carry out work on emerging technologies and innovative concepts. Candidates are strongly encouraged to visit the website of the team to obtain more information about the team in preparation of their application and interview.
Overview of the field of activity proposed
Condensed Matter Theory (CMT) deals with the properties of matter in condensed phases such as in liquids, plasmas and solids. It draws upon quantum, electromagnetic, thermal and statistical physics extensively and overlaps with material science, nanotechnology, and chemistry; in a sense it is mesoscopic physics, as opposed to micro- or macroscopic, and therefore benefits both from theoretical progress on the small scale and applications on the large scale. Due to this breadth and applicability CMT has grown into the most active branch of contemporary physics.
The successful candidate will perform research in the field of Condensed Matter Theory and especially its applications to space systems. A specific aim of this project lies in exploring aspects of the connection between high energy and gravitational physics (AdS/CMT) that has proven promising as a framework for understanding the properties of condensed matter systems. Depending on the particular background and interests of the candidate, the focus can evolve to different projects in CMT.
For example some research directions include:
– Applications of nanostructured materials to space systems
– Quantum emulation of gravitational physics (analogue gravity)
The successful candidate will be a member of the Advanced Concepts Team (http://www.esa.int/gsp/ACT/index.html) and is therefore expected to contribute to the development and the assessment of new concepts and technologies for space applications in close interaction with ACT researchers who work on a broad range of disciplines including, informatics, artificial intelligence, climate modelling, energy systems, fundamental physics, biomimetics, computational management science and mission analysis. Based on her/his detailed background and interests and the opportunities and needs of the team, the successful candidate will be involved in a number of other ACT initiatives (including studies conducted via the Ariadna scheme, http://www.esa.int/gsp/ACT/ariadna/index.html) and participate in reporting and communicating results of the team (internally and externally).
Educational and other requirements
Applicants should have just completed, or be in their final year of a university course at Masters level in a technical or scientific discipline, specifically in Physics or related fields. Applicants should have a good theoretical background and strong interest in condensed matter, quantum physics. Desirable would be candidate to have theoretical background in general relativity.
Applicants should show a genuine interest in applied academic research, together with sound analytical skills, avid curiosity and a natural aptitude to self-motivation and teamwork. Applicants should have good interpersonal and communication skills and should be able to work in a multi-cultural environment, both independently and as part of a team. Applicants must be fluent in English and/or French, the working languages of the Agency. A good proficiency in English is required.
How can I apply?
Please fill in the online application form.
Please note that only one application may be submitted for the YGT Scheme.
The YGT Scheme is open to recently qualified young men and women who are nationals of one of the following states:
Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK, or Canada as a Cooperating State, Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia as European Cooperating States (ECS).