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Postdoc position in Heidelberg on Gaia and SDSS/SEGUE

Postdoc position in Heidelberg on Gaia and SDSS/SEGUE

21 April 2005

As part of a new research group at the Max-Planck-Institute for Astronomy (MPIA) in Heidelberg, a postdoc position is available to work with Coryn Bailer-Jones on Gaia and SDSS/SEGUE. SEGUE is the recently approved extension of the SDSS project to the Galactic plane. The position is concerned with the development and application of astrophysical parameter estimation methods for both Gaia and SEGUE.

The project could include:

  • investigation of multidimensional statistical methods for estimating stellar parameters from photometric and spectroscopic data;
  • development of these methods specifically for Gaia using simulated data, investigating such issues as: optimal combination of photometric, spectroscopic and astrometric data; classification of binaries; efficient detection of outliers (e.g. new types of objects);
  • application of these methods to SDSS/SEGUE spectra (and photometry) to determine stellar parameters (in particular Teff, logg, [Fe/H], [alpha/Fe], line-of-sight extinction);
  • identification of stellar populations within SEGUE to address various issues in Galactic structure, e.g. identification of disk or halo overdensities, tracing chemical evolution/distribution in the Galaxy;
  • study of unsupervised (clustering) methods for uncovering new structure in large data sets.

Together with the Centre for Astronomy (ZAH, formerly ARI) at Heidelberg University, the MPIA has put together a significant group to participate both in the Gaia data processing and to exploit the SEGUE data. Coryn Bailer-Jones is a member of the Gaia Science Team and leads the Gaia Classification Working Group. The work on Gaia and SEGUE naturally complement each other, with SEGUE both serving as a test and development ground for Gaia as well as providing scientific returns far in advance of Gaia. Initial data for SEGUE have already been obtained and the collaboration officially starts on 1 June 2005. An approximate 50/50 split is foreseen between Gaia and SEGUE, although the successful candidate will have some freedom to determine this and to define projects.

The position is initially available for one year with an extension of two years beyond this possible. Applications should include a CV and list of publications and should be sent by mail or email to

Coryn Bailer-Jones
Max-Planck-Institut fuer Astronomie
Koenigstuhl 17
D-69117 Heidelberg
email: calj AT
phone: +49 6221 528224

Informal enquiries are also welcome. The position is available immediately (with a start date up to September 2005 possible) and applications will be considered until the position is filled.

For more information see:

Gaia Classification Working Group homepage
Gaia homepage
SDSS homepage
MPIA homepage

The Max Planck Society is an equal opportunity employer. Applications from women, disabled people and minority groups are particularly welcome.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
9-Dec-2021 14:16 UT

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