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Job advertisements in the Planetary Sciences Group

Research Associate (m/f/d)

Full-time employment, permanent, pay group 13 TV-L FU

Identifier: Planetologie-WiMi_04/2021


Application deadline: February 8th 2021



The Planetary Sciences and Remote Sensing Research Group at the Institute of Geological Sciences of Freie Universität Berlin is inviting applications for a permanent PhD Research Associate position. The research group participates in various ESA, NASA and JAXA space missions, through involvement in spacecraft instrumentation. Some projects are funded within the framework of the national space programme by the German Aerospace Center (DLR). Other projects are funded by the German Research Funding Organisation (DFG) and the European Research Council (ERC). The research group maintains two laboratories with extensive equipment.


Job discription:

As a Research Associate, you will conduct independent research in the field of computer-based and theoretical modelling of processes in the Solar System, and support the research group in the field of space mission observation planning and data evaluation. You will also be involved in the planning and implementation of courses for the international Master's programme "Planetary Sciences & Remote Sensing". In addition, you will also be asked to actively participate in the committees of the Department of Earth Sciences.

In detail, the tasks include:

  • Independent research in the field of computer-based and theoretical modelling of processes in the solar system, especially concerning the dynamics of impacts on planetary surfaces and cosmic dust dynamics.
  • Observation planning and data analysis for space missions in which the research group is involved, especially in the fields of imaging observations (planets, moons, rings, asteroids, comets) and cosmic dust dynamics.
  • Establishing and maintaining scientific collaborations, and interdisciplinary linking of research results, within the university as well as nationally and international colaborators, presentations at internal and international events and conferences.
  • Acquisition of third-party funding.
  • Planning and implementation of courses within the framework of the international Master's programme "Planetary Sciences & Remote Sensing", with focus on planetary physics (e.g. planetary magnetic fields and plasma, celestial mechanics and space missions.)
  • Supervision and advising of doctoral candidates, students and (visiting) scientists.


Requirements of employment:

  • Completed university degree and Ph.D. in Planetary Sciences, Physics, Astronomy or Geology.

Professional experience:

  • At least 5 years of professional experience
  • Leadership experience


Desired experience: 

  • Very good programming skills (modelling of dynamic processes)
  • Very good knowledge of English (C1 level)
  • Proof of successful acquisition of third-party funding
  • Experience in teaching and in the supervision of doctoral students
  • Very good publication record
  • Work experience abroad is an advantage


Open position advertised of the Freie Universität Berlin (in German)

Address for applications:

Please submit your application, together with suitable supporting documents, stating the identifier, in PDF format (preferably as one document) by e-mail to Prof. Dr. Frank Postberg: plansec@zedat.fu-berlin.de, or by post to:


Freie Universität Berlin

Fachbereich Geowissenschaften

Institut für Geologische Wissenschaften

FR Planetologie und Fernerkundung

Prof. Dr. Frank Postberg

Malteserstr. 74-100, Haus D

12249 Berlin


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Job advertisement from: 10.01.2021