Postdoc position: novel interferometric sensing techniques and seismic noise mitigation in a torsion balance

Job Offer from September 12, 2023

We, the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute, AEI) in Hannover, Germany, are looking for a Postdoc in Physics or a closely related field to continue our work on the construction of a torsion balance facility for the development of laser interferometric inertial sensors. The project is part of the “Interferometry in Space” group within the department “Laser Interferometry and Gravitational Wave Astronomy”.

The work includes

  • Design of compact laser interferometers for the readout and control of a torsion balance
  • Electrostatic read out and actuation of test masses
  • Design and implementation of feedback control loops (digital and analog)
  • Identification and mitigation of noise sources that are currently limiting the performance
  • Optimization of the current inertial member
  • Analyzing the results
  • Writing scientific publications

Your profile

PhD in Physics or related discipline. Good English, willingness and capability to work in an international team and to conduct careful and detailed experimental work. Previous experience in the topics above is desirable. In particular, the ideal candidate should have prior experience in one or more of the following topics:

  • Laser interferometry (experimental)
  • Analog and digital electronics
  • Feedback control
  • Vacuum systems and design of vacuum compatible setups
  • Mechanical systems such as pendulums for vibration isolation, torsion balances, etc.

If you are interested in experimental work, enjoy working in dynamic, interdisciplinary groups, are creative and motivated, and show initiative, we look forward to receiving your application

Application Process

To apply, please submit your application via our job portal

You will be asked to upload a cover letter, curriculum vitae, university transcripts, a statement of research interests, a list of publications (if available), and your PhD thesis. Applicants will need to indicate the names of two referees for recommendation letters. Please fill in the contact information for the referees well before the deadline, so that reference letters can be received in time. Referees will receive an email with instructions on how to upload their letters. In case of technical problems with the application form, please contact

Candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. The deadline for full consideration is September 30, 2023, including reception of reference letter. Applications will be considered until the position is filled.

Payment is according to 100 % of the pay scale of public services in Germany TVöD Bund E13.

Equal Opportunities

The Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics is an equal opportunity employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin. The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals. The AEI and the Max Planck Society welcome persons with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and ideas who embrace and value diversity and inclusivity (Code of Conduct). The institute promotes a healthy work-life balance by offering all employees a family support service.

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