The Science & Exploration Directorate, Solar System Exploration Division, Planetary Environments Laboratory (Code 699) is seeking a scientist to conduct research on the habitability and exobiology of planetary environments in support of long-term science goals related to the existence and distribution of life on Ocean Worlds.Learn more about this agency
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As a Research Space Scientist, specializing in Planetary Studies, you will formulate research plans and hypotheses, and develop novel or complex research approaches for studies of known Ocean Worlds (Enceladus, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto, and Titan) as well as potential Ocean Worlds (e.g., Triton, Pluto, Charon, Ceres). You will develop new investigations of the chemical, biochemical, geochemical, and/or isotopic compositions of these bodies with implications for habitable environments. This work is to comprise a program of experimental analysis of life processes, constraints, and conditions in the laboratory; leadership of field campaigns to planetary analog sites hosting extremophilic organisms; and/or development of planetary mission investigations and missions to explore the relevant environments in situ.
You will independently conceive, design, and propose research support to address problems of broad scope and complexity. This includes sub-dividing research activities into separate phases, analyzing the data, and interpreting results. Science research results will be disseminated through publication in technical reports/requirements documents, or via professional papers, invited talks and seminars, and presentations at scientific conferences. You will plan, execute, and report on original studies or ongoing investigations with varied, complex features that require a fresh approach to resolve new problems. You will build and lead teams to achieve these objectives in a collaborative environment.
You will also serve as the scientific lead for the development of new and complex approaches for conducting science investigations of Ocean Worlds and planetary bodies where geochemical processes can be linked to ocean worlds. You will provide significant contributions for current and future mission development, operations, and subsequent data analysis.
You will initiate activities to help develop scientific investigations and directions that combine the existing planetary habitability and chemistry, modeling, field campaign, and instrument development expertise in the Planetary Environments Laboratory and the Solar System Exploration Division with new directions in geo- and/or biochemical analysis of relevance to Ocean Worlds missions, as well as to mentor other team members in this area.
25% or less - Travel may be required for training or other work-related duties
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