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    Selection for this position will be made at either the grade 12 or 13. If selection is made at the grade 12 level the selectee may be non-competitively promoted to the next higher level up to the grade 13 upon recommendation of the Professional Accomplishments Evaluation Committee ( PAEC)

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    This is the position of Astrophysicist in the High Energy Astrophysics Division (HEAD) of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.  The purpose of the position is to contribute to the work of the Science Mission Planning group in the Chandra X-ray Center (CXC), working with CXC staff and NASA to maximize scientific accomplishments of the mission; the primary responsibilities will be in mission planning and scheduling activities.  The employee will be expected to carry out scientific research in the field of X-ray astronomy. 

    Duties may include but are not limited to:

    1. Assist with day-to-day activities of the Mission Planning Group by working on technical issues pertaining to long-term and short-term schedules, representing Mission Planning in technical meetings, supporting technical review of Chandra proposals and observing plans, and working with group members to develop solutions.
    1. Assist with long-term and unanticipated activities of the Mission Planning Group. Carry out specific investigations of science planning activities and procedures, including solutions to unanticipated spacecraft or instrument events. Conduct the analysis for these studies, developing computer algorithms as necessary and supervise their implementation, testing, and documentation. Interpret the results of these investigations, doing theoretical calculations when appropriate. Work actively to exchange ideas with other groups and institutions involved in similar activities. Participate in the process of hiring new team members, as needed.
    1. Prepare long- and short-term schedules, review load products, and interact with observers and CXC staff to ensure the scientific goals of proposed observations are achieved. Interface closely with the CXC Flight Operations Team (FOT) to ensure timely scheduling of approved Chandra observations.
    1. Determine relevant and fruitful areas for research, and conceive, propose, and carry out observational and data analysis efforts directed towards a wide range of astrophysical systems utilizing X-ray and other ground- and space-based facilities. Formulate plans and hypotheses in areas which are new and unexplored, or which have presented critical obstacles in the past, and carry them through to completion. Prepare research grant proposals.
    1. Communicate research results through preparation of papers for publication in scientific journals and/or conference proceedings. Give presentations at professional meetings. Maintain awareness of new problems and techniques through communication with other scientists.
    1. Participate in overall astronomy programs of the Chandra X-ray Center (CXC), the High Energy Astrophysics Division, and in overall scientific programs at SAO. Interact with scientists at SAO and other institutions to coordinate activities such as scientific observations and analysis, software development, and overall planning in astronomy.
    1. Referee papers submitted to scientific journals and participate on NASA peer review committees.
    1. Perform other duties as required.

    Travel Required

    Occasional travel - Required occasional Travel.

    Supervisory status


    Promotion Potential


This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/588094700. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.