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Research Associate in Quantum Imaging Technologies

Heriot-Watt University - School Of Engineering & Physical Sciences

Edinburgh, Scotland

Key duties and responsibilities

The successful applicant will take the lead role in our effort to develop quantum technologies. They will be responsible for the generation and implementation of ideas related to the research area. They will develop the experiments and systems and be responsible for writing research papers on the work. They will be expected to participate in our public engagement activities and present the research at conferences. They will also be responsible for the supervision of graduate and undergraduate members of the research groups.

The post holder is required to:

  • Assist the development of student research skills, and be expected to contribute to the assessment of student knowledge in the context of teaching and supervision duties. Could be expected to contribute to specialist courses such as research methods and equipment;
  • Develop research objectives and proposals for own or joint research with the assistance of a mentor, if required. Conduct individual and collaborative research projects, making use of relevant research techniques and methods. Disseminate results of research in peer reviewed journals and conferences, and/or other appropriate media. Continue to update personal knowledge and to develop skills within own specialist research area. Maintain written records of research results and progress generated intellectual property and data analysis. Contribute to the production of research reports and publications;
  • Write research reports and publications. Analyse and interpret the results of own research and generate original ideas bases on outcomes. Prepare proposals and applications to external bodies, e.g. for funding purposes. Use initiative and creativity to identify areas for research, develop new research methods and extend the research portfolio;
  • Build internal contacts and participate in internal networks for the exchange of information and to form relationships for future collaboration. Work with academic colleagues on areas of shared research interest and contribute to collaborative decision making. Join external networks to share information and identify potential sources of funds;
  • Provide guidance as required to support staff, research students and any other students who may be assisting with the research;
  • Contribute, under supervision, to the planning of research projects, including the development of new grant/contract proposals. Make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding and form relationships for future collaboration;
  • We are looking for a creative and highly motivated researcher willing to work as part of a team;
  • The ideal candidate will have a strong theoretical understanding and an experimental background in one or more of the following fields, lasers, imaging systems, singe-photon counting;
  • Good communication skills and an appropriate publication record are essential;
  • General tasks will involve scientific research; analysis and interpretation of data; daily oversight of the activities of postgraduate and undergraduate project students in the laboratory; communication with other investigators involved in this collaborative project; preparation of scientific papers; presentation of research at conferences;
  • The successful candidate will be expected to conduct and lead their own experiments whilst also supervising the activities of junior group members and PhD students;
  • Responsibilities will also include assistance in the day-to-day maintenance of the experimental facilities, liaising with companies and external collaborators;
  • The successful candidate is also expected to be involved in our outreach activities, with roles that can be tuned to the specific preferences of the candidate but will involve for example interviews, talks for the general public and preparation of experimental demonstrators.

Education, Qualifications and Experience

Essential Criteria:

  • Possess and maintain sufficient breadth or depth of specialist discipline knowledge and or research methods and techniques to work in own area;
  • Experience of working in a multi-cultural work environment;
  • Experience of working in a Higher Education or similar environment;
  • Applicants should hold a PhD in a relevant area of lasers, imaging systems, singe-photon counting or related subject (or a thesis submitted by the start date of the project);
  • A record of high quality publications, and evidence of contribution to the writing of these publications proportionate to opportunity;
  • Appropriate publication record for stage in career;
  • Experience with lasers and/or imaging sytstems applied to research in a relevant discipline;
  • Must have proven academic ability and a demonstrable high level of technical competence in experimental science and the analysis/modelling of the results;
  • Strong theoretical understanding and thorough grounding in experimental techniques relevant to the project;
  • Ability to articulate research work, both in technical reports/papers and by oral presentation;
  • Ability to formulate and progress work on their own initiative;
  • Evidence of research ability: problem solving, flexibility;
  • Must be able to work as part of a team on the experiments at Heriot-Watt and more widely with the collaborators at other Universities;
  • Experience in writing and managing peer-reviewed papers;
  • Experience in public presentations of scientific results (e.g. conference talks);
  • Experience with data processing and instrument control in Matlab, Labview or Python.

Desirable Criteria:

  • Evidence of ability to present work effectively in person, e.g. at conferences and seminars.;
  • Experience in leading the writing of scientific papers;
  • Experience of experimental design and integration;
  • Evidence of ability, subject to opportunity, to guide other researchers, e.g. PhD students and undergraduate project students;
  • Experience of research-student supervision;
  • Capability to be self-directed and think innovatively;
  • Energy and enthusiasm for the project.

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