One Postdoctoral Contract Mini-Halpha WKs 2024 (PS-2024-005)

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The IAC (Tenerife) announces ONE postdoctoral contract to work on the project linked to the line of research “Black holes, neutron stars, white dwarfs and their environments: Mini-Halpha WKs”. The contract is funded by the project ”Mini-HaWKs: a pilot survey to unveil dormant black holes”, supported by the Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (MICINN) with reference PID2022-143331NB-100 and led by Prof. Jorge Casares.

Research topics at the IAC include most areas of astrophysics: Solar Physics (FS), Exoplanetary System and Solar System (SEYSS), Stellar and Interstellar Physics (FEEI), The Milky Way and The Local Group (MWLG), Formation and Evolution of Galaxies (FYEG), and Cosmology and Astroparticles (CYA-CTA). All of these are supported by an ambitious instrumentation programme. In 2020, the IAC was granted by the Spanish Government the status of Severo Ochoa Center of Excellence, a prestigious recognition awarded for the third time to the IAC as a leading research institute in Spain. Further information about the IAC's research programme, its Observatories and the 10.4m GTC is available at the IAC's web page:

Tasks: The main goal of the project is to execute and exploit the Mini-HaWKs pathfinder, a special survey to test unveiling dormant black hole X-ray binaries in the Milky Way. Mini-HaWKs is one of only four Legacy Surveys of the 2 sqr-deg FoV JAST80 telescope at the Obs. de Javalambre, with 400 h granted time ( In particular, the successful candidate will perform:

  • Data processing and scientific exploitation of the large Mini-HaWKs database
  • Developing a variability classification code.
  • Target selection and characterization using special colour-colour diagrams and variability information.
  • Cross-matching with multi-frequency surveys (Pan-STARRS, UKIDSS, eROSITA, LOFAR…)
  • Follow-up observations of the most interesting Mini-HaWKs targets with large telescopes/space missions (GTC, JWST, XMM-Newton …).
  • Construction of the Mini-HaWKs Legacy Survey Catalogue, including detailed astrometric, Ha flux and variability information of different stellar populations to unprecedented depths.

In addition, the selected candidate will join the IAC group “Black holes, neutron stars, white dwarfs and their environments”, where will have the opportunity to participate in other research lines carried out by the group ( The postdoctoral fellow will benefit from available funding to attend conferences and other research expenses.

Particular attention will be given to applicants with experience in writing computer codes, processing astronomical images and managing large databases. Applicants with experience in the field of X-ray binaries and/or cataclysmic variables are also strongly encouraged.

Requirements: The candidates must have an excellent research record, commensurate with the duration of their research career. They must be in possession of a Ph.D. degree in Astrophysics or Physics by the application deadline. Candidates who have not received their doctorate before the deadline will not be admitted to the selection process. Applicants who prepared their thesis at the IAC have to present accreditations of complementary training at other research centers (this period should be either 1 continuous year or 18 accumulated months) by the application deadline. The IAC is an equal-opportunity employer. We encourage, in particular, applications by women and by members of minorities.

Selection process: The selection process consists of two phases: merit assessment and interview.

1. First phase: merit assessment. The Selection Panel will verify and rate the merits documented by the applicants. The maximum score that can be awarded in this phase is 80 points, calculated as the sum of the scores obtained in each of the following two sections.

a)  CV (maximum score: 60 points). Main criteria will be:

  • Scientific and technical contributions to the field of research, especially those listed in the Science Citation Index, in relation to the duration of the candidate’s scientific career. Of special importance are the first-authored papers by the candidate.
  • Appointments and stays (at the PhD or postdoctoral level) in prestigious research institutions.
  • Conference contributions, especially those leading to publications.
  • Other indicators of research activity and motivation (like invitations to lectures, organization of meetings, and teaching at University level).
  • Any periods of inactivity for medical reasons, maternity/paternity leaves, elderly care, or due to training or professional experience in other fields will be taken into account.

b)  Adequacy to the objectives of the contract (maximum score 20 points)

Adequacy of the candidate’s training and experience to this contract.

  • Scientific exploitation of large astronomical databases (Pan-STARRS, J-PLUS, Gaia, UKIDSS, etc.)
  • Expertise in optical and infrared observations (both photometry and spectroscopy), preferentially in the field of X-ray binaries and/or cataclysmic variables
  • Complementary X-ray and radio analysis skills
  • Computer code writing experience
  • Publications directly related with the work proposed

Form of accreditation for both sections: A report of the candidate's technical and research activity, accompanied by documentation accrediting the activities mentioned.

2) Second phase: interview. (maximum score 20 points)

  • Candidates who have obtained at least 50 points in the first phase will be invited to an interview. The interview may be given in either Spanish or English (as chosen by the candidate) and take place using internet communication software (Zoom) that allows voice and image transmission.
  • During the interview, the candidate will present, for a maximum of 10 minutes, his/her vision about the suitability of his/her professional profile to the position and the planned research activity if awarded the contract. The presentation may be followed by questions by the Selection Committee.

Of the maximum 20 points to be awarded:

  • Up to 10 points correspond to the suitability of the candidate’s profile to the position
  • Up to 10 points correspond to the candidate's vision for their future research activity.


To pass the second phase a minimum score of 15 points will be necessary.

To pass the selective process, a minimum of 65 points must be reached. If there is a draw in the score of two or more candidates, priorities will be set according to the Equality Plan of the IAC.

Training: Candidates who have obtained their doctorate at the IAC must provide accreditation of a period of complementary training at other research centres. The required period is a full continuous year or 18 accumulated months (including periods of training during the doctoral studies stage and after obtaining the Ph.D. degree, but not periods prior to the predoctoral contract at the IAC).

Duration: The contract will be of indefinite duration. It is estimated that the date of commencement will be before September 2024.  The current funding horizon of the project ends on August 31, 2027.

Remuneration: The gross annual salary will be 38.186 Euros, with deductions of up to 20% for income tax (IRPF) and social security (dependent on the candidate's personal situation). The contract provides social security cover for spouse or de facto partner and children.

Extra financial support to start the contract: The present job offer includes financial support related to the incorporation of the selected candidate at the IAC. He/she may apply for up to 2500 € to cover any necessary – and documented - relocation costs when taking up the post at any IAC workplace.  These costs must follow under the following categories and must have been incurred within a period of 14 days prior to the date of commencement of the contract:

  1. Plane or boat ticket from the former place residence to Tenerife (arranged by the IAC). The price of the ticket will be at the cheapest rate.
  2. Accommodation costs for the two weeks (13 nights) also arranged by the IAC
  3. A per diem of 37.40€ x 14 days

No other expenses (bus, train, taxi, etc.) shall be reimbursed. This grant is considered as taxable income and the corresponding taxes (IRPF*), payable by physical persons, will be retained.

Applicants from outside the EU: Successful applicants who are not citizens of a member country of the European Union must keep in mind that, prior to signing the contract, they must obtain a residence and work permit (NIE card) from the Spanish immigration authorities.

Presentation of applications: Applications must be sent electronically via the web-based application system before the deadline set out in this advertisement. Alternatively, you may follow the instructions given in the corresponding official advertisement on our website.

The following documentation must be sent:

  • Online application including the name and position code (PS-2024-005)
  • Copy of a valid passport or national identity card
  • Cover Letter
  • CV, containing a list of publications (NO amendment allowed)
  • Report on research activity and justification of suitability for the job -not exceeding 2 pages- (NO amendment allowed).
  • Copy of your degree or corresponding stamped certificate, issued on behalf of the University where you have obtained the degree (in Spanish or English) (NO amendment allowed)
  • Certificate of training in other centers (only for applicants that have completed their doctorate at the IAC).

You should also include the names and email addresses of two or three scientists familiar with your work.

Applications submitted after the deadline will be automatically rejected, as will those unaccompanied by a Curriculum Vitae, Research Activity Report, copy of the Degree, documents that cannot be corrected or added to after submission. Applications not accompanied by these documents will therefore definitely be excluded from the selection process.

If any other required documents are omitted, they will have to be submitted within a period of five working days after publication of the provisional list of admitted and excluded candidates.

The IAC supports and adheres to the Recommendation of the European Commission 2005/251/EC of March 11th 2005 on “The European Charter for Researchers and “The Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers” adopted by the European Commission. Additionally, the IAC is aligned with the "Human Resources Strategy for Researchers" (HRS4R) fostered by the European Commission to support the implementation of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers (C&C), having received recognition from the European Commission, with the award of the distinction "Excellence in Human Resources in Research".

Application deadline: MARCH 31, 2024

Contact: For further information about the scientific aspects of this opening, please contact the head of the project at the IAC PI, Prof. Jorge Casares (jorge.casares [at] (jorge[dot]casares[at]iac[dot]es))

Selection tribunal