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A researcher in space physics in view to make a PhD



Start date
Deadline for applications
Job title description

A full-time vacancy as a researcher in space physics is vacant within the framework of the BIRA-IASB project EURAMET Biosphere at the Federal Scientific Institute BIRA-IASB, Department Space Physics, Division Solar Wind.

Division, context

BIRA-IASB is a Belgian Federal Scientific Institute conducting research and providing services in space aeronomy, i.e. the physics and chemistry of Earth’s atmosphere and other planets, and outer space. BIRA-IASB has strong experience in space weather and in developing kinetic models of solar wind interactions with the terrestrial magnetosphere.



  • You will study space radiations and flux of energetic particles trapped in the magnetic field of the Earth, the effects of cosmic rays on the terrestrial atmosphere and the effects of Solar Energetic Particle events.
  • At BIRA-IASB, you will address major remaining issues related to energetic particles in space plasmas using the kinetic approach, and you will implement different mechanisms in numerical models at different scales.


  • You will play an important role in society through your research, but also through your service to the society. Depending on the needs and your personal interests, this can consist of participation in the public debate, science communication, contributions to policy-supporting research projects for governments from the local to the European and international level, etc. You will take up an active role in councils, working groups, etc.


Required competences

We are looking for a highly motivated, well organised and dynamic candidate with a high level of independence and creative thinking.

  • You hold a master in Physics, Engineering or Mathematics and would like to make a PhD.
  • You are eager to learn new techniques and you show a keen interest and curiosity driven approach to scientific questions.
  • You have expertise in programming languages, preferably Python.
  • You have demonstrable expertise in space physics, preferentially for space radiation, magnetosphere or space plasmas.
  • You are a team player.
  • Proficiency in English is required.


Offer and benefits
  • This position is a full-time job on a contractual base of 1 year with possibility to continue 3 additional years for a PhD if the conditions are filled
  • All relevant work experience (public + private sector) will be considered when determining seniority.
  • Possibility of training (to be followed during working hours)


  • Attractive annual leave policy (minimum 26 days by year)
  • Options to balance professional and personal life (flexible schedule) within the 38 hours week
  • Pleasant work environment in a scientific institution located in a green setting in Uccle, Brussels.


  • Full refund of commuting expenses when using public transportation, compensation when using the bicycle
  • Possibility to work from home
  • Access to special advantages arranged for the employees of the federal scientific institutions: museum card, hospitalization insurance, reductions via the Fed + card, etc.


  • Company restaurant with reasonably priced hot meals and salad bar.
  • On-site childcare during school holidays in July and August.
  • Dynamic working environment with international contacts.

After evaluation of the application letters, the selected candidates will be invited for an interview, or a teleconference if needed.

More information about this vacancy can be obtained from Dr. Viviane Pierrard by email viviane (dot) pierrard (at) aeronomie (dot) be



Send your application (CV and cover letter) with the reference “EURAMET Biosphere" to:

  • viviane (dot) pierrard (at) aeronomie (dot) be
  • hr-ae (at) aeronomie (dot) be (in cc)


Earth's magnetic field. Image credits ESA/ATG Medialab.
More about BIRA-IASB

The Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB) is a Belgian Federal Scientific Institute.

Since its founding in 1964, BIRA-IASB has been conducting research and providing public services in space aeronomy, i.e. the physics and chemistry of Earth's atmosphere and other planets, and outer space.

Our scientists use instruments on the ground, in the air, on board balloons or in space and computer models.