Research Software Engineer temporary positions (ESO scientific software pipeline

Research Software Engineer temporary positions (ESO scientific software pipeline

Published Deadline Location
22 Jan 15 Feb Groningen

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Research Software Engineer temporary positions (ESO scientific software pipelines) (1.0 FTE)
The Kapteyn Astrono

Job description

The Kapteyn Astronomical Institute of the University of Groningen invites applications for a research software engineer position. The vacancy is for a 3 year temporary project-specific position with the OmegaCEN Astronomical Science Data Center. The research software engineer will be part of a 6 person team that will perform for the European Southern Observatory maintenance and development of operational science data reduction pipelines for the ESO La-Silla Paranal observatories in collaboration with ATG-Europe in Noordwijk, The Netherlands. It includes imaging and spectral instruments. The work will consist of maintaining and further developing several La Silla Paranal data reduction pipelines. The data reduction pipelines will be maintained together with associated libraries, such as the High-Level Data Reduction Library based on the Common Pipeline Library, and Molecfit/Skycorr (modules for sky background corrections). This position will include coordination of the day-to-day work of the project team and consultancy to team members. The position is for one year initially, with two year extension depending on performance and funding. The deliverables after three years conclude the project of the job.

The OmegaCEN Astronomical Science Data Center is the expertise center for data-intensive astronomy and astronomical information technology at the University of Groningen. It is based at the Donald Smits Center for Information Technology and the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute. The Kapteyn Astronomical Institute is the university department for research and education in astronomy, astrophysics and astronomical instrumentation. The Kapteyn Astronomical Institute is a member of the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA). NOVA is the alliance of the astronomical institutes of the universities of Amsterdam, Groningen, Leiden, and Nijmegen. NOVA is the national homebase for hardware and software instrumentation projects with the European Southern Observatory (ESO). ATG Europe is an international service provider in the fields of space, astronomy, defence and high-tech.


University of Groningen


We are looking for the following qualifications and experience:

- a PhD degree in astronomy
- multi-year recent experience in developing astronomical data reduction software applications
- proven experience of astronomical data reduction pipelines for optical and near-infrared observation domain (imaging, spectroscopy, interferometry)
- demonstratable experience in providing job related guidance and support to a number of less experienced colleagues
- coordinating the activities of the employees within a department or a project
- consultancy to team members
- experience in developing optical/near-infrared astronomical data reduction applications in ANSI-C or C++, excellent knowledge of Python, XML and good knowledge of other scripting languages like Perl. The operating system environments are Linux and MacOS
- software engineering experience: setting up and maintaining development environments for software prototyping and software unit & regression testing (e.g., SVN/Git, GNU auto tools)
- familiarity with the continuous integration tool Jenkins, with software release management, RPM and MacPorts packaging and installation systems is an asset
- knowledge of writing data reduction recipes based on the ESO Common Pipeline Library ( and experience with the ESO Reflex scientific workflow environment is an asset
- affinity with astronomical instrumentation
- pro-active and independent working attitude
- team player, communicative, experience with distributed software project teams is a plus
- flexibility in dealing with different organisational cultures and structures
- prepared to travel several times per year to ESO
- mastery of the English language, both written and spoken.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 36 months.

We offer you, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

- a salary from a minimum of € 4,332 gross per month up to a maximum of € 5,929 gross per month (salary scale 11) based on a full-time position and dependent on qualification and work experience
- excellent secondary terms of employment
- a holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income and an 8.3% end-of-year bonus
- 232 holiday hours per calendar year for full-time employment
- participation in a pension scheme for employees
- a personal budget of € 1,000 per year for additional training and career activities.

The starting date is as soon as possible.


  • IT
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • max. €5929 per month
  • Doctorate
  • V24.0029


University of Groningen

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Broerstraat 5, 9712 CP, Groningen

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