Physics and Astronomy » High Energy Physics »

Situations Vacant

25 Feb 2024

Postdoctoral Position: LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) Dark Matter Search Experiment (Ref:B04-03481)

The UCL High Energy Physics Group has an immediate opening for an outstanding PhD particle or astroparticle physicist to work on the LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) Dark Matter Search Experiment. This position is funded for 2 years in the first instance.

LZ is one of the most sensitive experiments in the search for galactic dark matter having recently published the world-leading constraints on dark matter interactions from its first engineering run that established operational performance as originally designed. LZ will now begin taking primary science data. Over the next 3 years LZ will explore entirely new electroweak parameter space, reaching an order of magnitude further than the state-of-the-art, towards a first discovery or constraints on the leading dark matter theories. The successful applicant will take a highly active and leading role in the analyses from these datasets with genuine discovery potential across a range of dark sector, exotic neutrino and Beyond the Standard Model (BSM) physics.

LZ, which brought together the LUX and ZEPLIN projects, was designed and constructed from the most radiopure materials over a 10-year period to deliver the largest ever dual-phase liquefied xenon time projection chamber, with 7-tonne active target. The purified xenon target viewed by nearly 500 photosensors is held in an ultra-low background containment vessel, in turn surrounded by an outer detector and water tank for shielding and located 1 mile underground in the Davis cavern of the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) at Homestake mine, South Dakota, USA.

In addition to leading analysis of datasets the successful applicant will contribute to Monte Carlo simulations, statistical inference, and the development of novel techniques in data intensive science. The successful applicant will also be expected to take active roles in research coordination, leadership of working groups, and on-site operation and calibrations of LZ at SURF.

The successful applicant will also have opportunity to engage in R&D across a range of topics including the use of novel levitated quantum sensors for dark sector and BSM searches, advanced radiopurity techniques, and designs for the future global xenon-based rare event search observatory being developed by the new XLZD consortium.

The UCL High Energy Physics Group is one of the largest groups in the country and consists of around 90 staff comprising academics, long-term fellows, research staff, technical/computing staff and PhD students. The Group provides an exciting and supportive research environment with involvement in particle phenomenology, neutrino experiments, direct dark matter searches with underground searches and quantum sensors, particle astrophysics, lepton sector experiments, accelerator R&D and Data Intensive Science via our Centre for Doctoral Training.

The salary will be in the Researcher Grade 7 range: £39,508 - £47,355 per annum, depending on skills and experience.

For further details about the vacancy and how to apply online please go to this link.

If you have any queries regarding the application process, please contact Amalia Bountoureli (a.bountoureli@ucl.ac.uk@ucl.ac.uk).

Informal enquiries regarding the vacancy can be made to Prof Chamkaur Ghag (c.ghag@ucl.ac.uk).

Closing Date: 23:59 on 20th April 2023.