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CIRES/NOAA Chemical Sciences Laboratory, Post-Doctoral Associate or Research Scientist

University of Colorado Boulder

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CIRES/NOAA Chemical Sciences Laboratory, Post-Doctoral Associate or Research Scientist

Requisition Number: 45308
Location: Boulder Colorado
Employment Type: Research Faculty
Schedule: Full Time
Posting Close Date:
Date Posted:

Job Summary

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) is seeking a motivated Postdoctoral Associate or Research Scientist to conduct research to understand sources, chemistry and impacts of reactive trace gases in the atmosphere. This scientist will work in the NOAA Chemical Sciences Laboratory (CSL) Atmospheric Composition and Chemical Processes group (ACCP) and will be responsible for performing measurements and analysis of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NO, NO2 and NOy) during airborne science experiments including the NOAA CSL AEROMMA mission planned for the summer of 2023. These measurements are performed using custom-built laser-induced fluorescence instruments that have been recently developed in ACCP, and will be deployed on the NASA DC-8 “flying laboratory”. The AEROMMA mission will primarily focus on the remote marine atmosphere, urban air quality, and atmospheric chemistry at the interface of these urban and marine environments. These efforts are critical to advancing understanding of atmospheric chemistry, and have important implications for climate and air quality.

The scientist will participate in all aspects of performing measurements of these species on airborne platforms including instrument maintenance, improvements, integration, calibration, operation, and data-reduction. Ongoing research topics using these data include understanding sources and chemistry of sulfur and its impact on aerosol and cloud formation and radiative forcing. Reactive nitrogen topics of interest include but are not limited to atmospheric sources and fate of NOx including air/sea exchange, roles of NOx in atmospheric oxidation and peroxy radical chemistry, quantification of lightning NOx, and synergistic use of in-situ and remote sensing geostationary measurements. The selected candidate will pursue novel research into any of these topics using data acquired during airborne science campaigns. The initial appointment is for one year with the possibility of extension depending on funding and performance.
The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) is an internationally recognized leader in innovative environmental science and research and is located at the University of Colorado Boulder. At CIRES, more than 800 environmental science professionals work to understand the dynamic Earth system, including people’s relationship with the planet. CIRES has partnered with NOAA since 1967, and our areas of expertise include weather and climate, changes at Earth’s poles, air quality and atmospheric chemistry, water resources, solid Earth sciences, and more. Our vision is to be instrumental in ensuring a sustainable future environment by advancing scientific and societal understanding of the Earth system.

The mission of the NOAA Chemical Sciences Laboratory (CSL) is to advance scientific understanding of the chemical and physical processes that affect Earth’s atmospheric composition. CSL’s vision is a nation that has the needed scientific understanding and information about atmospheric composition to make optimal decisions for the well-being of current and future generations.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Maintain, calibrate, and operate custom laser induced fluorescence instruments onboard airborne research platforms. We use custom-built fiber lasers and the construction, development, and/or troubleshooting of these systems may be required.
  • Support the deployment of instruments on airborne platforms such as the NASA DC-8 during the AEROMMA experiment in 2023. Deployments involve travel to remote work locations for many weeks at a time.
  • Present data, and analysis at science team meetings and research conferences. Publish results in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
  • Pursue novel research using the data acquired by these and other instruments during atmospheric science field campaigns. Write manuscripts presenting results for submission to peer-reviewed scientific journals.

Additional responsibilities for Research Scientists:
  • In addition to the duties identified above, within CIRES/NOAA CSL, a Research Scientist is also responsible for conducting original research and/or supporting research through work in the field of Atmospheric Sciences.
  • Outreach, education, and service activities are also important components of a Research Scientist’s effort.

What You Should Know

  • This position will be rostered in CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder, but will be physically situated in the David Skaggs Research Center, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305, on a federal research campus.
  • Selected finalists will be required to pass a federal background check for site access. Foreign nationals’ access to the federal facility will be limited to weekdays, and with the presence of a federal escort.
  • This position requires field deployments. These involve travel to remote work locations for many weeks at a time.
  • Given the requirements and timeline for this project, a targeted start date no later than April 1 2023 is strongly preferred.
  • Boulder is a vibrant community with access to mountain parks, dog parks, miles of trails, rivers, lakes, cafes, restaurants, boutiques, theaters, museums, and sports venues. Boulder was recently ranked as one of the top places to live in the U.S. by U.S. News.
  • As an employee at CU Boulder, you receive a pass allowing free access to the regional public transit system, which is an outstanding network of buses and light rail systems that provide service within Boulder and connect to Denver, the Denver airport, and surrounding communities.

What We Can Offer

  • We offer a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package.
  • The annual hiring salary range for this position is $62,000 - $69,000. Salary is commensurate with education and experience and determined based on our CIRES internal career track classification.
  • Relocation expenses are available for this position following CIRES and the University of Colorado’s relocation processes and procedures.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be ambitious. Be impactful. Be Boulder.

What We Require

For Post-Doctoral Associates:
  • A Ph.D. in Physics, Chemistry, Atmospheric Science, Environmental Engineering, or a related field.
  • Experience with the operation and maintenance of complex instrumentation in a laboratory or field environment.
  • Experience with data interpretation for the presentation of scientific results at meetings and in scientific journals.
  • Ability to perform required duties associated with ~ 2 month field deployments in support of AEROMMA or other missions.

Additional requirements for Research Scientists:
  • At least 1 year of post-doctoral research experience.
  • Proven capability for self-guided, motivated, and original research as documented by several first-author publications.

What You Will Need

  • Interest in building and using custom scientific instrumentation to make observations in the atmosphere and analyzing these observations to address atmospheric problems of contemporary interest.
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively with other researchers and support staff in a collaborative research environment.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume or CV.
  2. Cover letter addressed to the Search Committee briefly describing your qualifications, professional goals, and specific interest in this position.
  3. List of contact information for 3 references who may be contacted for a professional reference and/or asked to write a letter of recommendation on your behalf. You don’t need to include letters of recommendation with your initial application. If you are identified as a finalist for this role, these will be requested at a later time.

If you are selected as the finalist, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources department using an approved online vendor. If your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version as an optional attachment.

This position will be open until finalists have been identified. Applications will be screened as they are received.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

To apply, visit

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