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Research Fellow in Astronautics

Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering

Location:  Boldrewood Campus
Salary:   £30,942 to £32,817 per annum
Full Time Fixed Term for three years
Closing Date:  Friday 16 October 2020
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  1267920DA-R

Applications are invited for a Research Fellow position at the University of Southampton. 

Joining our European project MHD Enhanced Entry System for Space Transportation (MEESST) as the part of an international multidisciplinary team. You will mainly support numerical simulation and modelling investigating the interaction of magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) and re-entry hypersonic flows for mitigating heat flux and communication blackout. 

The ideal candidate will apply advanced hypersonic flow simulations and modelling for filling the gap between science and technology towards the development of a first demonstrator implementing active magnetic shielding during re-entry hypersonic flows. In particular, you will improve and validate physical models for high-fidelity numerical simulation, for the first time including all relevant EM-plasma interactions, thermochemical non-equilibrium and radiation effects for both Earth and Mars atmospheres. This position provides you an unique opportunity to work on advanced MHD technologies which can introduce a paradigm shift in aerospace science and technology by turning active magnetic shielding into reality and, potentially, into the spotlight not just for space travel but also for future hypersonic transportation systems.

At the core of this work will be developing physical and computational models to predict surface heat fluxes and electron density distribution for the mitigation of radio blackouts during a planetary entry (Mars, Earth). Models shall be validated against the experimental data measured in VKI and University of Stuttgart. 

As well as carrying our research to the highest standards, the successful applicant will be expected to work as part of a multidisciplinary team and to prepare reports and presentations for project meetings and publications for international journals. 

The successful applicant will have a PhD or equivalent professional qualifications and experience in numerical simulation relating to hypersonic flows or plasmas. The ideal candidate would have a wider knowledge of hypersonic flows, CFD, numerical simulation, magneto hydrodynamics (MHD), and weakly ionized gas flows.

Applications for Research Fellow positions will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification.  The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon successful completion of the PhD.  Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

This is a full-time fixed term contract for three years tenable from 01/01/2021.

Interviews are likely to take place during the week commencing 17th October 2020.

Informal enquiries may be made to Dr Min Kwan Kim ( or Professor Neil Sandham (, applications are only accepted via the online application process.

Be a part of the University of Southampton, one of the UK’s research-intensive universities. We have an international reputation for research, teaching and enterprise activities.

Application Procedure

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please contact Ita Holmes (Recruitment Team) on Please quote reference 1267920DA-R on all correspondence.

Athena SWAN Bronze Award holder: Faculty of Engineering

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We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

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