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Research Fellow in Space Exploration Technology

Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering

Location:  Boldrewood Campus
Salary:   £32,348 to £34,308 Per Annum
Full Time Fixed Term
Closing Date:  Wednesday 30 November 2022
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  2044322DA

This post is offered on a full-time, fixed-term until 31/Oct/2024 due to the funding expectations, but it may be extended based on the funding availability.

You will join our collaborative, multi-disciplinary team working on developing new non-thermal plasma technologies for in-situ resource utilisation in future crewed long-duration space missions. You will be working under the supervision of Dr Minkwan Kim at the University of Southampton with several PhD students and Research fellows. 

In addition, you will collaborate with the UK Space Agency and several SMEs during the project. 

Your key responsibilities will be to:

  • Design and characterise a new non-thermal plasma reactor as all-in-one in-situ resource utilisation system for future Mars exploration
  • Develop various plasma power driver including high-voltage nano-pulser, AC, and microwave system
  • Perform optical plasma diagnostics

In addition, you will contribute to the research group's activities, and publish new findings in peer-reviewed journals. There will also be an opportunity to gain experience in teaching and student supervision.

To be successful, you will have a PhD in plasma physics or related areas such as mechanical, electrical and aerospace engineering or equivalent professional qualifications and experience. A candidate within 3 months of completion of their PhD will also be considered. Experience with experimental work is critical and knowledge of non-thermal plasma is desirable. Strong communication and language skills, as evidenced by publications and presentations, are essential.

Equality, diversity and Inclusion is central to the ethos in the School of Engineering. We particularly encourage women, Black, Asian and minority ethnic, LGBT and disabled applicants to apply for this position. In recognition of our continued commitment to improving equality for women in science we were awarded an Athena SWAN bronze in 2013 and 2016.   We give full consideration to applicants that wish to work flexibly including part-time and due consideration will be given to applicants who have taken a career break. The University has a generous maternity policy**, onsite childcare facilities.

 The University of Southampton is in the top 1% of world universities and in the top 10 of the UK’s research-intensive universities. The University of Southampton is committed to sustainability and being a globally responsible university and has recently been awarded the Platinum EcoAward.  This commits all of our staff and students to take responsibility for managing their activities to minimise harm to the environment, whether this through switching off non-essential electrical equipment or using the recycling facilities.

subject to qualifying criteria

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.

 Informal enquiries may be made to Dr Min Kwan Kim ( Applications are only accepted via the online application process.

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 call Jane Sturgeon (HR Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 4043 or email  Please quote reference 2044322DA on all correspondence.

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We believe equality, diversity and inclusion are fundamental to making the University of Southampton a welcoming, vibrant and successful organisation. Having a diverse workforce, inclusive of people of all ages and beliefs, from different racial, educational and social backgrounds opens up a wealth of possibilities, makes us more creative and accelerates our impact on society. We welcome applicants that value the diversity of our community and are willing to play their part in supporting the mission of inclusivity. 

Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

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