Thread: Associate Scientist, Earth Sciences

Started: 2020-10-19 17:30:29
Last activity: 2020-10-19 17:30:29
Ben Tanis
2020-10-19 17:30:29
Institution: Universities Space Research Association
Open Until: 2020-12-01

Associate Scientist Earth Sciences

The Universities Space Research Association (USRA) has a mission to advance space-related sciences and exploration through innovative research, technology, and education programs that involve universities, governments, and the private sector for the benefit of humanity. As part of this mission, USRA is conducting collaborative research for the investigation of hazards and resources with the USGS Earthquake Science Center, Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center and the USGS National Innovation Center. USGS operates ShakeAlert for the U.S. west coast in collaboration with a number of university partners. The system rapidly detects earthquakes, generates and issues alerts to the public and institutional users to inform them of impending shaking. The purpose of this position is to support the collaborative research with USGS focused on improving the ShakeAlert Earthquake Early Warning system.

Position Summary:

The Associate Scientist will conduct research to support the operation and research methodology of the Earthquake Early Warning system.

Essential Duties/Responsibilities:

• Satisfy USRA's non-profit mission by making a distinctive impact through technical accomplishments in the assigned projects.
o Work in collaboration with a multi-disciplinary team of USRA and USGS scientists and engineers.
o Development and operate scientific systems in Linux.
o Conduct geophysics research, using signal processing, and machine learning techniques.
o Scientific Programing using C++ and Python.
o Use Active MQ, Git, Earthworm, and Postgres.
o Co-author scientific publications that directly apply results from these analyses.
o Present research at relevant conferences and academic institutions
• Act safely, ethically and in compliance with all laws and regulations and USRA policies and procedures including:
o Ensure the protection of USGS and USRA intellectual property with respect to commercial and ITAR/EAR concerns through disclosures, patent applications
o Obtain pre-approval for travel and meet other requirements in compliance with travel procedures applicable to your assigned projects
o Complete timesheets daily, in compliance with USRA requirements
o Complete all trainings as scheduled
Additional Responsibilities
• Other job-related duties as assigned

Required Qualifications


• A Master’s Degree in Computer Science, Geophysics, or related field.


• Minimum 5+ years developing scientific models and performing analyses.
• Minimum 2-5 years managing and completing complex, multi-faceted projects.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
• Ability to prepare scientific publications as co-author with other scientists.
• Excellent written and verbal communication in English is required
• Ability to program complex scientific applications in the Linux OS
• Experience in geophysics research, signal processing, and machine learning are desirable.
• Demonstrated knowledge of C++ and Python. Significant experience programming in C++ is required.
• Experience with Active MQ, Git, Earthworm, and Postgres is desirable.
• Demonstrated ability to establish development priorities and development schedules, and to monitor and report progress
• Working knowledge of machine learning algorithms is a plus.
• Model USRA’s core values:
o Passion (for science, technology and education);
o Partnerships (with universities, governments, and the private sector); and
o Professionalism (through excellence, accountability, and respect for others).

Working Conditions:

Work will be performed in an office environment. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand; walk; sit; talk or hear.


Employee must be willing and able to travel. Position may require limited domestic and international business travel.

The position will close when a candidate has been selected. We will begin review of applicants immediately.

Applicants should apply to the posting at USRA Careers and include a letter of interest, resume, or curriculum vita. Additional information on USRA can be found at

USRA is an Equal Opportunity Employer: Minorities / Females / Protected Veterans / Disabled / Sexual Orientation / Gender Identity.

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