Sep 6, 2018

Laser Scientist

Science and Technology Facilities Council

Category: Work
Posted by: admin

Salary: £30,357- £32,997 (Laser Scientist) or £37,789- £41,988 (Senior Laser Scientist) - awarded according to relevant experience
Grade: RC-D or RC-E
Contract Type: Open-Ended 
Hours: Full Time 
Closing Date: 30th September 2018

 About us

The Accelerator Science and Technology Centre (ASTeC), based at Daresbury Laboratory in Cheshire, is a center of excellence for research and development on advanced particle accelerators. We work with the top particle accelerator laboratories around the world to deliver innovative and cutting-edge research facilities, pushing the science and technology frontier forwards.

About the role

Cutting-edge particle accelerators require particle bunches with femtosecond duration and timing stability. Ultrafast laser systems are critical in realising the challenges of femtosecond particle acceleration, in terms of both generating and characterising the quality of the particle bunches. The Femtosecond Lasers and Timing (FLT) group within ASTeC is underpinning this priority through activities centered on the Compact Linear Accelerator for Research and Applications (CLARA) test facility, based at Daresbury Laboratory. CLARA is also situated immediately next to the Versatile Electron Linear Accelerator (VELA), an ultra-high performance electron beam injector system. Our work includes: development of femtosecond laser-based sources from the UV to far-IR for particle beam generation and manipulation; temporal and spectral characterisation of laser, electron and free electron laser photon sources; and femtosecond synchronisation of laser and electron sources.

There is an opportunity for a Laser Scientist to make an important contribution to the work of ASTeC through the development and operation of the CLARA Photoinjector Laser System. Your work will primarily focus on delivering spatially and temporally-tailored laser pulses to the CLARA photocathode and working with accelerator scientists to understand the impact of these pulses on beam performance. You will also contribute to research activities investigating the femtosecond timing stability of the laser system. There will also be the opportunity to work on other experimental projects with national and international collaborators.

You will be appointed at either Band D or Band E of the STFC’s staffing hierarchy, depending on the strength of your skills, experience and qualifications. Appointees at Band E will have additional role responsibilities as outlined below.

Role responsibilities

Band D and Band E:

  • development of femtosecond UV sources for the generation of electron bunches on the VELA and CLARA accelerator photocathodes, including tailored 3D (longitudinal and transverse) laser shaping to meet relevant performance objectives
  • characterise the transport of UV pulses to the VELA and CLARA photocathodes through vacuum
  • ensure day-to-day operation of the Photoinjector Laser System (12 mJ, 400 Hz amplified Ti:Sapphire, 50 fs, with frequency tripling to 266 nm)
  • contribute to accelerator operations, collaborating with accelerator scientists and engineers to understand the impact of the Photoinjector Laser System on beam performance.

Band E specific:

  • responsibility for safety of personnel and equipment in the Photoinjector Laser Laboratory in the role of Laser Responsible Officer.

Contacts and communications

You will work closely with a diverse range of engineers and scientists from multiple disciplines, including laser systems, RF, accelerator physics, vacuum and diagnostics. You will advise these groups on laser capabilities, problems and troubleshooting. You will help define goals for laser activities and be expected to work to your own initiative to ensure their delivery. You will communicate with external academic and industrial collaborators and suppliers.You should be able to discuss technical requirements with these parties and work to ensure relevant delivery timescales are met.

Other relevant information

To maintain accelerator operations and experiment schedules, flexibility in working hours and shift work will be required on occasion.

As a laser worker, you will need to satisfy STFC minimum eyesight requirements (please note that the STFC does not require perfect eyesight; the use of corrective lenses is perfectly acceptable).

The role may involve occasional travel within the UK and abroad.

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at

The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.

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