What is the Visiting Scientist Program at the Arecibo Observatory?

The Visiting Scientist Program (VSP) is an initiative design to bring new collaborators to the Arecibo Observatory that will bring new ideas and innovative projects that can lead to unimaginable science discoveries. The VSP is directed towards renowned senior academics or researchers who are employed at a home-institution, national or overseas. The AO VSP will host four (4) scientists per year for up to three (3) months for each scientist.

The Visiting Scientist will:

  • Identify a specific project to be developed while at the observatory.
  • Identify one collaborator as point of contact in the AO group.
  • Contribute with a cutting edge project that can be performed utilizing AO’s existing capability, or that will enhance existing capability.
  • Prepare his/her profile that will be published in the AO, FSI and UCF web pages.
  • Collaborate with the educational and outreach mission of the observatory.
  • Contribute with special lectures at the Puerto Rican university groups and to the UCF/FSI colleagues.
  • Contribute with a colloquium oriented to a broad audience to be streamed and broadcasted through social media.
  • Author or Co-Author of new scientific publications
  • Acquire experience working at most powerful radio telescope of the world.

  • Astronomy: Conducted independent research in this area, have a track record of scientific publications in astronomy. Accessed to observatories, telescopic equipment, and supercomputers.
  • Space & Atmospheric Sciences: Analyzed atmospheric conditions, collected data from a variety of sources such as surface and upper air stations, satellites, and radars. Interpret data contained in maps, charts, and have a track record of scientific publications in SAS.
  • Planetary Radar Science: performed independent research, have a track record of scientific publications in planetary science. Participated in radar observations, data processing, archiving, and modeling of near-Earth asteroids and other Solar System bodies.
Research Experience
  • Above 10 years of research experience in the scientific field.
A record of publications in any of the areas of interest:
  • Radio Astronomy: Pulsars, Fast Radio Burst, Quasars, Exoplanet, SETI, HI 21 cm line, Radio Recombination Line and Molecular lines from Galactic and extra Galactic sources, heliophysics.
  • Planetary Sciences: asteroids, comets, moon surface, space debris, support to space missions, and planetary defense.
  • Space and Atmospheric Sciences-Ionosphere/Thermosphere: natural and artificial changes; Atmospheric coupling and dynamic; Plasma physics.
  • Instrumentation: study plans for new instrumentation or upgrades in the facility for the new decade.

Innovative Project:
Researchers who have an innovative project and want to move to Arecibo to use the radio telescope to advance their science. Demonstrate notable leadership in the area of research.

Visiting Program participants must possess a valid United States non-immigrant, work authorized immigration status that permits training or employment. Most foreign nationals in the Visiting Program are found under one of the following non-immigrant visa classifications: H-1B (Temporary worker in a specialty occupation), O-1 (Extraordinary ability in the sciences) English Proficiency All Visiting Program participants must be proficient in the use and understanding of spoken and written English.

Visiting Program participants can expect to pay taxes of their stipend/salary in federal and/or income tax.

Health Insurance:
All Visiting Program participants must have health insurance for sickness and accidents.

Evaluation Method

To determine if you are qualified for the Arecibo Observatory’s Visiting Scientist Program, a review of your resume and supporting documentation may be made and compared against your responses to the application questionnaire. We will verify your qualifications through quality review, interview questions, work samples, publications, among others. A proposed research plan must be submitted along with your application. This research plan is limited to three (3) pages. Please note, that three (3) references will be requested during the application process. Review of applications will begin July 1st, 2020.

Reasonable Accommodation

The Arecibo Observatory provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process, please contact visitingscientistprogram@naic.edu.

The Program will provide:

  • Travel expenses
  • Local transportation
  • Stipend
  • Lodging at the facility
  • Food allowance for the three (3) months

How to Apply
Applications (CV and completed application) must be received online at visitingscientistprogram@naic.edu.

There are several parts of the application process that affect the overall evaluation of your application:
1. Curriculum Vitae
2. Responses to the application questionnaire
3. Research Plan/Proposal
4. Interview
5. Letters of recommendation (3)

Please submit your application using our online form: http://webprop.naic.edu/proposal/visiting-scientist/application

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