CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Application of Deep Learning Methods to Radio Astronomy

Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)

Perth, Australia

Job posting number: #7111076 (Ref:cj_88884)

Posted: September 20, 2022

Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

Job Description

Acknowledgement of Country

CSIRO acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land, sea and waters, of the area that we live and work on across Australia. We acknowledge their continuing connection to their culture and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. View our vision towards reconciliation

The Opportunity


  • Do you have a PhD in Computer Science, Software Engineering, Mathematics or Astrophysics?
  • Are you ready for the next step in your career?
  • Work alongside radio astronomers to develop new methods in spectral line science


CSIRO Early Research Career (CERC) Postdoctoral Fellowships provide opportunities to scientists and engineers who have completed their doctorate and have at least one and less than four years of relevant postdoctoral work experience. These fellowships aim to develop the next generation of future leaders of the innovation system.


Applications are invited for a two-year CERC Fellowship role to work on the application of Deep Learning or Machine Learning methods to the next-generation radio astronomy spectral line surveys in the SKA era, within the research group led by Dr Ivy Wong.  Specifically, the focus of this CERC Fellowship is aimed at the Big Data challenges brought forth by the WALLABY survey using the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP), that will map the entire Southern sky of Atomic Hydrogen (HI) further, deeper and wider than ever before.  The goal is to enable WALLABY to better detect HI in galaxies with a lookback time of ~1 billion years.  

ASKAP is a correlated array of 36 12-m dishes and it maps the sky via synthesis imaging – an indirect imaging technique similar to that used in medical imaging (eg. CT scans or MRIs).  The ASKAP data rate is ~2Gb per second, yielding ~75 Pb per year.  Hence, smarter automation of data verification processes plus post-processing processes are two work areas that Deep Learning methods can help contribute towards.

The CERC Fellow will work in close collaborations with Dr Ivy Wong, the ASKAP spectral line commissioning scientist(s) and other WALLABY CERC Fellow(s) to provide novel solutions to the scientific and technical challenges faced by the next-generation radio sky surveys.  To apply, please submit an online application together with a cover letter that explicitly addresses each of the selection criteria for this position.  


Your duties will include:

  • In collaboration with radio astronomers, developing and implementing machine learning / deep learning solutions to the big data challenges faced by the next-generation all-sky survey for atomic Hydrogen.
  • Becoming familiar with the latest machine/deep learning techniques and effectively translating such knowledge to radio astronomy problems using CSIRO HPC facilities.
  • Publishing results and methods in relevant international journals (and conferences).
  • Collaborating with members of a diverse project team and external partners to ensure research leads to lasting application impact.
  • Communicating effectively and professionally with all staff and collaborators.


Location: Kensington, Western Australia

Salary: AU$89k - AU$98k plus up to 15.4% superannuation

Tenure: Specified term of 2 years

Reference: 88884

To be considered you will need:

  • A doctorate in a relevant discipline area, such as Computer Science, Software Engineering, Mathematics, Astrophysics or similar. Please note: To be eligible for this role you must at least 1 and no more than 4 years (full-time or equivalent) of postdoctoral research experience.
  • Demonstrated expertise in machine/deep learning applications to big datasets.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in large distributed scientific collaborations.
  • High level written and oral communication skills with the ability to represent the research team effectively internally and externally, including the presentation of research outcomes at national and international conferences.
  • A sound history of publication in peer reviewed journals and/or authorship of scientific papers, reports, grant applications or patents.


For full details about this role please view the Position Description


Applications for this position are open to Australian/New Zealand Citizens, Australian Permanent Residents or Australian temporary residents currently residing in Australia. Appointment to this role is subject to provision of a national police check and may be subject to other security/medical/character requirements.


To enter a CSIRO site, CSIRO will require you to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 (or show a valid medical exemption from vaccination). If you are unable to meet this requirement, then you must return a negative result on a Rapid Antigen Test (within 48 hours prior to attending site) and wear a face mask whilst on the CSIRO site. These requirements apply if you are attending a CSIRO site as part of a recruitment process.

Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. 

Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit people representing the diversity across our society, and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. 


At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to Apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.

Applications Close

23 October, 2022 11:00pm AEDT

We’re working hard to build a safe and welcoming culture where people can bring their whole selves to work. Valuing and enabling difference empowers our people, unlocking their potential to innovate and shape the future for our customers, all Australians and the world. We do the extraordinary every day. We innovate for tomorrow and help improve today. We're the people that stay awake solving the world’s big questions. This is true of our science and of our people. Our mission is to create benefit for Australia through impactful science and innovation but we know that that's not possible without an inclusive and diverse culture. We're working hard to recruit diverse people and ensure all our people feel supported to do their best work and empowered to let their ideas flourish.

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Job posting number:#7111076 (Ref:cj_88884)
Application Deadline:Open Until Filled
Employer Location:CSIRO
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