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CIRES/ NOAA SWPC Space Weather Geoelectric Research Scientist

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Date Posted:


Job Summary

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CU CIRES) invites applications for a Research Scientist position at NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC). The successful applicant will work to advance SWPC’s ability to predict the dynamics of geomagnetic activity from space weather as it pertains to terrestrial impacts on the electrical power grid.

The position will require the ability to interact with operators and planners in the electrical power industry, specifically to communicate advances in SWPC’s space weather services and products, to educate this user community about how they are affected by space weather, and to engage with users to understand their needs and requirements for actionable space weather information.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

At CIRES, the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, more than 800 environmental scientists work to understand the dynamic Earth system, including people's relationship with the planet. CIRES is a partnership of NOAA and the University of Colorado Boulder, and our areas of expertise include weather and climate, changes at the Earth's poles, air quality and atmospheric chemistry, water resources, and solid Earth sciences. Our vision is to be instrumental in ensuring a sustainable future environment by advancing scientific and societal understanding of the Earth system.

As part of NOAA's National Weather Service, the Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) - - operates 24/7 to provide real-time monitoring and forecasting of solar and geophysical events, which impact satellites, power grids, communications, navigation, and other technological systems. SWPC customers include the general public, industry, and government agencies.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Working within a small dynamic group at SWPC to advance existing models of the regional Geoelectric effects of space weather.
  • Investigate applications related to Geospace/Geoelectric modeling that could be beneficial to SWPC forecasters and customers.
  • Assess and validate models and applications to establish SWPC priorities.
  • Create testbed versions of high-priority applications, with appropriate documentation, and within an appropriate software framework, to facilitate a successful transition to real-time space weather forecasting operations.
  • Present results and ongoing efforts through peer-reviewed publications and presentations at professional meetings and conferences.

What You Should Know

  • Access to this NOAA Federal Center and computing facilities is necessary to perform the work of this position. Access is not available for individuals working in the United States through a visa and therefore we are unable to consider applications from individuals on a visa or requiring visa sponsorship for this position.

  • This position will be rostered in CIRES at the University of Colorado Boulder but will be physically situated in the David Skaggs Research Center, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80305. 
  • Selected finalists will be required to pass a federal background check for site access.
  • All University of Colorado Boulder employees are required to comply with the campus COVID-19 vaccine requirement. New employees must provide proof of vaccination or receive a medical or religious exemption within 30 days of employment.

What We Can Offer

  • CIRES can offer a generous compensation package. 
  • The annual hiring salary range for this position is $75,000 - $120,000. Salary is commensurate with education and experience and determined based on our CIRES internal career track classification.
  • Relocation funds are available for this position following CIRES and the University of Colorado's relocation processes and procedures.
  • We have a great work culture that emphasizes work-life balance.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be ambitious. Be resourceful. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • A Ph.D. in the physical sciences such as physics or engineering.
  • Experience developing high-quality and insightful visualizations of scientific datasets.
  • Experience with data analysis and programming skills in Python, IDL, or similar languages.
  • Experience in modern software management paradigms and tools such as git.
  • Candidates must successfully complete the required federal clearance process.
  • Access to this NOAA Federal Center and computing facilities is necessary to perform the work of this position. Access is not available for individuals working in the United States through a visa and therefore we are unable to consider applications from individuals on a visa or requiring visa sponsorship for this position.

What You Will Need

  • Knowledge of space weather, the interaction of the Solar wind with Earth’s magnetosphere, and the resulting induced geomagnetic and geoelectric perturbations.
  • Familiarity with the effect of solid earth conductivity on the surface geoelectric field and on the level of geomagnetically induced currents in artificial conductors, and some familiarity with current approaches to model this effect.
  • Data analysis skills, especially competency and experience working with real-time data and applying time and frequency domain analysis techniques will be important including demonstrated knowledge of time-series analysis and practical experience using the techniques in applications.
  • Strong abilities in the physics of electricity and magnetism.
  • Ability to implement mathematical models and algorithms as computer programs.
  • Ability to work in a mission-focused, operational environment.
  • Ability to think critically and make independent decisions.
  • Ability to work well in a team and to build strong interpersonal relationships which facilitate cross-team knowledge sharing.
  • Strong communication skills, demonstrated through peer-reviewed articles and oral presentations to audiences with widely varying degrees of sophistication and expertise.
  • Ability to contribute to a diverse and inclusive workforce at the University of Colorado Boulder and NOAA/SWPC.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:

  1. A copy of your CV.
  2. A cover letter addressed to the Search Committee briefly describing your qualifications, professional goals, and specific interest in this position.
If you are selected as a finalist, we will contact you through email for you to initiate a SkillSurvey from a list of 5 professional references (2 of whom must be/have been supervisors). SkillSurvey is an online automated reference check solution. This information will be kept confidential and viewable only by the search committee.

If you are selected as the finalist, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources department using an approved online vendor. If your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version (if applicable) as an optional attachment.

This position will remain posted until filled. Applications will be reviewed as they are received.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: George Millward

Posting Contact Email: