PhD Student

Last application date
May 17, 2020 23:59
WE05 - Department of Physics and astronomy
Employment category
Doctoral fellow
Limited duration
Master degree in Physics, Astronomy, Mathematics, Informatics or equivalent
Occupancy rate
Vacancy Type
Research staff

Job description

The Department of Physics & Astronomy of Ghent University is offering a PhD position in the framework of the FWO research project “Radiation-hydrodynamics simulations of dwarf galaxies with Shadowfax+CMacIonize”. The PhD scholarship is fully funded for 4 years, starting as early as September 1, 2020 and no later than January 1, 2021. The successful applicant will be based in Gent, supervised by Prof. De Rijcke and Dr. Vandenbroucke, and will collaborate with Dr. Wood (University of St Andrews, UK).

The project aims at extending the capabilities of the novel moving-mesh radiation hydrodynamics code Shadowfax+CMacIonize (, and to use it for realistic, high-resolution simulations of the quenching of star formation in dwarf galaxy satellites of the Milky Way. These simulations will provide a reliable estimate of the UV photon escape fraction from dwarfs and its dependence on galaxy mass, time, star-formation rate, ISM substructure, ... and its cosmic variance.

Profile of the candidate

We are looking for someone who is communicative, comfortable working together in a team, has an international outlook, and who has a keen interest in the physical processes that drive galaxy evolution and in how to translate these into high-quality computer code. It is therefore recommended that you have a thorough background in physics and that you have proven experience with (parallelized) C++ programming. The eligibility requirements of Ghent University must be met (

We expect you to dissipate the project’s results in scientific peer-reviewed journal papers, conference presentations, and a PhD dissertation, as well as through communications to the larger non-specialist audience (e.g. via social media). Due to the international character of this project, you must be willing to spend several weeks per year abroad (e.g. at the University of St Andrews) within the framework of research mobility. You will be encouraged to strengthen your academic background and competences.

How to apply

The PhD scholarship runs over a period of 48 months. General information on requirements, modalities, and salaries can be found on the UGent website ( If you wish to apply for this position, please e-mail your motivation letter, CV (including a grade list and a copy of your diploma if you already have it), and the contact details of at least two referees to and . The application deadline is May 17, 2020 (23:59 Belgian time).

Ghent University strongly invests in the mental and psycho-social well-being of its personnel and wishes everybody to feel welcome in its departments. The Department of Physics & Astronomy is housed on Campus Sterre, a green oasis on the outskirts of Ghent that is home to many departments from the faculty of sciences, the university's data center, the campus restaurant, and to day-care center De Sterre that provides child care for children from students and staff. We are a diverse group of astronomers, committed to doing the best possible science in a stimulating and fun environment. We offer equal opportunities in all aspects of employment and we encourage everyone to apply.

For more information, please contact us at and.