Employment Opportunities

CTA is a global endeavour expected to cost in the region of €300 million for equipment and an additional 1,500 person-years of effort. Imminent site preparations and construction of CTA’s first telescopes have prompted a significant recruiting effort.


The project office is responsible for the functions of general project management, technical coordination and system integration for the CTA construction project. While most positions will be located in Bologna, some will be located on the CTA sites in Chile and La Palma.


In addition to CTAO gGmbH/Project Office employment opportunities, this page will feature PhD positions with CTA’s Consortium institutes.


All applications and enquires should be sent to


CTAO gGmbH is an equal opportunity employer.

CTAO gGmbH / Project Office Positions

As a member of the CTA construction project, and later CTA operations, the CTA-North Site Manager has a key role in building up the CTA-North site organization to lead and coordinate the on-site construction and operate the observatory. Reporting to the CTA Project Manager during construction, and later to the Director of Operations during operations, the CTA-North Site Manager is the local representative of CTAO.


Duties and Responsibilities

The selected candidate will be responsible for local on-site management, construction activities, on-site science operations during the operations phase, and technical operations.


During the construction phase, the Site Manager will supervise construction activities, provide the link with the Project Office in Bologna, interface with the local project stakeholders (including the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias, Observatory Roque de los Muchachos, local authorities, hardware and software contributors), and ensure compliance with safety regulations. The Site Manager will participate in the hiring of and be supported by local CTAO staff, such as safety engineer, technical staff, construction supervision etc. During the operations phase, the Site Manager will be responsible for effective on-site management of science and technical operations of CTA-North. Duties and responsibilities include:

  • Manage the on-site construction of the Telescope Array according to policies defined by CTAO
  • Build up and manage an on-site team
  • Develop and maintain a fluid, constructive and collaborative relation with IAC’s coordinator for CTA Project
  • Ensure implementation of the on-site Health and Safety Plan in line with IAC’s policies and the Spanish law
  • Coordinate contractors and sub-contractors and on site engineering teams for in-kind contributions on a day-to-day basis.


Reports to:

The CTA Project Manager, located in Bologna, during construction; the Director of Operations during operation.


Qualification and Experience:

CTAO seeks an experienced manager with a university degree in engineering, physics, astronomy, or other relevant fields. The successful candidate should possess:

  • Extensive management experience in construction and/or operation of an observatory or similar facilities, preferable in an international setting
  • Proven track record of leading (preferably multi-disciplinary) teams
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Good knowledge of English and Spanish
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to travel to the CTAO headquarters in Bologna as needed
  • Knowledge in project management methodologies is desirable.


Key competences:

  • The ability to work effectively in a multi-cultural and complex project environment, to take decisions and provide leadership
  • The ability to build strong and effective links locally, with the Project Office and the contributing partners
  • Result-oriented work style


Remuneration and Contract:

CTAO offers an attractive remuneration package including a competitive salary and fringe benefits.


Duty Station:

La Palma, Canary Island, Spain.



Applications with a full CV and cover letter in English should be sent to, indicating position reference “CTA-North Site Manager” and the names of three referees with contact details. We may contact the referees at the end of recruitment process, but only with your prior consent.


CTA is an equal opportunity employer. For more information, please visit or contact the CTA Project Manager Dr. Wolfgang Wild,


Closing date: 27.07.2018

For its Project Office in Bologna (Italy), the CTAO is seeking a Systems Engineer to provide support to the Lead Systems Engineer across the whole project. It is planned that the successful candidate will become the successor of the Lead Systems Engineer after a mid-term training-on-the-job period.


Duties and Responsibilities


The selected candidate will enhance the Systems Engineering team that is responsible for the following tasks:


  • Management of system-level requirements, incl. planning and execution of its verification;
  • Definition and maintenance of the system configuration, incl. standards and documentation;
  • Elaboration, as needed, and maintenance of the CTA System Block Diagram;
  • Definition and management of interfaces, in close collaboration with contributors;
  • Organization of and participation in product reviews;
  • Development and maintenance of system performance analyses and budgets;
  • Development, integration, coordination and operation of project-wide engineering services, tools, processes and procedures such as configuration control processes, electronic documentation and computerized maintenance management systems for construction and up to handover to Operations;
  • Production planning of selected subsystems involving multiple contributors;
  • Development and implementation of processes and standards for CTAO acceptance of components, subsystems, facilities and infrastructures;
  • Organization of and participation in equipment acceptance in Europe and/or Chile;
  • System assembly, integration, and verification.


Professional Requirements/Qualifications


Applicants for this position shall fulfil the following minimum requirements:


  • University degree in engineering in the field of electronics, technical physics or other relevant fields;
  • At least five years of working experience in a system or project engineering position in multidisciplinary, high technology, and complex international projects;
  • Good communication and writing skills and fluency in English (oral and writing);
  • Knowledge of Spanish will be an asset.


The ideal candidate will have experience in several of the following areas:


  • Management of a (small) team of engineers;
  • Coordination of engineers located at internationally distributed institutions, fostering effective team work and cooperation;
  • Requirements and interface management and verification, including preparation of verification plans
  • Configuration management including configuration control boards and processes;
  • Organization and conduction of formal product reviews;
  • Defining acceptance processes and plans, including organization of acceptance reviews;
  • Construction of large science projects and the transition to operations;
  • Industrial tendering processes and contract management;
  • Negotiations with science-driven Institutions as well as industrial contractors;
  • Experience and demonstrated results in the project management of (parts of) large science-driven projects will be an advantage.


Knowledge or experience in several of the following areas is preferred:


  • Observatory construction and/or operation, incl. data handling, telescope pointing;
  • Scientific instrumentation;
  • Electronics engineering;
  • Mechanical engineering;
  • Civil engineering;
  • Power engineering.


Work place: The position will be based in the CTAO Project Office in Bologna, Italy. It will require frequent travel to the contributors’ sites in Europe and elsewhere and the observatory sites in La Palma (Spain) and Paranal Observatory (Chile).


Starting Date: As soon as possible.


Contract and remuneration: Contractual form and salary are subject to negotiation.


Applications: A motivation letter specifying the position of interest, a full curriculum vitae, and at least three names of potential referees should be sent by email to:, indicating the reference “Systems Engineer”.
Further information about the position can be obtained from Wolfgang Ansorge, CTA Lead Systems Engineer,


Deadline for applications is 10 July 2018.

For its Project Office in Bologna (Italy), CTAO is seeking a System Safety Engineer.


Duties and Responsibilities:

The System Safety Engineer (SSE) is responsible for the definition of the Safety System for the entire CTA Observatory and the compliance of the system and its constituent parts with the European Union Product Safety Legislation (EU rules on product safety are defined in the general product safety directive). An important part of the duty is the preparation and implementation of a System Safety Plan (similar to Figure 1 – Overall framework of the IEC 61511 series, or MIL-STD-882E).


The SSE is responsible for the introduction of the system safety program at the participating parties of the CTAO Project and for the training and support the engineers responsible for the execution of the system safety program.


He/she will be responsible for the safety compliance demonstration of the entire CTA Observatory System.


Reports to:

Lead Systems Engineer


Qualifications and Experience:

The successful candidate should possess extensive experience in the following areas:


System and Product Safety

  • familiarity with European product safety laws and regulations
  • ability to specify CE conform System and subsystem product safety requirements
  • ability to prepare system level CE safety conformity assessments
  • ability to review and approve subsystem level safety conformity assessments
  • ability to support / train contractors in product safety engineering and compliance demonstration matters
  • ability to negotiate with National Authorities
  • ability to perform system level safety conformity assessments
  • familiarity with Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) regulations and standards



  • Management of the system safety aspects throughout a large international project
  • Preparation and implementation of System Safety Management Plans


Key Competences:

  • Extensive know-how and experiences in system safety work of large complex international projects
  • Outstanding organizational skills
  • Diligent with great attention to detail
  • Excellent communication skills, in English, with the ability to present and explain health and safety topics
  • Knowledge of the Italian and/or Spanish language is considered an asset


Remuneration and Contract:

CTAO offers an attractive remuneration package including a competitive salary and fringe benefits.

The contractual form is subject to negotiation.


Duty Station:

Bologna, Italy, with regular travel.



Applications with a full CV and cover letter in English should be sent to, indicating position reference “System Safety Engineer”.

CTAO is an equal opportunity employer. For more information, please visit or contact the Lead Systems Engineer, Wolfgang Ansorge at


Starting date: As soon as possible


Closing date: 13 July 2018

CTA Consortium Positions

PhD position in gamma-astronomy with MAGIC and CTA at the Department of Physics, University of Rijeka, Croatia.

Deadline for application is 30 June. Starting date can be between 1st Sept and 1st Nov 2018 (4-year contract). The full-time salary covers also health and social insurance (with payment into retirement funds), and local transportation costs. For EU citizens health insurance is covered for all family members.

According to Croatian laws, the candidate must provide a certificate on the university degree obtained in the application, meaning that only students who already got a master degree by latest end of June can apply for this call.


Details can be found here.

The IAC is offering two four-year postdoc positions for research in Astrophysics. In the past, we have been offering annually these positions with a 3-year duration. They are open to all research fields we carry out at the institute.

Please have a look at this page for further details.

If you are interested in applying, please contact Monica Vazquez Acosta or Ramón García Lopez to be aware of that (because in your application you have to indicate which group you want to collaborate with).

The deadline is June 30th.

The gamma-ray astronomy group in the Erlangen Center for Astroparticle Physics (ECAP) at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg is seeking outstanding individuals for one or more Postdoctoral researcher positions (f/m) to contribute to the analysis of current gamma-ray telescope data (H.E.S.S.-II, Fermi-LAT) and to the development of the Cherenkov Telescope array (CTA).


The successful candidates are expected to cover research areas such as:


  • Development and evaluation of camera electronics for CTA (FlashCam, CHEC)
  • Data analysis and simulations for CTA (ctapipe, fermipy, gammapy, ctools)
  • Improvements to the analysis of H.E.S.S. Phase-II data (deep learning)
  • Multi-messenger observations of high-energy sources


ECAP offers a strong environment in the field of astroparticle physics. Research in the institute includes (but is not limited to) involvement in the Fermi-LAT, H.E.S.S., CTA, eROSITA, ANTARES, IceCube and KM3NeT.
Successful applicants should have or be in the process of completing a PhD degree in Astrophysics or Physics or related disciplines. They should have a research background and provide evidence of outstanding potential. Relevant experience in hardware and software development and ability to work in a team is seen as beneficial. Guiding and advising students in their PhD, Master’s and Bachelor’s theses is expected. Involvement in teaching at a level of 5 hours/week during lecture periods is obligatory.


The full-time positions are available from 1 September 2018. The initial contract will be for 3 years, with an option of an extension by a maximum of further 3 years. The contract will be in salary grade E13/A13. Application deadline is 1 August 2018. Later applications may be considered until the position is filled.


The University of Erlangen-Nürnberg wishes to increase the participation of women in its research activities. Therefore applications by women are particularly welcome. The University of Erlangen-Nürnberg is committed to employing more handicapped individuals and especially encourages them to apply. Applications, including a Statement of Interest, CV and contact information of reference persons should be sent to Prof. Dr. Stefan Funk (