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Gravitational Waves & Multi-Messenger Astronomy

Gravitational Wave Data Analysis, Black Hole & Neutron Star Mergers, Gravitational Wave Sources & Their Electromagnetic Counterparts

Image Credit: NSF/LIGO/Sonoma State University/A. Simonnet

As a discipline, astronomy is constantly being pushed forward by new technologies that transform how we observe the Universe. Multi-messenger astronomy is the synthesis of observations using light, gravitational waves, and astro particles. Combining different information from different types of signals allows us to better understand the underlying physical processes that govern how astrophysical systems evolve and change, and helps us get a better handle on the uncertainties and statistics that are inherent to every observation we make. Additionally, numerical simulations are another type of “messenger” that can be combined with observations to better understand astrophysical phenomena. In CIERA, we have broad expertise and interest in multi-messenger astronomy, particularly at the interface of electromagnetic and gravitational-wave observations.

Research at CIERA

Compact objects, such as black holes, neutron stars, and white dwarfs, often exist in pairs which eventually merge. These systems are strong sources of gravitational waves, and their nature and the environment in which they reside has a profound effect on possible associated electromagnetic signatures.

Professor Fong’s group looks for EM counterparts to GW events with observing programs in Hawaii, Chile, and Arizona. They are particularly interested in studying short gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) whose progenitors are likely neutron star mergers with other neutron stars or black holes.

Professor Margutti’s group makes observations of GW counterparts, studying the non-thermal emission associated with the formation and launching of relativistic jets by the compact merger in X-rays and radio.

Opportunity

Postdoctoral Positions in Time-Domain and Multi-messenger Astrophysics

Deadline: 11:59pm, December 1, 2019

The Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA) at Northwestern University invites applications for a postdoctoral associate research position with Professor Raffaella Margutti in the area of Time-Domain and Multi-messenger Astrophysics. The subject of investigation includes supernovae, tidal disruptions of stars by super-massive black holes, gamma-ray bursts, and electromagnetic counterparts of gravitational wave sources.

Postdoctoral Associate Positions in Theoretical Astronomy & Astrophysics

Deadline: 11:59pm, December 1, 2019

Northwestern University expects to offer postdoctoral associate positions in theoretical astronomy and astrophysics starting in fall 2020. These positions will be part of the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA) at Northwestern. Successful applicants will benefit from interaction with a broad interdisciplinary group of researchers…

Postdoctoral Associate Positions in Observational Astronomy & Astrophysics

Deadline: 11:59pm, December 1, 2019

Image Credit: Ethan Tweedie Photography/W. M. Keck Observatory (from NASA.gov) Northwestern University expects to offer postdoctoral associate positions in observational and instrumental astronomy and astrophysics starting in fall 2020. Of particular interest this year are: candidates who will work with Prof. Ulmer on the application of magnetic thin films to control deformable or deployable normal

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