Senior Muon Scientist for Technical Development

ISIS is a world-leading centre for research in the physical and life sciences at the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory near Oxford in the United Kingdom. Our suite of neutron and muon instruments gives unique insights into the properties of materials on the atomic scale. We support a national and international community of more than 3000 scientists for research into subjects ranging from clean energy and the environment, pharmaceuticals and health care, through to nanotechnology and materials engineering, catalysis and polymers, and on to fundamental studies of materials.

ISIS has five muon spectrometers for condensed matter and molecular studies using the muon spin rotation/relaxation/resonance technique. Two of these are located on the Japanese RIKEN-RAL Muon Facility on one side of the ISIS experimental hall, and a further three are located on the European Muon Facility on the other side of the ISIS hall. These spectrometers are used by researchers from around the world for muon measurements in the areas of magnetism, superconductivity, charge transport, molecular and chemical studies, and modelling hydrogen behaviour in, for example, semiconductors or proton conductors. Further details can be found at


We require a leader who is an expert in technical aspects of the muon technique, including beamline development and diagnostics, and data analysis and simulation, in order to further develop the muon technique at ISIS as a resource for the UK and worldwide muon community. As one of only four places in the world where muon studies are possible, ISIS provides unique capabilities within Europe for muon studies of materials. The continued technical development of the facility is essential to meet the needs of the external user community, and we require someone with unique skills, a world expert in this area to progress this work.


List of Duties / Work Programme / Responsibilities


Lead the development of the ISIS muon beamline design. This will include the development of ISIS muon beamline components and instruments, including modelling using TURTLE, TRANSPORT and GEANT4.


Lead the technical development of the ISIS muon facilities more broadly, to provide for the science needs of the external research community.  This will include consideration of the RIKEN-RAL muon facility and its development into the future, and will concern data rate and frequency response developments, instrument upgrades and other methods of improving the performance of the facility.


Providing technical expertise in the areas of muon data analysis, simulation and modelling, including development of tools for use within the ISIS Mantid data analysis and visualization framework.


Lead the development of the in-situ laser stimulation of materials including, currently, delivering the ISIS commitment to a large European grant in this area.


Support for visiting scientists using the ISIS muon instruments. This will include liaison with visitors on all aspects of their experiments, proactive support for experiments during visits to enable researchers to gain the most from their muon experimental time, and subsequent help with data analysis as required.


Maintenance and development of one of the spectrometers specifically, including helping to ensure the spectrometer is in a fit state for user experiments, calibration at the start of experimental periods, scheduling of accepted experiments through liaison with visiting research teams, and development of the spectrometer and associated sample environment equipment according to experimental and scientific needs.


The continuation or development of a personal and collaborative programme of original research that will include the use of the muon method in areas of condensed matter physics or chemistry.


Promotion of the muon technique through, for example, presenting research which employs the muon method at conferences and through publications.


Contributing to the corporate activities of the ISIS muon groups as they arise, for example helping with training courses using the muon method and leading the larger instrument development projects.


Contacts and Communication


You will be based at ISIS within the ISIS muon group. You will be expected to work with the other group members, and the RIKEN group, who are working on other aspects of the muon technique or muon instrumentation. You will have regular contact with ISIS technical and support groups, and will need to liaise closely with these groups as experiments are carried out. You will be involved with, and will give technical and scientific support to, senior researchers from the UK and elsewhere who will come to ISIS to use the muon technique – (s)he will need to be able to explain experimental details to researchers with much less experience of muon methods. You will be expected to publicise the muon method through work in peer-reviewed journals and at international conferences. You will interact with senior muon scientists and muon facility personnel from around the world in order to consider the science needs of the muon community and to liaise with other facilities regarding technical developments.


Personal Skills and Attributes

A PhD in a relevant physical science

Experience of the muon technique, muon beamline modelling and muon data analysis is essential.


For more information and to apply, click here.

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