Civil Service Position at NASA Johnson Space Center: Small bodies and near-Earth objects

Status Report From: Lunar and Planetary Institute
Posted: Monday, March 15, 2010

The Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science (ARES) Directorate at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) announces an opening for a civil service research scientist in the Astromaterials Research Office.  The incumbent will serve as a Planetary and Exploration Science Expert and will be expected to conduct fundamental research and to support mission planning for exploration of small planetary bodies (asteroids, near-Earth objects, comets). A Ph.D. or equivalent experience in chemistry, physics, geology, geochemistry, planetary sciences, astronomy, or a related field is required.  The position requires an expert knowledge of advanced principles and practices of planetary and space sciences, with detailed scientific competence that enables the incumbent to investigate and provide consultative services on the entire range of complex scientific questions within the area of expertise.  The position will be filled at the GS-14 level.

Duty Statement: The incumbent serves as a Planetary and Exploration Science Expert in the Astromaterials Research Office.  The incumbent conducts fundamental research and supports mission planning for exploration of small planetary bodies (asteroids, near-Earth objects, comets) and serves as lead scientist, complementing or augmenting these activities within the organization. Specifically:

-Actively participates in mission planning and development for human and robotic missions to small bodies or other exploration destinations.

-Interacts with representatives of academia, industry, and other NASA centers in formulating and executing plans for current and future solar system exploration.

-Serves as principal investigator on competitive proposals for the acquisition of external funding to support independent and original planetary research, with an emphasis on small bodies.

-Performs independent research in planetary materials and publishes results in peer-reviewed scientific journals, as well as delivers presentations at internationally-recognized planetary science conferences.

-Is knowledgeable on geological evolution of Earth, the Moon, planets, and solar system, and is able to formulate scientific studies to explore frontier questions regarding planetary or solar system evolution.

-Effectively communicates scientific and technical information both verbally and in writing.

All applications must be made through the website, using position number JS10D0059.  The application opportunity will open on 19 March 2010 and remain open for three weeks, closing 9 April 2010.  Please address inquiries to Drs. David Draper (Manager, Astromaterials Research Office,, Gregory Byrne (Assistant Director, ARES, or Eileen Stansbery (Director, ARES,

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