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Spaceflight Detector Characterisation Engineer

Unit :  Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Salary :  £37,099 to £44,263
Location :  Milton Keynes
Please quote reference :  21478
Full Time, Fixed-term post for 1 year
Closing Date :  8 March, 2024 - 12:00

Interview date:  Interviews will be held in person at our Milton Keynes Campus on Monday 25th March 2024. Applicants shortlisted for interview will be expected to deliver a 10-minute presentation on their relevant skills and experience and how they would bring this to the benefit of this project.

It is expected that the successful candidate will work full time in the research environment at Milton Keynes.

Change your career, change lives

The Open University is the UK’s largest university, a world leader in flexible part-time education combining a mission to widen access to higher education with research excellence, transforming lives through education.

The role 

The role holder will have responsibility for the design, testing and analysis of data from detector devices to be used in future spaceflight instrumentation.  The Open University has a leading role in multiple upcoming and potential future spaceflight imaging instruments, destined to explore the Moon and Mars. This role will involve the characterisation of spaceflight detector technology. This will be achieved through the design and implementation of experiments in the laboratory and at external facilities to investigate the performance of various detector technologies for application in major future space exploration activities such as the International Mars Ice Mapper mission, the EnVision mission to Venus and the JUICE mission to the Jupiter system.  The role holder will have the opportunity to interact with the staff at the European Space Agency, NASA, the Canadian Space Agency and Japanese Space Agency.     

The postholder will join the vibrant Centre for Electronic Imaging and Atmospheric Research and Surface Exploration groups within the School of Physical Sciences, making use of the group’s specialist detector characterisation facilities based in the STEM Faculty laboratories.  Appropriate training in detector characterisation techniques will be provided for applicants, where needed. 

Skills and experience

  • The role holder will have a minimum of МSc or equivalent qualification in physics, electronic engineering or a closely related subject;
  • Good understanding of semiconductor physics and image sensor operation;
  • Proficiency with data acquisition systems and data processing software.

More information can be provided via a link to the Job Description.

To further understand the technical aspects of the role prior to applying please contact Manish Patel (

If you would like to discuss the application or recruitment process before making an application, please contact Marian Cattermole at Resourcing Hub on 01908 655544 or quoting the reference VRF 21478

What you get in return

We have a strong commitment to providing training and development in and beyond your current role. This includes thorough induction into the organisation and regular reviews of your training and development needs.

We also offer a great range of benefits that support our employees and their families for the long term. Staff Benefits include an attractive pension proposition and 33 days holiday per annum pro rata, plus Bank Holidays and Christmas closure days.

How to apply

Unless otherwise stated in the advert, all applications are completed online via the instructions on The OU Job’s page. Applications submitted via 3rd party websites will not be received.

Access details for disabled applicants are available from the Resourcing Hub, telephone: 01908 655544, quoting the vacancy reference above.

To apply for this role please submit the following as one document;

  • CV
  • Personal statement, up to 1,000 words, you should set out in your statement why you’re interested in this role and provide examples of where your skills and experience meet the required competencies for this role as detailed in the job and person specification.

Please save your document with the following file name as appropriate to the vacancy you are applying for: reference, surname, forename.

You will need to have your documents ready ahead of submitting the electronic application. Please click on the APPLY NOW button below to be redirected to our application page.


You will receive updates regarding your application from Please ensure this email address is added to your list of trusted senders so it does not go to your junk folder.

You can view your application communications on the Candidate portal.

Find out more about us and our mission by watching this short video (you will be taken to YouTube by clicking this link).

The Open University is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion which is reflected in our mission to be open to people, places, methods and ideas. We aim to foster a diverse and inclusive environment so that all in our OU community can reach their potential.  We recognise that different people bring different perspectives, ideas, knowledge, and culture, and that this difference brings great strength.  We strive to recruit, retain and develop the careers of a diverse pool of students and staff, and particularly encourage applications from all underrepresented groups. We also aspire to make The Open University a supportive workplace for all through our policies, services and staff networks.

Job related information : 

File job-description 21478.docx135.89 KB

Posting Date :  9 February, 2024 - 09:30

Contact us

If you have any queries or questions about the recruitment process, or regarding your application, please contact:

If you have any non-urgent feedback regarding the recruitment process, please contact: