Organisation STFC
Organisation Detail Science and Technology Facilities Council
Reference Number IRC250880
Location Didcot See on Map
Salary £19404 - £19404
Date Posted 11 September 2019
Contract Type Student - Sandwich Course
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 27 October 2019
Interview Date 25 November 2019

Brief Description

Salary: £19,404
Grade: UKRI- STU
Contract Type: Fixed Term 12 Months
Hours: Full Time
Closing Date: 27th October 2019
Interview Date: Interviews will be held during the week commencing: 25th November 2019

STFC - CLF - Laser Scientist for CALTA - Industrial Placement


The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is one of Europe’s largest research organisations. We’re trusted to support, enable and undertake pioneering projects in an amazing diversity of fields. Through world-class facilities and people, we’re driving ground-breaking advances in science, technology and Engineering. For more information on STFC please view one of our videos -   


STFC is one of nine organisations that have been brought together to create UK Research and Innovation (UKRI); a new organisation with a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation.


Each year we offer opportunities to undergraduate students to gain practical experience, working alongside technical experts at the forefront of scientific research. We offer an invaluable experience with exposure to world class science and technology, and the opportunity to develop working relationships that continue well after your placement has finished.


STFC consists of several distinct departments which each focus on a different specialism within science, technology, innovation and support, yet work together to achieve STFC’s grand ambitions. Different departments may look for placement students with similar skills, so you should consider which role/s are most suitable to you, and apply for up to two of these. See all of our current Industrial Placements here.


STFC’s Central Laser Facility (CLF) is at the forefront of global development and scientific exploitation of high power lasers. In addition to the high power laser systems operated as user facilities, the CLF is also home to the Centre for Advanced Laser Technology and Applications (CALTA).  CALTA aims to develop high energy laser amplifier technology and applications for science and industry.  CALTA built the world’s first kilowatt-level high energy pulsed diode pumped solid state laser with a world leading 100 J of energy at 10 Hz (1kW) for the HiLASE facility in the Czech Republic and have provided a similar system for the European XFEL (Germany).  CALTA’s DiPOLE10 prototype system continues to provide a valuable experimental laser system platform with which to test new technologies and is under constant development.  The CALTA team of scientists and engineers are working on several challenging international projects simultaneously.


CALTA is beginning an exciting new project to advance high energy laser amplifier technology and applications through designing and building new state-of-the-art systems. We offer the opportunity to be involved in a variety of different activities including computer modelling, enhancing diagnostic capabilities, supporting the development to operate DiPOLE at higher pulse repetition rates, and playing an active role in cutting-edge experimental campaigns both in the UK, using DiPOLE10, and with our international partners at HiLASE in the Czech Republic.  The position offered is within a diverse team environment working directly with staff in the CALTA team and CLF engineers.  You will;


·         support experiments with world renowned scientists and solve problems as they occur

·         operate laser and cryogenic systems

·         analyse data and report your findings to the team by written report and presentations

·         enhance the DiPOLE laser system, both on your own and as part of the team

·         have a project assigned which will be flexible allowing you opportunities to direct and influence outcomes


In the laser laboratory, you will operate, adjust and control lasers and associated electrical and mechanical equipment in a standing position, often for several hours in the course of the working day; for safety reasons, it is not permitted to sit down in the laser laboratories. Mechanical precision is an important element of the role and you must be able to see and adjust the position of laser beams, fiducials, pinholes and other mechanical elements to sub-millimetre accuracy.


Please also be aware that lighting is variable and will flash repetitively as a direct consequence of the laser operation. 

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at

The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.

Criteria to be assessed at Shortlisting (S), Interview (I) or both (S&I)




·         At university, enrolled on an undergraduate degree course and required or have requested to take a year out of studies to gain experience within industry (S)

·         Right to live and work in the UK (S)

·         First two years of degree course in physics or a closely related subject, with grades corresponding to a 2:1 or higher. (S)

·         Passed experimental physics laboratory course (S&I)

·         Understanding relevant fundamental principles from their university course (I)

·         Ability to apply knowledge of science to solve problems (I)

·         Experience of standard computer packages (e.g. Office) (S)

·         Enthusiastic with an interest in lasers (S&I)

·         Highly motivated (I)

·         Able to work independently and as part of a team as required (S&I)

·         Effective communication skills (S&I)

·         Good problem-solving skills (I)

·         Responsible approach to health and safety (I)




·         Computer programming skills (S&I)

·         Experience working in a research or laboratory environment (I)

·         Experience working with lasers (I)

·         Have taken relevant modules such as

             Optics/lasers (S)

       Programming/data analysis (S)


UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Employee Benefits
UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent
We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities
We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

To apply please download the application form and save it to your pc. You must upload a CV and completed copy of the application form. Please save include the IRC reference number and your name in the filename of all documents uploaded to your application.

Please right click on this link and select ‘save target as' to save the application form to your desktop.

STFC Industrial Placement Application form

To be eligible you must be studying a recognised degree that requires you to undertake an Industrial Placement or have permission from your University to take a year out of your studies to undertake a placement. You must also have the right to work in the UK.

You can apply for up to two Industrial Placements; You will only need to complete ONE application form. However please ensure that you upload the application form to all applications and ensure the relevant reference number (e.g. IRC205817) is included the filename of each document that you upload.

Closing date: 27th October 2019

Interview / assessment date: 25th– 28th of November 2019

As this job does not fulfil the Home Office Code of Practice criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK. At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK. You can check your eligibility here:

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