Applied Physicist (EP-ADT-TR-2018-72-LD)

  • Geneva, Switzerland
  • Contract

Company Description

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. Using the world's largest and most complex scientific instruments, they study the basic constituents of matter - fundamental particles that are made to collide together at close to the speed of light. The process gives physicists clues about how particles interact, and provides insights into the fundamental laws of nature. Find out more on

Job Description


Are you an Applied Physicist with extensive hands-on experience in trigger systems for a large High-Energy Physics experiment? Would you like to contribute to upgrading, developing, maintaining and operating the system for one of the largest particle-physics experiments in the world? Do you have strong skills in C++ programming? CERN, take part!

Contribute to the operation and maintenance of the existing ATLAS first-level central trigger system, and to the development, testing and commissioning of upgrades for it, with particular emphasis on the associated online and offline software.

You will join the:

  • Experimental Physics Department (EP), which carries out basic research in the field of experimental physics. It aims at providing a stimulating scientific atmosphere and remains an important reference centre for the European physics community. It contributes to the education and training of young scientists.
  • ATLAS Trigger and Data Acquisition Group (ADT), which has major responsibilities in the trigger and data acquisition system. Its activities span every aspect, from development and operation of custom trigger hardware, to high-level physics selection algorithms via data conveyance and control infrastructures.
  • Trigger Section (TR), which plays an important role in both the first-level trigger and the high-level trigger. This position is specifically in the first-level trigger area, where CERN is in charge of the central trigger system that is based on custom digital electronics.


As an Applied Physicist in the TR Section, you will contribute to CERN’s responsibilities on the ATLAS Trigger Activity and the Trigger/DAQ System. You will be expected to work on a wide range of first-level trigger aspects, including:

  • The development and maintenance of online and/or offline software associated with the central trigger.
  • Testing, commissioning, operation and maintenance of the system.
  • Contributing to improvements and upgrades of the system.


PhD or equivalent relevant experience in the field of physics or a related field.


  • Extensive experience in trigger systems for a large High-Energy Physics experiment, including: understanding requirements from a physics and technical perspective; designing, developing, testing, commissioning, operating and maintaining trigger systems.
  • Proven experience in object-oriented C++ programming in a large, collaborative software project.

Technical competencies:

  • Knowledge of programming techniques and languages: solid knowledge of C++.
  • Simulation, design and development of trigger, data acquisition chains.
  • Testing, diagnosing and optimization of software.
  • Assembly and integration of detectors in the context of the trigger for a large high-energy physics experiment and including commissioning and operation.
  • Testing and measurement of digital electronic circuits, in particular the testing of trigger systems and of associated software and hardware components.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Working in teams: understanding when teamwork is required to achieve the best results; including others accordingly and sharing information.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: demonstrating a willingness to accept changing circumstances; supporting initiatives for change.
  • Managing self: remaining objective, focussed and productive in a stressful environment; focusing on solutions rather than problems.
  • Solving problems: assimilating large quantities of information, identifying key issues and formulating conclusions clearly and concisely.

Language skills:

Spoken and written English: 

  • Ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports, and to make oral presentations.
  • The knowledge of the French language or the willingness to acquire this would be an advantage.

Additional Information

Eligibility and closing date:

Diversity has been an integral part of CERN's mission since its foundation and is an established value of the Organization. Employing a diverse workforce is central to our success. We welcome applications from all Member States and Associate Member States. (

This vacancy will be filled as soon as possible, and applications should normally reach us no later than 12.08.2018.

Employment Conditions

Contract type: Limited duration contract (5 years). Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

  • Work in Radiation Areas.
  • Work during nights, Sundays and official holidays.
  • Interventions in underground installations.

Job grade: 6-7

Job reference: EP-ADT-TR-2018-72-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Applied Physicist

Please make sure you have all the documents needed to hand as you start your application, as once it is submitted, you will not be able to upload any documents or edit your application further

Privacy Policy