Applied Physicist: Electrical Engineering-Superconductivity (TE-MPE-PE-2020-10-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


Within the TE department, the MPE group provides support to the operation of the entire accelerator complex and develops, operates and maintains state of the art technology for magnet circuit protection and interlock systems.

The superconducting magnet circuits of CERN’s largest accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), operate with currents of up to 12 kA and stored energies of more than 1 GJ. The TE-MPE-PE section develops tools to better understand the behaviour and protection of these circuits, conducts studies of emerging protection issues, and monitors the evolution of their performance, see also

Would you like to become a key actor in all design studies for the magnet circuits of upcoming upgrades of the LHC and future accelerators? CERN, Take Part!


As an applied physicist in the team, you will:

  • Find solutions to issues emerging in the powering or protection of LHC circuits, and help to optimize the operation of these circuits as well as the circuit designs for the High Luminosity LHC upgrade project (HL-LHC).
  • Contribute to the further development of specific computer tools/models, often based on commercial software, as part of the framework for the simulation of steady-state and transient effects in superconducting wires, cables, magnets, and circuits.
  • Cross-check the above-mentioned tools against other existing computer codes (if possible) and validate the tools by means of experimental data obtained during magnet reception acceptance tests or during operation in the LHC.
  • Coordinate the development of computer tools to monitor the behaviour of the superconducting magnet circuits in the LHC, and to further automate the analysis of relevant post-mortem events.
  • Supervise technical and doctoral students for R&D studies on magnet circuit protection.


PhD or equivalent relevant experience in the field of Applied Physics, Electrical Engineering, Superconductivity or a related field.


The experience required for this post is:

  • Experience in the field of electromagnetics, thermodynamics, and preferably superconductivity.
  • Experience in modern simulation techniques and, preferably, working experience with commercial multi-physics modelling tools.
  • Experience in the field of superconducting magnet technology would be an asset.

Technical competencies:

  • Knowledge and application of computational methods and tools in electromagnetism: electromagnetic calculation & modelling.
  • Knowledge and application of numerical modelling in fluid mechanics and/or heat transfer: thermal analysis & modelling.
  • Design and modelling of protection systems for superconducting magnets: quench phenomena and protection of superconducting magnets.
  • Knowledge of programming techniques and languages: java, Python, MatLab, C.
  • Use of modelling and simulation software (finite-element, Comsol, Ansys).

Behavioural competencies:

  • Achieving results: delivering high-quality work on time and fulfilling expectations. Having a structured and organised approach towards work; being able to set priorities and plan tasks with results in mind following through on new ideas and innovations; planning and implementing application.
  • Solving problems: recognizing what is essential; discriminating between important and peripheral information and being able to see the whole picture. Testing solutions for long-term suitability, cross-checking with all concerned before implementation.
  • Working in teams: working well in groups and readily fitting into a team; participating fully and taking an active role in team activities. Understanding when teamwork is required to achieve the best results; including others accordingly and sharing information. Cooperating constructively with others in the pursuit of team goals; balancing personal goals with team goals.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: demonstrating openness to new ideas and situations. Adapting quickly and resourcefully to shifting priorities and requirements
  • Bringing the best out of people: taking time to listen and to consider team members' ideas, opinions and concerns. Encouraging ideas and initiatives from others; fostering collaboration and team cohesion.

Language skills:

Spoken and written English: the ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports, and/or to make oral presentations. Basic knowledge of French language or an undertaking to acquire it rapidly.

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 04.03.2020.

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 during nights, Sundays and official holidays, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Shift work, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Stand-by duty, when required by the needs of the Organization.

Job grade: 6-7

Job reference: TE-MPE-PE-2020-10-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Applied Physicist

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