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Young Graduate Trainee for Wave Interaction Analysis

  • Organization: ESA - European Space Agency
  • Location:
  • Grade: F1 - Young Graduate Trainee - Junior level
  • Occupational Groups:
  • Closing Date: 2019-12-15

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Young Graduate Traineeship Opportunity in the Directorate of Technology, Engineering and Quality.

ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. Applications from women are encouraged.

Young Graduate Trainee for Wave Interaction Analysis

This post is classified F1.


ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands 

Our team and mission

Within the RF Payload and Technology Division, the Wave Interaction and Propagation Section focuses on analysis of the interaction of electromagnetic waves (microwave to optical wavelengths) with the natural environment in support of telecom, navigation and remote-sensing activities. This includes theoretical modelling and experimental data analysis, as well as developing statistical models and mitigation or retrieval algorithms. The Section works in close collaboration with other areas within the Agency.

Candidates interested are encouraged to visit the ESA website:

Field(s) of activity

Wave interaction with the natural environment is a critical element when one aims at assessing the impact of the atmosphere on the performance of space communication links or on the accuracy of satellite navigation solutions; it is also a key component in the generation of scientific or operational products from remote-sensing instruments (for Earth observation or planetary science). This field covers the development of electromagnetic interaction models (from microwave to optical wavelengths) with natural media (atmosphere, ionosphere, vegetation, water surfaces, etc.), and their use to support system design, performance assessment (e.g. link budget, image quality) and the development of retrieval algorithms for remote sensing. The field also covers validation activities based on experimentally-acquired datasets.

In that framework, examples of fields of investigation for this Traineeship include:

  • analysis of data from microwave radiometer campaigns for calibration and correction of tropospheric delay for radar altimetry or radio-science;
  • propagation data collection and analysis (mainly focused on navigation-related instrumentation for ionosphere and multipath characterisation);
  • modelling of atmospheric depolarisation on slant paths, simulation and experimental K-, Q- and V-band data analysis;
  • use of high-resolution numerical weather prediction systems in support of system design, operations and for experimental campaigns;
  • modelling of the propagation through planetary atmospheres;
  • making use of physical interaction models and experimental observations to support machine learning for the inversion of remote-sensing data;
  • optical and radar interaction with land and sea surfaces.

You will be offered a task along the lines of those listed above. Your background will be duly considered when assigning the task. The nature of the work can be adapted to your skills but will typically involve some model development combined with the analysis of datasets (Earth observation, propagation) as well as prototype software implementation and testing.

Technical competencies
Knowledge of relevant technical domains
Relevant experience gained during internships/project work
Breadth of exposure coming from past and/or current research/activities
Knowledge of ESA and its programmes/projects
Behavioural competencies
Self Motivation
Continuous Learning
Cross-Cultural Sensitivity

You should have just completed, or be in the final year of a university course at Master's level (or equivalent) in a technical or scientific discipline related to the traineeship.

Additional requirements

If you have acquired the programming skills necessary for scientific software implementation, this will be seen as an asset.

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset. 

You should demonstrate good interpersonal skills and the capacity to work both independently and as part of a team.  

During the interview your motivation and overall professional perspective/career goals will also be explored.

Other information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.

The closing date for applications is  15 December 2019.

If you require support with your application due to a disability, please email


Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Nationals from Slovenia, as an Associate Member, or Canada as a Cooperating State, can apply as well as those from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia as European Cooperating States (ECS).

Priority will first be given to candidates from under-represented Member States.

In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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