Do you feel awestruck by the sheer vastness of our universe? Do movies like Star Trek or Interstellar mesmerize you? If you aspire to study the planets, the solar system, black holes, and other aspects of the universe, you could consider careers in space science and technology; especially careers in astronomy and astrophysics. [space]
What you should know about astrophysics careers | Careers | Ordinary Involvement
What are jobs in astrophysics?
Jobs in astrophysics are positions that require an advanced understanding of astrophysics. Astrophysics is a branch of astronomy concerned with understanding the nature of celestial and cosmic bodies. Astrophysicists use widely accepted physics theories to explain phenomena in space. Astrophysics jobs may exist in space exploration, scientific research and education. Along with an in-depth understanding of physics, astrophysics jobs may also require specialized training in complex mathematic theory, chemistry, biology and astronomy.
Astrophysics jobs to consider
Below are 10 astrophysics jobs to consider as a career path:
Primary duties: Laboratory technicians assist researchers and scientists with in-lab processes and experiments. In astrophysics, laboratory technicians may help to conduct physics experiments, analyze materials and objects harvested in space and perform tests on vehicles and equipment intended for space exploration. Laboratory technician jobs in astrophysics are often entry-level positions available to recent graduates of a relevant degree program.
Primary duties: Fund managers help organizations collect funds for their nonprofit programs. Many astrophysics programs, including research, receive funding from donations. These donations may come from corporations, individuals or academic institutes. Fund managers distribute these funds appropriately, record their use in the program and ensure that all funding complies with federal mandates and regulations.
Primary duties: A systems analyst is a technology professional specializing in designing, creating, implementing and monitoring information systems. In an astrophysics role, these professionals may help to build and maintain complex computer systems that store astronomical data and research. They may work in laboratories, space exploration centers or universities. Systems analysts often work as part of a team to continually update, monitor and improve their systems.
Primary duties: A project manager plans and supervises complex and long-term projects. A project manager working in an astrophysics role may plan research studies, experiments, the designing and building of spacecraft or space exploration missions. In order to succeed as a project manager in astrophysics, these individuals need to have an advanced understanding of astronomy, space engineering and the scientific principles behind astrophysics theories. They may plan each phase of a project, assign tasks to different departments and team members and monitor project completion.
Primary duties: A research engineer helps complete research studies and initiatives. In astrophysics, they may conduct research in order to assist with the design and construction of spacecraft, space observation tools and suits for astronauts and aerospace pilots. They often work as members of a team to research various aspects of a project, conduct tests to ensure the safety and functioning of designs and report their findings to project managers, directors and senior scientists.
Primary duties: A director works to oversee all functions of an organization. In astrophysics, these professionals often work closely with project managers and senior scientists to monitor the completion of various projects. Directors of astrophysics programs may also communicate with investors, government bodies and academic institutes to request funding, provide project updates and discuss future opportunities.
Primary duties: A senior scientist is the leader of a scientific team. Most often, this involves research and development teams. As a senior scientist in an astrophysics role, these professionals may lead a team of engineers, research technicians and other scientists to conduct experiments, complete research studies, develop spacecraft, observation tools and consult with project managers and directors to fulfill common objectives.
Primary duties: A research scientist is an expert in their field who researches various topics to assist in data collection and project completion. As astrophysics research scientists, these professionals often work in a lab setting to observe astronomical phenomena, explore theories to explain phenomena, discuss these theories with colleagues and collect data from space exploration vehicles and observation tools. They often work closely with aerospace engineers to design and develop spacecraft and other space exploration vehicles.
Primary duties: An aerospace engineer designs and builds spacecraft and space exploration vehicles. They often work with a team of scientists, researchers, project managers and other engineers to create safe and operational spacecraft. They may design space shuttles, satellites, probes, telescopes, as well as unmanned and manned vehicles. They may perform tests on new vehicles or perform maintenance checks and routine inspections of existing vehicles and crafts.
Primary duties: A director of technology is responsible for monitoring the technical operations of an organization by managing the efficiency of its network. In an astrophysics role, these professionals often lead the development of laboratory computer systems and computer systems aboard spacecraft, telescopes and satellites. Directors of technology often lead a team of other technology specialists to design, install, monitor and repair the complex computer systems needed for space exploration and interspace communication.
What jobs can you do with an astrophysics degree?
- Aerospace Research Scientist.
- Computer Programmer.
- Environmental Analyst.
Is astrophysics a good career?
Is it hard to get a job in astrophysics?
To be hired as a NASA scientist, you need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in physics, astrophysics, astronomy, geology, space science or a similar field.