University of Colorado CIRES/GSD Science and Technology PRA in Boulder, Colorado

CIRES/GSD Science and Technology Professional Research Assistant

The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado Boulder conducts collaborative projects for science and technology innovation for the weather industry, software development, and system administration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) located at the Earth System Research Lab (ESRL), Global Systems Division (GSD) in Boulder, CO.

The Evaluation and Decision Support (EDS) Branch within GSD develops state-of-the-art environmental forecast, decision support, visualization, and evaluation capabilities to provide scientifically robust forecast assessment tools, concepts, and analyses to support the weather decision-making process. EDS customers include military and civilian forecasters, air traffic controllers, air traffic managers, airline dispatchers, and general aviation pilots. EDS collaborates with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the National Weather Service (NWS), and the Departments of Defense and Transportation, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), foreign governments (e.g., Taiwan), and may partner with the private sector.

The Weather Information Systems Evolution (WISE) Section within GSD/EDS develops weather-related software, computer systems, and associated tools and applications used by numerous government agencies (within and outside of the US), with core partners consisting of the NWS, the BLM, the US Air Force, and the Central Weather Bureau of Taiwan. The WISE Section infuses advanced science and technology into innovative applications and systems for weather-related activities such as forecast operations, visualization, and decision support services.

The GSD/WISE Section is seeking qualified applicants that can serve as a science and technology transition lead. Primary duties will be split between the following two activity themes:

  • Exploring, researching, developing, and/or leading innovative projects, or components of projects, that infuse science and advanced technologies into weather-related operations (including forecast and warning operations, decision support services, etc.).

  • As an AWIPS system expert, manage and maintain the evolution of AWIPS software through installation, configuration, and upgrading approximately 15 developer workstations used for software development and evaluation. This includes working with developers to improve platform uptime, exploring innovating platforms, networking, and virtualizing systems. In addition, duties will involve software engineering/development for the evolution of the AWIPS system, and potentially other similar systems.

Some examples of activities, applications or projects that could be worked on include: Warn-on-Forecast, Forecasting a Continuum of Environmental Threats (FACETs), Hazard Services, AWIPS applications, fire and smoke applications, and prototype development of non-AWIPS systems.


/Approximately 50% for science and technology innovation/project development and leadership for GSD/

  • Participate in the design and development of applications, tools, and systems

  • Science and technology innovation to support forecast and decision support services

  • Exploit advanced technologies including remote sensing technologies and numerical weather prediction systems

  • When appropriate and beneficial, partner across Labs, Divisions, and Branches

  • Close partnering with users such as forecasters, EM community, etc. including site visits

  • Travel to workshops, conferences, meetings, and test bed activities

  • Communicate with stakeholders

  • Work with a small team of scientists and developers

  • Publish and/or present findings, results, or activities to the scientific/technological community

/Approximately 50% for AWIPS system management/

  • Install and upgrade AWIPS II as new versions become available

  • Support and mentor developers on AWIPS installation and configuration

  • Participate in innovative efforts to explore and adopt new platforms including cloud computing, utilizing virtual technologies, and other network-based designs.

  • Write installation instructions

  • Develop training/orientation for new developer hires that fit the organizational goals

  • Direct the delivery of developed products/code to collaborators, including building RPM packages


·MS degree in a science or technological field

  • Must be a U.S. Citizen or Green Card Holder

· Ability to pass a National Agency Check with Inquiries (NACI, federal background check)

  • Knowledge of NOAA/National Weather Service operations and forecast/warning decision making processes

  • Expertise in the installation and configuration of AWIPS software with at least 5 years experience

  • Adept at troubleshooting complex technical problems

  • Working knowledge of Python, Java, and Eclipse and have developed major pieces of code in at least one of these languages.

  • Demonstrated creativity in developing unique solutions to new or unusual problems

  • Effective in communicating ideas with management and colleagues

  • Reliable and self-motivated

  • Comfortable working in an agile-like and creative team environment

  • Adept at time management and working on multiple projects concurrently


  • PhD in a science or technological field

Job: *Faculty

Organization: *B0001 -- Boulder Campus

Title: CIRES/GSD Science and Technology PRA

Location: Boulder

Requisition ID: 11290