The Paul Scherrer Institute PSI is the largest research institute for natural and engineering sciences within Switzerland. We perform cutting-edge research in the fields of matter and materials, energy and environment and human health. By performing fundamental and applied research, we work on sustainable solutions for major challenges facing society, science and economy. PSI is committed to the training of future generations. Therefore, about one quarter of our staff are post-docs, post-graduates or apprentices. Altogether, PSI employs 2100 people.

The Science IT section is responsible for supporting a range of world-class facilities and experiments conducted at PSI. The section currently has expertise and provides support in HPC and cloud computing for data intensive experiments through to experiment domain expertise and low-level algorithm development and deployment on GPU technology. We are also engaged in a number of national and international collaborations with similar institutions across the globe, all with the common goal of maximizing the use of large-scale facilities for science by the provision of cutting edge IT infrastructure and software.

For Development and Consulting we are looking for a
Software Scientist
For the Jungfraujoch Data Acquisition Pipeline
Your tasks
PSI is actively developing a cutting edge data acquisition system to handle data produced by innovative PSI detectors at 20-100 GB/s data rates. To enable performance at such high frame rates, we utilize task-specific hardware - tailor-made IBM POWER servers with FPGA network cards attached in a memory coherent way. Your task will be to lead development of software CPU layer of this data acquisition system using a modern variant of C++. As an integral member of our multidisciplinary team, you will be interacting with scientists and engineers to deliver the next generation data acquisition system for the Swiss Light Source (and other facilities).
Your profile
  • You are an experienced C++ developer producing high-quality code and you follow good practices in software development (version control, CI)
  • You are comfortable with microservice software architecture, TCP/IP networking and messaging queues (for example RabbitMQ or ZeroMQ)
  • You have experience in acquisition and/or analysis of huge datasets at a large research facility, e.g. synchrotron, neutron spallation source or high energy physics accelerator (familiarity with the HDF5 file format is a plus)
  • You follow trends in computing architecture design and you are enthusiastic about cutting-edge hardware technologies
  • You are a team player with strong communication skills and sense of responsibility
  • You hold a bachelor degree in computer science, related technical subject or equivalent practical experience
  • You have very good command of the English language
We offer
Our institution is based on an interdisciplinary, innovative and dynamic collaboration. You will profit from a systematic training on the job, in addition to personal development possibilities and our pronounced vocational training culture. If you wish to optimally combine work and family life or other personal interests, we are able to support you with our modern employment conditions and the on-site infrastructure.

This is a fixed-term position. The employment contract will initially be limited to three years.

For further information, please contact Dr Alun Ashton, email: alun.ashton at

Please submit your application online by 13 June 2021 for the position as a Software Scientist (index no. 9551-01).

Paul Scherrer Institut, Human Resources Management, Sabine Mier, 5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland