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Open-Rank Planetary Science Professor

Arizona State University, School of Earth and Space Exploration
Tempe, Arizona (US)
Competitive salary commensurate with rank and experience
Closing date
Oct 8, 2023

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Earth and Space Science Informatics, Interdisciplinary/Other, Planetary Sciences, Space Physics
Career Level
Education Level
Job Type
Relocation Cost
No Relocation
Sector Type

Job Details

The School of Earth and Space Exploration (SESE) at Arizona State University (ASU) invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track faculty appointment in Planetary Science. This is an open-rank search for an Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, or Professor in any area of Planetary Science. We seek an innovative scholar who is an emerging or established leader in the future of planetary exploration, and who is dedicated to the ideals of the ASU Charter. We are especially interested in applicants who can complement or extend SESE’s existing strengths in Earth and space science research and education. The anticipated start date is August 2024.

About the School of Earth and Space Exploration

SESE is a vibrant and diverse community that combines the strengths of science, engineering, and education to set the stage for a new era of exploration. Research in SESE includes, but is not limited to, the geology, geophysics, and geochemistry of Earth and other planetary bodies, exploration systems design and instrumentation, exoplanets, astrobiology, astronomy, astrophysics, cosmology, and Earth and space science education. A central part of SESE’s mission is to develop and deploy new technologies that enable scientific exploration, building on half a century of ASU faculty, staff, and student participation and leadership in Solar System exploration. SESE maintains world-class shared facilities and expertise to support the development and operation of space missions. Current SESE participation includes leadership of the NASA Psyche asteroid mission, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC), thermal emission spectrometers on the Mars Odyssey, OSIRIS-REx, Lucy, and upcoming Europa Clipper missions, multiple SmallSats, and the Mastcam and Mastcam-Z imaging investigations on the Curiosity rover and Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, respectively. See for more information.

About Arizona State University

ASU exemplifies a new prototype for the American public research university. As articulated in the ASU Charter, ASU is a comprehensive public research university, measured not by whom it excludes, but by whom it includes and how they succeed; advancing research and discovery of public value; and assuming fundamental responsibility for the economic, social, cultural and overall health of the communities it serves.

ASU is dedicated to the proposition that excellence and access are not mutually exclusive. ASU ranks sixth in the U.S. for research expenditures among universities without a medical school. Simultaneously, ASU is one of the nation’s largest public universities, enrolling nearly 150,000 students from diverse socioeconomic, geographic, and demographic backgrounds, across campus and digital immersion programs. ASU has demonstrated that quality higher education can (and should) be made available to every student capable of performing university-level work while increasing, not sacrificing, excellence.

Read more about ASU at about and

Essential Duties

The successful candidate will be expected to establish or extend a vibrant externally funded research program aligned with NASA planetary exploration missions, engage undergraduate and graduate students through effective teaching and mentoring, participate in service to the University and the profession, and build productive relationships with faculty both within and beyond SESE. 

Minimum Qualifications:

The successful candidate will…

  • Hold a PhD in Planetary Science or a related field in the natural sciences or engineering by the time of appointment;
  • Demonstrate strong evidence of, or potential for, excellence in Planetary Science research;
  • Demonstrate strong evidence of, or potential for, excellence in teaching and mentoring in Planetary Science;
  • Demonstrate a commitment to working with diverse faculty, staff, students, and communities to advance the ASU Charter.

Desired Qualifications:

We are especially interested in candidates who, commensurate with rank, demonstrate…

  • A record of accomplishment in Planetary Science research, such as a relevant peer-reviewed publication track record;
  • The potential to establish a vigorous, externally funded research program in Planetary Science, aligned with NASA missions;
  • Prior experience with planetary science missions and/or instrumentation;
  • Evidence of emerging or established leadership in the planetary exploration community;
  • A commitment to evidence-based practices and innovation in teaching and mentoring at the undergraduate and graduate levels;
  • A commitment to fostering a culture of collegiality and transparency with colleagues, students, and mentees.

Application Instructions

To apply, please submit electronically the following materials to

  1. a cover letter that includes contact information (including email addresses and phone numbers) for three references who may be contacted at a later stage of consideration.
  2. a comprehensive curriculum vitae that includes a complete publication record.
  3. a research statement describing previous work, interests, and anticipated future plans (not to exceed three pages, plus references and figures).
  4. a teaching statement describing experience, interests, and philosophy (not to exceed two pages)

Initial deadline for receipt of complete applications is Oct. 20; Applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis for a reserve pool.  Applications in the reserve pool may then be reviewed in the order in which they were received until the position is closed.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

A background check is required for employment. Arizona State University is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor and an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other basis protected by law.

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In compliance with federal law, ASU prepares an annual report on campus security and fire safety programs and resources.  ASU’s Annual Security and Fire Safety Report is available online at  You may request a hard copy of the report by contacting the ASU Police Department at 480-965-3456.


ASU is a large, comprehensive, research university and for nearly two decades, has transformed into the “New American University,” one dedicated to the simultaneous pursuit of excellence, broad access to quality education, and meaningful societal impact. By our Charter and Design Aspirations, we center inclusion and success as values that drive the enterprise; adopt inter- and transdisciplinary approaches to teaching and learning as ways to address society’s greatest challenges; and develop innovative partnerships to produce master learners across the lifespan. To learn more about ASU, visit

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