Position Summary

Software Engineer at Green Bank Observatory

The Green Bank Observatory is looking for a Software Engineer to support Scientists who accomplish a variety of tasks, including tracking spacecraft landing on Mars, observing near-earth objects such as asteroids and meteors, and searching for extraterrestrial life.

The Green Bank Observatory is a National Science Foundation Observatory located in Green Bank, WV. Green Bank Observatory enables leading edge research by offering telescope, facility, and advanced instrumentation access to the radio astronomy and basic research communities. With radio astronomy as its foundation, the Green Bank Observatory is a world leader in advancing research, innovation, and education. American radio astronomy trailblazers called Green Bank Observatory home over 60 years ago. Today their legacy is alive and well. Nestled in the mountain ranges and farmland of West Virginia, within the National Quiet Zone, radio astronomers are listening to the remote whispers of the universe to discover answers to humanity’s most astounding astronomical questions. 

Specifically, the Green Bank Observatory: provides state-of-the-art telescopes, instrumentation, and expertise; trains the next generation of scientists, engineers, and technicians; promotes science, technology, and engineering to foster a more scientifically literate society; and provides the tools and facilities to advance science and technology nationally and internationally.

The Green Bank Observatory is looking for a Software Engineer to support Scientists who:

  • Track spacecraft landing on Mars
  • Observe near-earth objects such as asteroids and meteors
  • Search for extraterrestrial life with the Breakthrough Listen SETI project
  • Search for Fast Radio Bursts
  • Detect pulsars and research gravitational waves
  • Maintain the software and instrumentation on Green Bank’s radio telescopes

As a Software Engineer at the Green Bank Observatory a typical day might include the following:

  • Writing Python GUI (Graphical User Interface) applications for astronomers to use for observation activities with the GBT.
  • Writing C++ code that integrates new devices in GBT’s monitor and control system
  • Implementing algorithms that update the GBT Dynamic Scheduling System
  • Using open source software (e.g. Dask) to improve the performance of the data reduction software
  • Helping observers create a new data processing workflow built around high performance computing
  • Attending science and technology educational opportunities (e.g. talks, conferences, webinars) 
  • Working and collaborating with education and public outreach initiatives such as math field day, robotics teams, and coding camps


  • You have a desire to challenge yourself in the fields of science, engineering, software development, and education
  • You enjoy working in a team environment
  • You enjoy a research environment consisting of desk and lab work
  • You are able to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing
  • You want to collaborate on projects in your community. 
  • You want to be involved with cutting-edge research, innovation, and education to move the radio astronomy field forward
  • You want to work in an academic setting within a rural community with access to outdoor activities such as mountain biking, hiking, camping, fishing and skiing
  • You want to live in a community 30 minutes away from Snowshoe Mountain Resort and minutes away from beautiful Monongahela National Forest and Allegheny Trail
  • You have a Bachelor’s or Associate’s degree in computing, software development, mathematics or related field


Support the software programs that power the Green Bank Telescope and other telescopes on the property using:

  • Agile (Scrum) and Waterfall methodologies
  • C++ and Python software development on Linux
  • Revision control (git)
  • Testing (unit/integration/regression) and Continuous Integration
  • The Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Monitor/Control System

Job Requirements: Bachelor’s or Associate’s degree in computing, software development, mathematics or related field required.

Location: National Science Foundation facility in Green Bank, West Virginia. Temporary housing is available at a student rate.

Salary Range: The compensation for this position is $35,000. In addition, the Green Bank Observatory provides great benefits including: paid time off, sick time, medical, dental and vision benefits. 

Green Bank Observatory is a facility of the National Science Foundation and is operated by Associated Universities, Inc. 

Equal Opportunity Employer

Associated Universities, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. Women, Minorities, Vietnam-Era Veterans, Disabled Veterans, Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities are encouraged to apply. To view our complete statement, please visit  If you require reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process due to a disability, you may submit your request by reaching out at to be connected with Green Bank Observatory’s hiring team.