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Professional Research Assistant

University of Colorado Boulder
Colorado, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Jun 29, 2022

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Science, Technology & Mathematics, Computer Sciences & Technology, Physics & Space Sciences, Administrative, Business & Administrative Affairs, Computer Services & Information Technology
Employment Type
Full Time
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Job Summary

The Professional Research Experience Program (PREP) encourages applications for a Professional Research Assistant!

Leveraging existing neuromorphic hardware to accelerate optimization of future systems.

To complement its emerging hardware research, development, and metrology, NIST PML’s Hardware for Artificial Intelligence (AI) Program has a high-priority need for a dedicated researcher focusing effort on benchmarking and metrics to accelerate progress and impact in brain-inspired computing. The Applied Physics Division of the Physical Measurement Laboratory seeks a researcher with experience designing and implementing algorithms on state-of-the-art spiking neuromorphic chips to focus on this effort and complement the stronger research areas of the PML Hardware for AI program. This part will amplify an existing collaboration with Los Alamos National Lab (LANL). Success measures are:
  • Establishment of a system of metrics for each element of the neuromorphic computing stack: synapses, dendrites, neurons, networks, input interfaces, and output channels.
  • The system of metrics enables quantitative comparison of any neuromorphic hardware system.
  • Selection and/or design of several test problems that can be used for benchmarking specific, diverse neuromorphic instantiations.
  • The suite of benchmarks is employed in conjunction with the system of metrics so that correlations between hardware metrics and performance on application benchmarks can be identified across numerous classes of algorithms.
  • Implementation of benchmarks on existing neuromorphic hardware (e.g. Intel’s Loihi chip) and in simulating emerging neuromorphic hardware to accelerate its prioritization, design, development and performance improvement. Emerging hardware includes systems being developed and characterized within NIST PML employing photonics, superconducting electronics, memristors, and magnetic tunnel junctions.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

PREP is a special partnership between the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado Boulder. PREP provides research opportunities to CU undergraduate and graduate students, as well as researchers with a Bachelor's, Master's, or PhD in NIST labs to gain research experience alongside NIST scientists.

The particular group that needs a researcher is the Quantum Nanophotonics Group under the Applied Physics Division at NIST.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be
  • Establishing a system of metrics and benchmarks for neuromorphic hardware.
  • Programming and interfacing with neuromorphic hardware.
  • Coding and running simulations of spiking neural networks.
What You Should Know

All University of Colorado Boulder employees are required to comply with the campus COVID-19 vaccine requirement . New employees must provide proof of vaccination or receive a medical or religious exemption within 30 days of employment.

What We Can Offer

The salary range for this position is $58,000 - $72,000 annually.

Onboarding/relocation assistance may be available, however, if within a 12-month period you exercise your right to willfully terminate your employment with the University of Colorado, you hereby agree to reimburse the department for your relocation expense.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits , including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder .

Be Statements
Be ambitious. Be dynamic. Be Boulder.

What We Require

A Master’s Degree or higher in computer science, electrical engineering, physics, or a related field.

What We Would Like You To Have
  • PhD in computer science, electrical engineering, physics, or related field.
  • Experience with neuromorphic algorithms and programming for spiking neural networks is ideal.
  • Skills with neural simulation software, such as Brian or Nengo, are a major advantage.
  • Basic programming skills with languages such as C++ and Python are required.
  • Knowledge of neuromorphic hardware is also an asset.
Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Optional: Transcripts/Proof of Degree

If you are selected as the finalist, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources Department using an approved online vendor. However, if your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version (if applicable) as an optional attachment.

During the application process you will need to enter contact information for a reference. We will request the letter of recommendation immediately following your application.

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Lisa Valencia

Posting Contact Email:

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