Paid Electrical Engineering internship in an Observatory in Antofagasta

  • Electrical Engineering
  • Antofagasta, Chile
  • April 8, 2024 10:41
  • Internship

Job Description

  • Date Posted:

    Apr 08, 2024
  • Expiration date:

    Apr 30, 2025
  • Location:

    Antofagasta, Chile
  • Salary:

    0€ - 500€

Job Description

Our collaborator is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world's most productive ground-based astronomical observatory. They are carrying out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries.

For their Maintenance, Support and Engineering (MSE), they are looking for students to participate in the Winter Internship programme 2024. 

The MSE Department provides technical support to the four VLT 8-m telescopes, to the VLT Interferometer with its auxiliary telescopes and to all instruments available for scientific observations. The telescopes and instruments are complex systems that involve many advanced technologies and require a high level of engineering support. 


"Supporting the Astronomical Instrumentation at the Observatory”

The Very Large Telescope (VLT) is one of the world's most advanced optical telescopes, consisting of four Unit Telescopes with main mirrors of 8.2m diameter and four movable 1.8m diameter Auxiliary Telescopes. These telescopes cater a total of 15 instruments, all of them targeting cutting edge science cases.

  • Keeping the instruments running at their best performance is a critical task.
  • The student shall be integrated in instrumentation team and shall contribute to diverse developments impacting the operational performance of several instruments.
  • Improving the calibration process by developing a system that allows the extension of the lifetime of calibration lamps and the acceleration of the necessary flux adjustments.
  • Adding a new control that improves the thermal stability of the KMOS instrument (K-band Multi Object Spectrograph) - one of the VLT workhorse instruments. This is an opportunity to learn and contribute to the operations of astronomical instrumentation in a unique environment.
  • Developing skills in the field of electronics, remote control/data acquisition, data analysis and cryogenics.
  • Improving the operational performance of critical astronomical instruments at the observatory.  


  • Engineering profile with electronics and Software.
  • Experience with Raspberry Pi, Linux.
  • Data gathering and analysis, modelling and simulation.
  • Availability for six (6) months, start anytime between June and September 2024.
  • Candidates from European and Chilean universities in their final year. 
  • Intermediate level English.
  • Training agreement from your university. 
  • Strong core values of respect, integrity, accountability and commitment.
  • Candidates who work well in a team with open communication. 


  • The MSE Department has a total workforce of 80 engineers and technicians distributed in 6 engineering groups, you will get the chance to work with experts in the field.
  • This is a paid internship and a special allowance of USD 500 aprox/ month during the period you are performing your apprenticeship.
  • Paid transportation arrangements (plane tickets). Also transportation to and from Santiago will be provided.
  • Accommodation provided on site.

Availabilty and hours:The schedule will be 8 days on-site, 10 hours. day followed by 6 days off-duty (8x6). 

Location: 120 km south of the city of Antofagasta, Chile.