SARAO Scholarship and Postdoctoral Fellowship Programmes 2021

SARAO Scholarship and Postdoctoral Fellowship Programmes 2021

The South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO), with the National Research Foundation, is offering a number of Scholarship and Postdoctoral Programmes and is calling on suitable candidates to submit an application to qualify for a grant applicable on 2021. Currently, these are the scholarship and postdoctoral fellowship grants that are open:

SARAO Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme

This postdoctoral fellowship is open for 5 candidates in the field of observational research utilizing South African radio astronomy instruments such as:

  • MeerKAT (highest priority)
  • C-BASS
  • HERA
  • HIRAX (early versions)
  • HartRAO (including geodesy and astrometry applications)

The SARAO Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme covers a three-year period. Five postdoctoral fellowship grants are open and yearly renewal is required which will go through SARAO for approval. This means renewal of the grant will greatly depend on performance as determined by annual progress reports which indicate deliverables progress according to the original research proposal.

This year’s SARAO postdoctoral fellowship amounts to ZAR 410,000 per year and is supplemented by equipment and travel grants.

SARAO Doctoral Scholarship

The SARAO Doctoral Scholarship is awarded to students who hold a Masters degree or currently pursuing one within SARAO’s technical focus areas. Scholarships are awarded and renewed on a per-year basis for duration of three years.

The value of this doctoral scholarship amounts to a maximum of R163,000. Beneficiaries also have access to a R36 000 per year travel grant plus a R40 000 equipment grant for the three-year duration of the scholarship. Other benefits include

  • Home travel grant
  • Emergency medical insurance
  • Repatriation fee
  • International student fee

SARAO Masters Scholarship Programme

Open to applicants who are currently pursuing a Masters qualification or have recently completed their Masters degree qualification. Applicants must also be pursuing a SARAO-approved research project. Click here to access a list of approved SARAO research projects.

The amount of the scholarship is R142,000 per year with a travel grant for R92 000 and an equipment grant valued at R29 000. All grants are renewable each year except the equipment grant which given only once.

SARAO Honours Scholarhip Pragramme

The SARAO Honours Scholarship grant covers one year of study-related expenses in the following fields of study:

  • BSc Honours in Astronomy, Astrophysics, Physics and Electronics and Computer Science
  • BSc Honours at the National Astrophysics and Space Science Programme

The bursary amount is R146,000 per year of coverage and may be subject to adjustment due to changes in inflation and university fees.

SARAO Undergraduate Scholarships 

SARAO’s undergraduate scholarships are given to academically performing students currently taking up or intending to take up any of the qualifications below:

  • Bachelor of Electronic/Electrical Engineering
  • Bachelor of Mechatronic/Mechanical Engineering
  • Bachelor of Computer Engineering
  • BSc in Applied Mathematic and Physics/Mathematics
  • BSc in Physics and Elelctronics
  • BSc in Astrophysics and Astronomy/Astronomy
  • Bachelor of Computer Science co-major in Applied Math or Mathematics

Access to scholarship benefits vary depending on the year of study:

  • One year coverage for fourth-year engineering students
  • Two-year coverage for students in the third year of studies
  • Three years coverage for second-year students
  • Four years coverage for students in their first year

The value of the scholarship coverage is R148,000 per year. New undergraduates will be required to go to an induction workshop.

SARAO Diploma in Engineering Technology Scholarship 

SARAO is awarding scholarship grants to top-performing students who are currently pursuing or intending to pursue any of the diploma qualifications below:

  • Diploma in Engineering Technology with focus on Mechanical
  • Diploma in Engineering Technology with focus on Electronics

The scholarship amount is R117,500 and will cover study-related fees in the following time frames:

  • One year coverage  for students in third year
  • Two years coverage for second-year students
  • Three years scholarship coverage for first-year coverage

About SARAO

As a National Research Foundation facility, the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory oversees all South African radio astronomy facilities and initiatives including the Karoo MeerKAT Radio Telescope and the VLBI and Geodesy projects at HartRAO. In addition, SARAO manages the African Very Long Baseline Interferometry Network for the SKA partners in Africa. SARAO is also responsible for South Africa’s engineering and planning work on the Square Kilometre Array Radio Telescope.

SARAO manages such programmes in order to establish capacity in engineering research and radio astronomy science notwithstanding the technical capacity needed to sustain site operations.

Requirements and Eligibility

SARAO Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme

  • Must have been doing active research since completing their Doctoral degree. In cases where there is a break in research, candidates must have completed their Doctoral course not earlier than 30 September 2016
  • Available to start the postdoctoral fellowship on or before 1 October 2021 in South Africa
  • Postdoctoral application must be focused on observational research using radio astronomy instruments mentioned earlier
  • Must be able to secure an endorsement from host/supervisor of the South African university where the fellowship will take place
  • Does not hold any other salaried, full-time employment for the duration of the fellowship

SARAO Doctoral Scholarship

  • Must be a citizen of South Africa as well as citizens from Ghana, Botswana. Madagascar, Kenya, Mauritius, Namibia, Zambia and Mozambique
  • Completing or in the process of completing a Masters degree related to the technical or scientific focus
  • Will be taking on a research project recognized by SARAO
  • Must have acquired a letter of agreement from the supervisor stating consent

SARAO Masters Scholarship Programme

  • Must be a citizen of South Africa as well as citizens from Ghana, Botswana. Madagascar, Kenya, Mauritius, Namibia, Zambia and Mozambique
  • Top performing students completing or have completed an honours or undergraduate degree relevant to the technical or scientific focus of SARAO
  • Must have chosen a research project approved by SARAO
  • Acquired a supervisors written consent to supervise the student on the research project

SARAO Honours Scholarship Programme

  • A South African citizen and permanent resident with an undergraduate average of at least 65%
  • Intending to study any of the fields of study mentioned earlier

SARAO Undergraduate Scholarships

  • A South African citizen and permanent resident with an undergraduate average of at least 70% in Physical Science and Mathematics if Grade 12 or
  • At least a GPA  of 60% at the undergraduate level
  • Currently pursuing or intending to pursue any of the prescribed fields of study

SARAO Diploma in Engineering Technology Scholarship

  • A South African citizen or holds a permanent residency status
  • Currently pursuing or intending to pursue any of the prescribed fields of study
  • Obtained at least a 60% average in Grade 12 Physical Science and Mathematics or 60% minimum in Diploma in Engineering Tech subjects

How to Apply and Application Details

Qualified candidates who wish to move forward with the application will need to register an account on the NRF recruitment portal in order to submit an application. Click here to get started.

SARAO Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme

Feedback will be sent to successful candidates by 15 December 2020. Consider your application as unsuccessful if no feedback is received by then.

SARAO Doctoral Scholarship
SARAO Masters Scholarship Programme

Successful candidates will receive feedback by 30 November 2020.

SARAO Honours Scholarship Programme
SARAO Undergraduate Scholarships

Successful candidates will receive feedback by 20 November 2020

Closing Date

Inquiry with the university about the deadline for submission of applications.

For SARAO Diploma in Engineering Technology Scholarship applicants, the deadline for submission of applications is on 14 August 2020.

Contact Details

SARAO Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme
SARAO Doctoral Scholarship
SARAO Masters Scholarship Programme

Dr. Mthuthuzeli Zamxaka
Tel.no: +27 11 442 2434
Email: mzamxaka@ska.ac.za

SARAO Honours Scholarship Programme
SARAO Undergraduate Scholarships
SARAO Diploma in Engineering Technology Scholarship

Ms Annah Mashemola
Email: amashemola@ska.ac.za
Telephone: +27 11 442 2434

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