Professional Support (f/m/d) Parallel and Portable CMS Reconstruction Algorithms with Alpaka

Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR)
Görlitz (Stadt), Sachsen (DE)
March 30 2021
Position Type
Organization Type

As a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers, the HZDR employs about 1,400 people. The Center's focus is on interdisciplinary research in the areas energy, health and matter.

Do you have a computing engineer or applied physicist background with passion for heterogeneous computing? Join us and contribute to the development of high-performance event reconstruction algorithms. Take part!

The Center for Advanced Systems Understanding (CASUS) is a German-Polish research center for data-intensive digital systems research. We combine innovative methods from mathematics, theoretical systems research, simulations, data science, artificial intelligence, and computer science to provide solutions for a range of disciplines – materials science under ambient and extreme conditions, earth system research, systems biology and medicine, and autonomous vehicles.

CASUS was jointly founded in August 2019 by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR), the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics (MPI-CBG), the Technical University of Dresden (TUD) and the University of Wroclaw (UWr). CASUS is located in the heart of Görlitz at the border between Germany and Poland. The CASUS start-up phase is hosted by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf and is financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Saxon State Ministry for Higher Education, Research and the Arts (SMWK).

The Patatrack team at CERN has a leading role in the exploration of innovative software and hardware technologies to bring smart software closer to the detectors read-out at CERN experiments.

The Patatrack team has been laying the foundations for the heterogeneous physics reconstruction in CMS since 2016. The challenges of the reconstruction algorithms used by CMS are twofold: they have to achieve a high level of efficiency and accuracy, while meeting the throughput and memory requirements of the experiment's online and offline computing infrastructure. To reach these goals the Patatrack team has been exploring parallel algorithms and heterogeneous reconstruction techniques, and exploiting new architectures such as GPUs and FPGAs. After an initial prototyping, the introduction of a fully heterogeneous reconstruction in the CMS software will leverage portability frameworks.

ALPAKA (Abstraction Library for Parallel Kernel Acceleration) is a header-only C++14 abstraction library for accelerator development. It allows performance portability across different accelerator architectures, providing abstraction for the parallelism and for data management. This will lead to more maintainable software that can be built from a single source and run on different architectures, reducing the maintenance cost and avoiding the need of several implementations of the same algorithm.

Alpaka and associated libraries are part of the Helmholtz Research Field Matter strategic program oriented funding and specifically dedicated to support data management and analysis in the areas of particle physics, astro particle physics and science with photons, neutrons and ions.

The position is available immediately; applications are considered until the position is filled. The appointments are initially for one year and renewable annually, subject to mutual satisfaction and to continued CASUS funding.

Extended stay at CERN or frequent travel to CERN will be necessary.

Detailed information can be found here:


The place of work is Görlitz. The working time amounts to 39 h/week.


You will play an important role in the development of the heterogeneous algorithms applied to HEP event reconstruction, by designing and developing innovative, fast and portable algorithms for data processing.

You will develop the testing software and quality assurance procedures related to data reconstruction.


  • Master's degree or PhD or equivalent relevant experience in the field of computing or physics or a related field
  • Experience in C++ programming (C++11,14,17)
  • Experience with event reconstruction in HEP
  • Experience in implementing and optimizing algorithms on GPUs through CUDA, OpenCL or through abstraction layers (Alpaka, SYCL, Kokkos, etc)
  • Knowledge and application of software life-cycle tools and procedures: git, JIRA
  • Development of application software: object-oriented design and development, parallel programming, algorithm development and optimisation


  • A vibrant research community in an open, diverse, and international work environment
  • Scientific excellence, broad national and international science networks
  • Salary and social benefits in conformity with the provisions of the Collective Agreement TVöD-Bund
  • 30 Vacation Days per year
  • Company pension scheme (VBL)
  • A good work/life balance for which we offer assistance in the form of:
    • possibility to work part-time
    • flexible working hours
    • in-house health management

Kindly submit your completed application (including cover letter, CV, diplomas/​transcripts, etc.) only via our online application system.

The HZDR is committed to equal opportunity employment and we strongly encourage applications from qualified female candidates. We also carefully consider all applications from job candidates with severe disabilities.

Bautzner Landstraße 400
01328 Dresden

For any questions, do not hesitate to ask:
Dr. Michael Bussmann
Tel.: +49 3581 37523-11,
+49 351 260-2616

Mrs. Inken Köhler
Tel.: +49 3581 37523-10

Mrs. Weronika Mazur
Tel.: +49 3581 37523-23,
+49 171 3635554


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