Scientist - Scalability Programme

1. Position information

Vacancy No.: VN18-41
Grade: A2
Job Ref. No.: STF-PL/18-41
Department: Research
Section: Integrated Forecasting Systems
Reports to: Code Efficiency Team Leader
Closing Date: Extended to 24 January 2019

2. About ECMWF

ECMWF is both a research institute and a 24/7 operational service, producing and disseminating numerical weather predictions to its Member States. This data is fully available to the national meteorological services in the Member States. The Centre also offers a catalogue of forecast data that can be purchased by businesses worldwide and other commercial customers. The supercomputer facility (and associated data archive) at ECMWF is one of the largest of its type in Europe and Member States can use 25% of its capacity for their own purposes.

For details, see www.ecmwf.int/.

ECMWF uses its high-performance computing (HPC) facility to produce a time-critical twice-daily global numerical weather forecast. The operational forecasting system and research & development are currently run on two Cray XC-40 clusters totalling over 250,000 Intel Broadwell compute cores each. Given the expected need for increasing the Earth system model resolution and complexity, enhanced parallelism in work flows and computer code are required, as may be the exploitation of emerging hardware architectures such as low-power multicore CPUs combined with FPGAs

3. Summary of the role

In 2014, ECMWF embarked on a ten-year research programme on HPC Scalability. This programme is funded partly by ECMWF’s Member States and aims to achieve extreme-scale numerical weather prediction capability by 2025. As part of the Scalability Programme1, ECMWF is engaged in partnerships with its Member State organisations, academia, national HPC centres and hardware vendors to prepare for the extreme-scale challenge, in terms of both computing and data handling. The programme explores advanced developments of numerical methods, algorithms, programming models and workflows to substantially enhance efficiency and scalability of the entire forecasting system on future HPC architectures.

These developments are further supported through ECMWF’s partnership in several projects that are externally funded by the European Commission through its Horizon-2020 programme, for example ESCAPE-22, ESiWACE3(-2), EPiGRAM-HS4, EuroEXA5.

We are now looking to recruit a scientist who will work with us on the implementation of novel software developments throughout the Integrated Forecasting System (IFS), aiming to benefit from recent advances on scalable algorithms and data structures by integrating these into the IFS. The work will be located at the interface between computational and applied science, closely working with scientists in the Earth System Model and Earth System Assimilation Sections, and will thus cover computational aspects of both the forecast model and the data assimilation system.

The position sits within the Integrated Forecasting Systems Section at ECMWF and will report to the Code Efficiency Team Leader.

4. Main duties and key responsibilities

S/he will perform scientific and technical research and development in the following areas:

  • Implementation of a generalised approach to representing model fields in assimilation and forecasts, their mapping to observation locations, performing domain-distributed and loadbalanced operations on such fields (based on ECMWF’s Atlas library).
  • Implementation of the coupling and concurrent execution of Earth-system components such as the ocean and sea-ice to enhance parallelism, also exploiting multiple grid capabilities.
  • Continuing the implementation and performance optimization of reduced precision arithmetics.

5. Personal attributes

  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills with a proactive approach, together with an interest in identifying, investigating and solving technical challenges.
  • Enthusiasm about computers and programming, willingness to learn new algorithms and tools.
  • Ability to work in a small team.
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills, particularly listening to and respecting the views of others.

6. Qualifications and experience required

Education

  • A university degree, or equivalent, in a discipline related to computer science, meteorology, physics, mathematics or engineering is required.
  • A PhD in a related subject is desirable but not essential.

Experience

  • Experience in developing parallel codes on high-performance computing facilities. Experience with both shared and distributed memory systems.
  • Familiarity with working on complex codes.
  • Experience with different types of programming models.
  • Experience working in projects and teams governed by tight schedules would be advantageous.

Knowledge and skills (including language)

  • Good knowledge of object-oriented programming and of a high-level programming language such as C++, Fortran. Knowledge of Python would be useful.
  • Ability to work in a Linux-based environment.
  • Good understanding of parallel programming (e.g. MPI and OpenMP).
  • Candidates must be able to work effectively in English and interviews will be conducted in English.
  • A good knowledge of one of the Centre’s other working languages (French or German) would be an advantage.

7. Other information

Grade remuneration

The successful candidate will be recruited at the A2 grade, according to the scales of the Coordinated Organisations and the annual basic salary will be &£59,228.40 NET of tax. This position is assigned to the employment category STF-PL as defined in the Staff Regulations.

Full details of salary scales and allowances are available on the ECMWF website at www.ecmwf.int/en/about/jobs, including the Centre’s Staff Regulations regarding the terms and conditions of employment.

Starting date: As soon as possible

Length of contract: Four years, with the possibility of renewal.

Location: The role will be based in the Reading area, in Berkshire, United Kingdom.

8. How to apply

Please apply by completing the online application form available at www.ecmwf.int/en/about/jobs/.

At ECMWF, we consider an inclusive environment as key for our success. We are dedicated to ensuring a workplace that embraces diversity and provides equal opportunities for all, without distinction as to race, gender, age, marital status, social status, disability, sexual orientation, religion, personality, ethnicity and culture. We value the benefits derived from a diverse workforce and are committed to having staff that reflect the diversity of the countries that are part of our community, in an environment that nurtures equality and inclusion.

Staff are usually recruited from among nationals of the following Member States and Co-operating States:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Hungary, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

Staff from other countries may be considered in exceptional cases

published: 28 December 2018     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.