The Helmholtz Centre Potsdam - GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences is the national research centre for Earth sciences in Germany. With approximately 1.280 employees (including visiting scientists), the GFZ is conducting interdisciplinary research on the "System Earth" and the influence of humans on the planet. As a member of the Helmholtz Association, it is part of Germany's largest science organization.

For Section 4.8 "Geoenergy" we invite applications for a

PostDoc (m/f/x) Aquifer Thermal Energy Storage Job Vacancy No. 3672

Helmholtz-Initiative Climate Adaptation and Mitigation (HI-CAM)

The Helmholtz-Initiative Climate Adaptation and Mitigation (HI-CAM) will promote inter- and transdisciplinary research and support young scientists in the development of their careers in this societally important research area. The mitigation part of the initiative aims to evaluate and pave the way for possible routes to reach the Net-Zero goal until mid-century and intends to provide scientifically based information on the potential of available key technologies under different scenarios and against the background of the specific economical and societal feasibility.

Contact: Prof. Dr. David Bruhn

The current position is focused on the potential and integration of aquifer thermal energy storage (ATES) solutions to mitigate climate change effects in urban areas:

Your responsibilities:

  • quantification of the ATES potential in Germany, with a focus on major cities and urban areas
  • investigation of the potential for high temperature ATES systems in Germany
  • interaction with ongoing ATES projects at GFZ and cooperating Helmholtz centres (KIT, HZDR) to define technical bottlenecks in the integration of ATES systems in the energy supply systems
  • development of scenarios for optimised integration of ATES systems in urban energy supply systems based on examples
  • preparing an interface for contributing to emission reduction and energy assessment models of the project partners
  • presentation of results at national and international conferences and publication in peer-reviewed journals

Your qualifications:

  • Master's degree (or equivalent) and preferably PhD in Geosciences or Process Engineering, with a strong affinity to numerical modelling
  • working experience with background in either geological underground processes, ideally ATES systems or district heating/cooling and heat supply systems
  • detailed knowledge of the German energy supply system and structures
  • practical experience in the techno-economic evaluation of energy supply systems
  • excellent communication skills, ability to work in an interdisciplinary team
Starting date: as soon as possible
Fixed term: 2 years
Working hours: full-time (currently 39 h/week); The position is, in principle, suitable for part-time employment.
Salary: This position has been assessed as being salary group 13 according to "TVöD Bund (Tarifgebiet Ost)". The salary group will be determined by the conditions of the collective wage agreement and the appropriate personal qualifications.
Location: Potsdam

You can expect a very diverse and challenging job in an international work environment that is characterized by exciting research projects. The compatibility of work and family life is of particular concern to the GFZ. Therefore, it offers the opportunity for flexible working time and workplaces. Moreover, there is a kindergarten located on the research campus.

The GFZ is a partner with Geo.X (, and as such it is well connected with other geoscience institutions in Potsdam and Berlin. Geo.X forms the largest regional cluster of geoscientific expertise in Europe and offers excellent opportunities for cooperation and development.

Please submit your application by 20th December 2019 using the "Apply" button.

If you have any questions regarding this job offer, please feel free to call Ms Buge at +49 0331 288-28878.

Equal opportunity is an inherent part of our personnel policy. Therefore we are particularly welcoming applications from qualified women. Severely disabled persons will be given preferential treatment in the case of equal qualification.

We will retain your application documents for at least three months, even if the application is not successful.

published: 19 November 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.