PhD student (m/f/d) Improvement of ocean circulation models using innovative underwater observations

code no. 2019/KS 5
The place of employment is Geesthacht, Germany.

The Institute of Coastal Research at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht hosts a number of highly motivated and experienced researchers in the broad field of coastal research. Our research focus lies on numerical modelling of the coastal ocean with specific expertise in the coupling of different oceanic and atmospheric processes. At the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht we develop numerical models with the aim to determine the past and current state of the environment and to identify the major drivers for future changes in the system. The position is initially limited for three years (starting as soon as possible).

Ocean water currents are an important factor in the Earth system and a challenge to model and predict. Accurate modelling of large-scale ocean currents lead to more accurate weather forecasts, and to a better understanding of climate change phenomena. In the framework of the project "OceanCurrents", numerical models will be combined with innovative measurement concepts based on novel underwater drifting devices. The work will be carried out in close cooperation with partners from Israel (University of Haifa and University of Tel Aviv) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The focus of the work at HZG will be on the numerical modelling of the ocean circulation and of approaches to use the new observation technology for forecast improvements and model parameter estimation. Furthermore, model information will be used to optimise the configuration of the observation system. The new integrated system could be used in case of emergency situation, e.g., for oil spills in which the accurate prediction of ocean currents is very important to take appropriate actions. For an efficient synchronisation of the work, the cooperation will include several exchange visits to Israel.

Job requirements:

  • Master's degree in oceanography, atmospheric sciences, environmental sciences, physics, mathematics, or related disciplines
  • knowledge in scientific programming with FORTRAN and related analysing programming languages (e.g. MATLAB, R or Python) would be an advantage
  • knowledge of English (written and oral); good communication skills and interest to work in an interdisciplinary environment

We offer:

  • multinational work environment with over 950 colleagues from more than 50 nations
  • extensive options of vocational training (i. a. expert seminars, language courses or leadership seminars)
  • flexible working hours and various models to ensure the compatibility of family and career
  • excellent infrastructure, including a scientific in-house library as well as modern work spaces
  • remuneration according to the standards of the collective wage agreement TV-AVH including further social benefits