Early-Stage Researcher (ESR)/PhD position as part of the MSCA ETN '4D-REEF'


(3 years)

Seasonally-resolved palaeoenvironmental time-series from microsampled molluscs, foraminifera, or corals

Host: Palaeoenvironmental Research Group, Institute of Geosciences, Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Supervisors: Prof. Wolfgang Müller, Dr David Evans

Seasonally-resolved records of past climate states provide an important means of assessing climate models. They also allow an evaluation of any seasonal bias in non-seasonally resolved climatic parameters.This is important as secular changes in the amplitude of seasonality are a driver of environmental and climatological change under different greenhouse gas regimes. However, past seasonality is poorly constrained, to be addressed here as advances in analytical techniques allow (sub-)seasonal to daily time resolution in a variety of proxy archives.

Objectives of the individual project

  1. Fieldwork and sampling of long-lived molluscs (e.g. Tridacna), large benthic foraminifera or corals in Pliocene and Holocene strata; sample characterization including diagenetic overprint
  2. Acquisition of decade-long, continuous time series of temperature, salinity, upwelling etc. at seasonal or even daily resolution, utilizing geochemical proxies from spatially-resolved analysis such as laser-ablation mass spectrometry (LA-ICPMS) or micromilling, including clumped-isotope (?47) analysis. This will provide constraints on the secular temperature evolution of the Pacific Warm Pool (PWP), and how that is related to seasonality.
  3. Evaluation and application of recently-developed proxies such as Mg/Ca or Sr/Ca in Tridacna (Warter, Müller et al. 2018) as indicators of light intensity, crucial in turbid reef settings.

Expected results

The datasets produced in this project will provide a better quantitative understanding of past tropical seasonality, including the possible reconstruction of past turbidity. This project will also provide input for climate modelling (ESR15) and facilitate comparison between seasonally-resolved palaeoenvironmental parameters and Earth System models.

More information about 4D-REEF is available at: https://www.naturalis.nl/en/4d-reef

Secondments: University of Bristol (U.K.)

Field training: Cebu (Philippines), Southwest Sulawesi (Indonesia)

Eligibility criteria

EU eligibility criteria for candidates: Candidates of any nationality, but in order to be eligible for the positions the following criteria applies to all applicants: 1) The applicant shall at the time of recruitment be in the first four years of his/her research career and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. 2) The applicant must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity in the country of the host institute for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the recruitment.

Candidate profile

Candidates must hold a master degree in Earth and/or Environmental sciences. We are looking for a highly motivated student with good communication skills. A keen interest in fieldwork in remote areas is necessary. Experience with geochemical techniques such as stable isotopes or laser-ablation mass spectrometry and data processing is desired. Training in techniques will be provided.

Secondments: University of Bristol (U.K.)

Field training: Cebu (Philippines), Southwest Sulawesi (Indonesia)

For any queries you may have, please contact:

For scientific questions: Prof. Wolfgang Müller w.muller@em.uni-frankfurt.de

For administrative matters: Ms Svenja Lubs lubs@em.uni-frankfurt.de

How to apply?

Applications should be sent as a single pdf-file by email to lubs@em.uni-frankfurt.de; informal inquiries about the position can be directed to w.muller@em.uni-frankfurt.de. Documents cannot be returned. Deadline 1 October 2019.

Your application should contain

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter of motivation & research interests
  • Names and contact details of up to three people who can provide references upon request
  • Summary of relevant experience (1 page)
  • Course transcripts and copy of submitted thesis - upon request only

4D-REEF has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research
and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement
No 813360

posted: 30 August 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.