The Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) is a member of the Helmholtz Association (HGF) and funded by federal and state government. AWI focuses on polar and marine research in a variety of disciplines such as biology, oceanography, geology, geochemistry and geophysics thus allowing multidisciplinary approaches to scientific goals.

PhD "Cosmic Links between Ocean Sediments
and Ice Cores" (m/f/d)


Chronology is a key-requirement in order to decipher the triggers and consequences of past climate changes. However, different dating methods applied to different climate archives result in large uncertainties inhibiting a precise comparison and obscuring causalities and dynamics in the climate system. In this project, we will use cosmogenic radionuclides (10Be, 14C) to connect marine sediment cores from different locations and ice cores to one common timescale at high precision. This will allow us to infer leads and lags in the Earth system during major re-organizations in the past and improve our understanding of its driver, dynamics and teleconnections.

For this endeavour, we are seeking a highly motivated and skilled team member for a PhD project, who has a keen interest in paleoclimatology and geochemistry.


  • Work on marine sediment cores from various locations to prepare and measure 10Be-samples
  • Investigate geochemical influences on 10Be/9Be in marine sediments
  • Contribute to developing statistical synchronization tools
  • Compile and analyse paleoclimate data from a range of climate archives
  • Infer dynamical relationships between environmental changes in different regions
  • Publish your results in international peer-reviewed journals
  • Present your research at international conferences
  • Be a member of the POLMAR graduate school


  • MSc (or equivalent) in Geosciences or related topics
  • Strong background in geochemistry and/or (paleo-)climatology
  • Strong data analysis-skills (MATLAB/Python/R/…)
  • Solid knowledge of multivariate statistics
  • Fluency in English (written/spoken)
  • Willingness to spend time in partner-labs
  • A strong interest in collaborative research

Additional skills and knowledge

  • Demonstrated relevant laboratory experience (wet-chemistry, spectrometric methods, column chromatography, geochemical analyses, or similar) are a strong asset.
  • Previous experience in scientific publlishing is an advantage.

Further Information

For further information, please contact Dr. Florian Adolphi (; +49(471)4831-1008).

This position is limited to 3 years. The salary will be paid in accordance with the Collective Agreement for the Public Service of the Federation (Tarifvertrag des öffentlichen Dienstes, TVöD Bund), up to salary level 13 (66%). The place of employment will be Bremerhaven.

All doctoral candidates will be members of AWI's postgraduate program POLMAR or another graduate school and thus benefit from a comprehensive training program and extensive support measures.

The AWI is characterised by

  • our scientific success - excellent research
  • collaboration and cooperation - intra-institute, national and international, interdisciplinary
  • opportunities to develop - on the job, aiming at other positions and beyond AWI
  • a culture of reconciling work and family - an audited and well-supported aspect of our operation
  • our outstanding research infrastructure - ships, stations, aircraft, laboratories and more
  • an international environment - everyday contacts with people from all over the world
  • having an influence - fundamental research with social and political relevance
  • flat hierarchies - facilitating freedom and responsibility
  • exciting science topics, with opportunities also in technology, administration and infrastructure

Equal opportunities are an integral part of our personnel policy. The AWI aims to increase the number of female employees and therefore strongly encourages qualified women to apply.

Disabled applicants will be given preference when equal qualifications are present.

The AWI fosters the compatibility of work and family in various ways and has received a number of awards as a result of this engagement.

We look forward to your application!

Please submit your application by July 9th 2021, exclusively online. Please provide in addition to your application a copy of your MSc thesis and contact details of 3 references.

Reference number 21/115/D/Geo-b

posted: 09 June 2021     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.