Phd position in physical oceanography

DisEntangling Quasi-geostrophic motions and INternal waves in high resolution
satellite observations of the Ocean

The incoming years will see an unprecedented wealth in altimetric data (up to 6 satellite flying at one time) and the emergence of a new instrument (SWOT) that will revolutionize our ability to map ocean sea level and currents at fine scales (< 100km). The SWOT technological breakthrough is however jeopardized by a novel issue, identified as priority to be addressed by the mission science team, which results from the superimpositions of two different signals: slow Mesoscale eddies and SubMesoscale front and filaments (M/SM) on one hand and fast Internal Gravity Waves (IGW) on the other hand.

The central issue addressed by the thesis project is that of our ability to distinguish the signature M/SM and IGW in oceanographic data (satellite, in situ). Answering this question will require to quantify the predictive ability of dynamical models governing evolution of these processes, to identify the nature and impact of interactions between M/SM and OI on their respective evolutions, and, to explore new data synergies. Idealized and realistic numerical modelling as well as theoretical approaches will be employed in order to address these issues.

This PhD project is part of the ANR (French Research Agency) funded EQUINOx project. The researcher will also be involved in the development of the SWOT mission and will be part of the LOPS laboratory (Brest-France, and work in close collaboration with Aurelien Ponte and other members of the EQUINOx project. The position will start in september 2018 and will last 36 months.


Master in physical oceanography or dynamical atmospheric sciences. Interest for geophysical fluid dynamics, numerical modelling and inverse problems. Programming skills (Python, Fortran in particular). Strong motivation and ability to work in teams.

How to apply:

register directly at

Tab: SDU / UMR 6523 Laboratoire d'Océanographie Physique et Spatiale - BREST / 12

Title: DisEntangling Quasi-geostrophic motions and INternal waves in high resolution satellite observations of the Ocean / Séparation des mouvements quasi-géostrophiques et des ondes internes pour l'observation satellite haute résolution

Contact: Aurelien Ponte (

Closing date: 29/05/2018

posted: 30 April 2018     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.