Innovative. Open-minded. Responsible.

We create the future with 5.500 students in economics and technology and 550 employees. Success in application oriented education, research, and executive education is our incentive.

Create this future with us as a

Research Associate (m/f)
"Subsurface heat transport beneath cities"

Center of Applied Research
Institute of new Energy Systems

(Reference number P-18/22)

The Institute of new Energy Systems (InES) is one of three institutes at the center of applied research at Technische Hochschule Ingolstadt (THI). Currently, there are six professors and more than 20 scientists at InES working on pioneering technologies in the field of renewable energies. Please visit for details on selected research projects at InES.

We are seeking a motivated PhD candidate for a research project fully funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). The project aims to address key knowledge gaps in subsurface heat transport by means of attuned field measurements and by coupled simulation techniques. The project offers dynamic and diverse training opportunities in academic engineering and application-oriented research environments.

The physical principles of heat transport processes in water, soil, sediments, and rocks are well understood, but each case is unique and we only have limited insight in the subsurface. Heat moves at low pace beneath our feet, and what we see now from our in-situ measurements are traces from decades ago or more. Natural rocks act like batteries which reveal secret recordings from the past and which offer an enormous geothermal storage potential. Hence, this thrilling field of research deals with fundamental physical processes covering large and variable temporal and spatial scales. It also provides the fundamental knowledge for successful geothermal energy engineering in the future.

The PhD project will be in collaboration with Nanjing University (Prof. Liu) and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT, Prof. Blum). We will investigate the thermal regime ("subsurface heat islands") beneath cities such as Cologne and Nanjing by repeated field measurements in soil and groundwater wells. The objective is to reveal common trends in such cities and to identify the driving factors for the past, present, and future conditions. An elementary component will be the use of analytical and numerical models, Geographic Information Systems, and shared data-bases. This project is expected to deliver results that are relevant for other urban environments and thus that have a substantial impact in science and practice.

Your responsibilities:

  • Planning and realization of measurement campaigns
  • Processing, interpretation, and (GIS) visualization of data
  • Comparing the thermal conditions beneath cities in Germany and China
  • Elaborating a process-based modelling concept for both cities
  • Project coordination with partners from academics and industry as well as supervision of B.Sc. and M.Sc. students
  • Presentation of results at conferences and publishing in peer-reviewed journals

Your profile:

We are seeking an enthusiastic and independent person with a passion for science and willingness to work in an evolving interdisciplinary team. Applicants must have a completed master's degree in geosciences, remote sensing, environmental sciences, physics, engineering, or any related field. Applicants must also be able to learn and pursue computational research as well as experimental approaches and/or field work. Good communication skills are essential. Skills in speaking, reading, and writing about science in English are a plus and German language skills are welcome.

We offer a temporary full-time position lasting three years. The remuneration shall be in line with the German industrial agreement L salary group 13. The possibility of a cooperative doctorate will be supported. The position starts in spring of 2018 (or soon as possible thereafter).

The ideal applicant should be comfortable in a multi-faceted, responsible position and should have the ability to work effectively both independently and with a team. We offer a family-friendly working environment, flexible working hours, and an attractive workplace.

If you have any questions please contact Prof. Peter Bayer ( or Dr. Ingo Dressel (

Individuals with disabilities of the same suitability will be favoured for this position. We expressly welcome applications from women (Section 7 Subsection 3 BayGIG, Bavarian Women's Equality Law).

Please send your detailed portfolio (Curriculum Vitae, copies of certificates, short statement of research experience and interest, the names and contact information of two potential referees, and supporting documents about former employment) stating the reference number as a single PDF file by 20 March 2018 to

Technische Hochschule Ingolstadt
Julia Schmidt
Postfach 21 04 54
85019 Ingolstadt
Telefon: 0841 9348-5088

posted: 20 February 2018     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.