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Postdoctoral Scientist in Earth System Data Assimilation

Job Summary
Job Summary
Sector Academic
Categories Atmospheric Sciences
Nonlinear Processes in Geosciences
Ocean Sciences
Type Full Time
Level Experienced
Employer Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research
Location Bremerhaven, Germany
Salary Salary group 13 of the German Tarifvertrag des öffentlichen Dienstes (TVöD Bund)
Required Education PhD
Application Deadline 18 May 2017
Posted 21 April 2017
Employer Information

The Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) is a member of the Helmholtz Association (HGF) – Germany’s largest research organization – 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.


Job Description

The working group Scientific Computing at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven, Germany, invites applications for the position of a Postdoctoral Scientist to perform research into coupled Earth system data assimilation as part of the research project “Advanced Earth System Modelling Capacity” (ESM) of the Helmholtz Association—Germany’s largest research organization.

Background and tasks:
ESM is a cooperative project involving 8 research centers of the Helmholtz Association—Germany’s largest research organization—with the goal to advance Earth system modelling capacity. Related work at the Alfred Wegener Institute builds on the AWI Climate Model (AWI-CM), a coupled atmosphere-sea ice-ocean model employing unstructured meshes for the ocean-sea ice component. The work package on data assimilation aims at developing methods for simultaneously assimilating observations of both the ocean and the atmosphere, using the Parallel Data Assimilation Framework (PDAF) developed at AWI. Particular foci are on cross-compartment assimilation, that is, the influence of the data assimilation in one compartment on the other compartment(s), and on properly accounting for the different atmospheric and oceanic time scales.

We are searching for an enthusiastic postdoctoral researcher with strong interest in Earth system modeling and data assimilation. The post-doc will join the data assimilation team at AWI, which has strong experience in data assimilation from the development and application of PDAF. In this context, strong collaboration with the Climate Dynamics section (Prof. Dr. Thomas Jung and Dr. Helge Goessling) is envisaged.

The tasks of the postdoc will be as follows: Couple the data assimilation component with the AWI-CM; implement the routines that handle the assimilated observations; and study the data assimilation impact on the coupled model by performing data assimilation experiments on high-performance computers. Further tasks of the postdoc will be the publication of the research results in scientific journals and their presentation at international conferences.

The candidate should hold a PhD in ocean or atmospheric sciences, applied mathematics, physics or a related discipline. Experience in at least one of the fields of ensemble data assimilation or numerical ocean, atmosphere or Earth system modeling is required. Further requirements include experience in Fortran programming, parallelization with MPI, and effectively using Unix/Linux computer environments. We expect excellent knowledge of English and very good skills to work in a team of scientists.

For further information please contact Dr. Lars Nerger (lars.nerger(at) or Dr. Helge Goessling (helge.goessling(at)

For the full position announcement, see

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