Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ)

Postdoctoral Researcher (m/f/x)

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ)

Leipzig, Germany

The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) with its 1,100 employees has gained an excellent reputation as an international competence centre for environmental sciences. We are part of the largest scientific organisation in Germany, the Helmholtz association. Our mission: Our research seeks to find a balance between social development and the long-term protection of our natural resources.

Extreme hydrological events like droughts cause major economic damages and societal havoc. The UFZ runs the German drought monitor (GDM, www.ufz.de/duerremonitor) that provides daily near real time information of soil moisture droughts in Germany. Stakeholders and decision makers use the GDM as a primary source of drought in Germany. The German drought monitor uses the mesoscale Hydrologic Model (mHM, www.ufz.de/mhm) equipped with the Multiscale Parameter Regionalization (MPR) to simulate soil moisture up to a depth of 2 m. The major challenge in soil moisture drought modeling is the accurate representation of vegetation, in particular the plant dynamics for different crop types that is currently underrepresented in mHM. Novel land cover maps based on the European Space Agency Sentinel-2 satellite mission allow to resolve different crop types at a spatial resolution of 20 m. Using this novel high-resolution observation, the task of the successful applicant is 1) to implement a dynamic vegetation module in mHM and parametrize it using the MPR scheme; 2) to validate the newly developed module with satellite-based observation such as land-surface temperature and leaf area index; 3) to conduct a historic reconstruction of soil moisture droughts using the newly developed module and to quantify the differences against the previous version of mHM that is currently used in the German drought monitor.

The Department of Computational Hydrosystems (CHS) therefore invites applications for a

Postdoctoral Researcher (m/f/x)

Subject: Improved vegetation modeling for soil moisture drought estimation

Start at the earliest possible date, working time: 100% (39 hours per week), limited to 18 months

Your tasks:
• Development of a dynamic vegetation module within the mesoscale Hydrologic Model (mHM)
• Regionalization of model parameters using the Multiscale Parameter Regionalization (MPR)
• Calibration of model parameters using satellite observation of land-surface temperature and leaf area index
• Soil moisture drought reconstruction for Germany and statistical analysis of drought area and magnitude

Your profile:

  • Strong background in vegetation processes with a focus on modelling
  • Strong background in high-level programming language (e.g., Fortran, C)
  • Excellent command of English
  • Experience in high-performance computing is a plus
  • Strong background in statistics is a plus
  • Relevant publication record and/or open source repositories
  • Degree in biology, hydrology, physics or maths

We offer:

  • Excellent technical facilities which are without parallel
  • The freedom you need to bridge the difficult gap between basic research and close to being ready for application
  • Work in inter-disciplinary, multinational teams and excellent links with national and international research networks
  • A vibrant region with a high quality of life and a wide cultural offering for a balance between family and professional life
  • Interesting career opportunities and an extensive range of training and further education courses
  • Remuneration up to the TVöD public-sector pay grade 13 including attractive public-sector social security benefits

The UFZ has a strong commitment to diversity and actively supports equal opportunities for all employees regardless of their origin, religion, ideology, disability, age or sexual identity. We look forward to applications from people who are open-minded and enjoy working in diverse teams.

Your contact for any questions you may have about the job:
Prof. Dr. Sabine Attinger

Please submit your application via our online portal with your cover letter, CV (please omit your photo, age, or marital status) and relevant attachments.

Closing date for applications: 20.12.2019

Place of work: Leipzig

More information about jobs at the UFZ: www.ufz.de/career
Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung GmbH – UFZ
Permoserstraße 15
04318 Leipzig, Germany

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: 1799