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 Position “Subglacial discharge of melt water in Greenland” (m/f/d)

Background: The subglacial hydrological system transports basal meltwater and meltwater from the surface of the ice sheet towards the ocean. We use an equivalent porous medium approach combined with a confined-unconfined aquifer scheme to address the seasonality of meltwater input.

The main goal of this study is to simulate the subglacial freshwater discharge of Greenland resulting from surface melt over various time periods and to assess criticality limits. Our aim is to understand the response times of the subglacial system and the impact of different frequencies of extreme melt years on the system’s recovery.


  • Conducting and analysing simulations using the CUAS-MPI code on high-performance computing (HPC) platforms
  • Generating forcing data
  • Writing scientific papers
  • Presenting results at international conferences


  • Master of Science degree in simulation technologies, applied mechanics, computational engineering, engineering hydrology or a related field
  • Experience with continuum mechanics of porous media and hydromechanics
  • Experience with simulations and analysis of simulation data
  • Proficiency in Python, shell scripting and UNIX/LINUX
  • Good communication skills in English, both oral and written

Further Information Please contact Prof. Dr. Angelika Humbert or Dr. Thomas Kleiner (Tel: +49 471 4831 1834/1699; / for further information.

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 and towards other positions
  • an international environment – everyday contacts with people from all over the world
  • flexible working hours and the possibility of mobile working up to 50% of regular working hours
  • Health promotion and company fitness with qualitrain
  • support services and a culture of reconciling work and family
  • Occupational pension provision (VBL)
  • Jobticket

Equal opportunities are an integral part of our personnel policy. The AWI aims to increase the number of employees who are women, and therefore strongly encourages qualified women to apply. Applicants with disabilities 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, including (1) a letter of motivation, (2) a CV and copies of relevant certificates (master’s degree; training), (3) two letters of recommendation or the contact information of two references, by August 14th, 2023.

Electronic applications only. Interviews will take place between 04th and 08th of September 2023.
Reference number: 23/120/G/INSPIRES-b


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