PhD Position Physico-biogeochemical processes in the transition of sediment to soil

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 25 May 2022

Increase of sea level and land subsidence necessitate enforcement of dikes. In north-western Europe, aged marsh soils have traditionally been used for this purpose, which are a scarce and hardly renewable resource. The project Sediment-to-Soil (S2S), financed by the Dutch Science Foundation (NWO), will study, optimise and predict the transition of fine-grained sediment dredged from ports, waterways, barrages or sluices, to soil for use as alternative earthen construction material. Improved mechanistic understanding and predictability of the ripening processes is necessary to assess the material’s long-term biogeochemical and structural stability as well as environmental compliance and carbon footprinting of constructions from ripened dredged sediment.

S2S will deliver fundamental scientific insight into soil physical, mechanical and biogeochemical processes including organic matter stabilisation and contaminant leaching occurring in the transition from water-driven to land-driven soil processes and enable their optimization and predictability over time.

As member of the S2S research team, you will

  • Analyse the spatiotemporal development of and links between mechanical, physical, chemical and biological soil properties over the course of the Sediment-to-Soil process;
  • Identify the relevant factors and large-scale practical options to enhance the ripening process;
  • Assess the environmental compliance of dredged material applications;

using different full-scale living sediment labs and targeted laboratory experiments. This position includes self-responsible travelling for monitoring and sample collection to the project’s living labs in the Netherlands and Germany.

Your work will feed into new numerical models that combine physical and biogeochemical processes including stabilisation of organic matter and mobilisation of contaminants and will pioneer prediction of the evolution of clayey-organic systems during ripening in time and space.

As a successful applicant you will have:

  • A relevant MSc degree in Soil Science/Earth-Sciences/(Bio-)Geo-Sciences;
  • Excellent communication and writing skills in English, as evidenced by a writing sample, such as a chapter from your Master’s Thesis or a (forthcoming or published) article or presented conference paper;
  • Pro-active communication skills and ability to work well in a diverse team;
  • A driver’s license.

A PhD at TU Delft requires English proficiency at a certain level to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements .

Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2443 per month in the first year to € 3122 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation.

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context. At TU Delft we embrace diversity and aim to be as inclusive as possible (see our Code of Conduct ). Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale.

Challenge. Change. Impact! 

The Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences (CEG) is committed to outstanding international research and education in the field of civil engineering, applied earth sciences, traffic and transport, water technology, and delta technology. Our research feeds into our educational programmes and covers societal challenges such as climate change, energy transition, resource depletion, urbanisation and the availability of clean water, conducted  in close cooperation with a wide range of research institutions. CEG is convinced that Open Science helps to achieve our goals and supports its scientists in integrating Open Science in their research practice. The Faculty of CEG comprises 28 research groups in the following seven departments: Materials Mechanics Management & Design, Engineering Structures, Geoscience and Engineering, Geoscience and Remote Sensing, Transport & Planning, Hydraulic Engineering and Water Management.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences.

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Dr. habil. Julia Gebert, e-mail: j.gebert@tudelft.nl .

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply no later than May 30th 2022 via the application button and upload your motivation and CV.

Please include in your application:

  • Short motivation letter (max. 1 page) covering your research interest and relevant experience in relation to our position;
  • 1-2 page CV and a one-page summary of your MSc thesis including publication list (if applicable);
  • Copies of academic qualifications including list of courses and marks;
  • Two recommendation letters (or alternatively the names and email addresses of two references).

We expect to hold the job interviews in May 2022.

Please note:

  • You can apply online. We will not process applications sent by email and/or post.
  • A pre-employment screening can be part of the selection procedure.
  • Acquisition in response to this vacancy is not appreciated.

Increase of sea level and land subsidence necessitate enforcement of dikes. In north-western Europe, aged marsh soils have traditionally been used for this purpose, which are a scarce and hardly renewable resource. The project Sediment-to-Soil (S2S), financed by the Dutch Science Foundation (NWO), will study, optimise and predict the transition of fine-grained sediment dredged from ports, waterways, barrages or sluices, to soil for use as alternative earthen construction material. Improved mechanistic understanding and predictability of the ripening processes is necessary to assess the material’s long-term biogeochemical and structural stability as well as environmental compliance and carbon footprinting of constructions from ripened dredged sediment.

S2S will deliver fundamental scientific insight into soil physical, mechanical and biogeochemical processes including organic matter stabilisation and contaminant leaching occurring in the transition from water-driven to land-driven soil processes and enable their optimization and predictability over time.

As member of the S2S research team, you will

  • Analyse the spatiotemporal development of and links between mechanical, physical, chemical and biological soil properties over the course of the Sediment-to-Soil process;
  • Identify the relevant factors and large-scale practical options to enhance the ripening process;
  • Assess the environmental compliance of dredged material applications;

using different full-scale living sediment labs and targeted laboratory experiments. This position includes self-responsible travelling for monitoring and sample collection to the project’s living labs in the Netherlands and Germany.

Your work will feed into new numerical models that combine physical and biogeochemical processes including stabilisation of organic matter and mobilisation of contaminants and will pioneer prediction of the evolution of clayey-organic systems during ripening in time and space.

As a successful applicant you will have:

  • A relevant MSc degree in Soil Science/Earth-Sciences/(Bio-)Geo-Sciences;
  • Excellent communication and writing skills in English, as evidenced by a writing sample, such as a chapter from your Master’s Thesis or a (forthcoming or published) article or presented conference paper;
  • Pro-active communication skills and ability to work well in a diverse team;
  • A driver’s license.

A PhD at TU Delft requires English proficiency at a certain level to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements .

Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2443 per month in the first year to € 3122 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation.

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context. At TU Delft we embrace diversity and aim to be as inclusive as possible (see our Code of Conduct ). Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale.

Challenge. Change. Impact! 

The Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences (CEG) is committed to outstanding international research and education in the field of civil engineering, applied earth sciences, traffic and transport, water technology, and delta technology. Our research feeds into our educational programmes and covers societal challenges such as climate change, energy transition, resource depletion, urbanisation and the availability of clean water, conducted  in close cooperation with a wide range of research institutions. CEG is convinced that Open Science helps to achieve our goals and supports its scientists in integrating Open Science in their research practice. The Faculty of CEG comprises 28 research groups in the following seven departments: Materials Mechanics Management & Design, Engineering Structures, Geoscience and Engineering, Geoscience and Remote Sensing, Transport & Planning, Hydraulic Engineering and Water Management.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences.

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Dr. habil. Julia Gebert, e-mail: j.gebert@tudelft.nl .

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply no later than May 30th 2022 via the application button and upload your motivation and CV.

Please include in your application:

  • Short motivation letter (max. 1 page) covering your research interest and relevant experience in relation to our position;
  • 1-2 page CV and a one-page summary of your MSc thesis including publication list (if applicable);
  • Copies of academic qualifications including list of courses and marks;
  • Two recommendation letters (or alternatively the names and email addresses of two references).

We expect to hold the job interviews in May 2022.

Please note:

  • You can apply online. We will not process applications sent by email and/or post.
  • A pre-employment screening can be part of the selection procedure.
  • Acquisition in response to this vacancy is not appreciated.

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