PhD Position Sediment Transport North Sea Shelf and Norwegian Trench

Updated: 3 months ago
Deadline: 31 Oct 2022

PhD Position Sediment Transport North Sea Shelf and Norwegian Trench
PhD Position Sediment Transport North Sea Shelf and Norwegian Trench
Published Deadline Location
yesterday 31 Oct Delft

Challenge: What is the fate of carbon in the North Sea?Change: Measure and model sediment transport as part of the carbon fluxes   Impact: Contributing to understanding the North Sea
Job description

The North Sea-Atlantic Exchange (NoSE) project
The North Sea is a highly productive and heavily exploited continental shelf sea that absorbs significant quantities of atmospheric CO2. But the fate of absorbed CO2 is highly uncertain, in particular the balance between outflow into the Atlantic Ocean and burial in sediments, so we cannot accurately project how this may change in the future. The NoSE project team consists of a multidisciplinary consortium of researchers from NIOZ, Delft University of Technology, University of Groningen, Utrecht University, and several international partners. 6 PhDs and 3 postdocs will be newly appointed. We will determine the past, present and future role of the North Sea within the wider biogeochemical system of the Atlantic Ocean. Focusing on the Norwegian Trench, which is both the main outflow route to the Atlantic Ocean and the main place where sediments accumulate within the North Sea, we will investigate the transport and conversion processes that regulate carbon and nutrient exchange between the land, shelf sea and open ocean through a combination of oceanographic research expeditions and computer modelling. By linking these results to the palaeo record from seafloor sediments, NoSE will reveal new insights into how the cycling of carbon and nutrients in the North Sea and their exchange with the Atlantic Ocean have varied over the past thousands of years and how they may continue to evolve in the future. See also:

Position at Delft University of Technology
The objective of the PhD at TU Delft is to determine the physical and biogeochemical parameters that control benthic lateral transport of fine, organic‐rich sediment into and within the Norwegian Trench. You will join the research cruises to the Norwegian Trench, where you will install frames with various instruments to measure hydrodynamics and sediment transport and you will take sediment samples to determine sediment composition and erodability. Furthermore, you will model sediment transport pathways with regional scale models of the North West European Shelf. The sediment transport results will be input for quantification of the carbon cycle.

Your research will be embedded in the NoSE project. At TU Delft, you will be part of the Environmental Fluid Mechanics section where we combine research on biogeomorphology, sediment transport, numerical modelling and oceanography. 

  • 32—38 hours per week
  • €2541—€3247 per month
  • Delft View on Google Maps

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


Required conditions are:

  • Master of Science (MSc) in a relevant field, e.g.Oceanography, Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Physical Geography
  • Excellent communication skills (written and oral), including proficiency in English. See .

In addition:

  • You have a passion for doing research in teamwork (including at least two research cruises on the North Sea).
  • You have affinity and a strong interest in numerical modelling, field campaigns and data analysis.
  • You look forward to combining different research fields, a.o.: sediment dynamics, oceanography, and biogeochemistry.
  • You are enthusiastic to share your ideas and findings via scientific papers, presentations at (inter)national conferences and where possible with a wider public.  

Doing 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 .

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

All PhDs in the project start the 1st of February 2023. 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 € 2541 per month in the first year to € 3247 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

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 as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!

Faculty Civil Engineering & Geosciences

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.

Additional information

For more information about this vacancy (e.g. further project details or about doing a PhD at TU Delft), please contact Bram van Prooijen ( )

Working at TU Delft

Join the oldest and largest technical university in the Netherlands. Work on clever solutions for worldwide challenges, to change the world and make an impact. Ready to bring your energy to our research?

Challenge, change, impact!

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Application procedure

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 1-11-2022 via the application button and upload:

  • Motivation letter (1-3 pages): convince us why you are suited for this position: what attracts you?; how do your knowledge and skills match with the position (and where not)? What is your ambition, and how does this position fit in?
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Course+grade list of your Master's program  
  • Contact details of two references   

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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