PhD student in space geodesy and geodynamics

Updated: 3 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 13 Jan 2024

24 Nov 2023
Job Information

Chalmers University of Technology
Research Field

Engineering » Geological engineering
Researcher Profile

First Stage Researcher (R1)

Application Deadline

13 Jan 2024 - 22:00 (UTC)
Type of Contract

Job Status

Is the job funded through the EU Research Framework Programme?

Not funded by an EU programme
Reference Number

Is the Job related to staff position within a Research Infrastructure?


Offer Description

To reliably monitor the Earth's ever-changing state, from earthquakes to climate change, it is necessary to have access to very precise measurements expressed in a stable, uniform and consistent terrestrial reference frame. The ITRF is the International Terrestrial Reference Frame, the standard reference frame recommended by a number of international scientific organisations: it is built from the measurements of four space geodetic techniques and consists of a set of coordinates, corresponding to each of the technique station positions. The four space geodetic techniques used are Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI), Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR), and Doppler Orbitography and Radiopositioning Integrated by Satellite (DORIS).

The Space Geodesy and Geodynamics (SGG) unit of the Onsala Space Observatory is leading various research projects involving the use of the c5++ software package, able to process and combine data from SLR, GNSS, and VLBI. With the advent of space missions carrying the four space geodetic techniques, a software package that can process data from all four techniques opens the possibility of research based on multi-technique combinations, making the necessary next step of c5++ development to be the implementation of DORIS.

Information about the research division and the project
We are looking for a highly motivated PhD student to develop the DORIS segment (data processing and implementation in the c5++ software package) at the Onsala Space Observatory. The research topics to be addressed are primarily the fields of DORIS, space geodetic technique combination, reference frames, geocenter, earth rotation and orientation, and global geodynamics. The PhD project is divided into two phases. The first phase will allow the student to acquire knowledge on the space geodetic technique DORIS and its data processing using the GEODYN software package, which is developed by the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) of NASA, in the USA. Then, the student will apply the knowledge acquired in the previous phase to implement DORIS in the c5++ software package in collaboration with colleagues from Japan who originally developed the software package.
The PhD position is in the research group for Space Geodesy and Geodynamics . Together we work to increase knowledge on how to best achieve a long-term sustainable planet. Our main working places are the Onsala Space Observatory, 40 km south of Gothenburg, and Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg.

Major responsibilities
Your major responsibilities as a PhD student are to pursue your own doctoral studies and to become an independent researcher. You are expected to develop and conduct your own research at the frontier of space geodesy and in particular DORIS, in combination to other space geodetic techniques. You are expected to develop your own scientific concepts and communicate the results of your research verbally and in writing, primarily in English. You are expected to write a licentiate thesis within 2–3 years and to defend your doctoral thesis within 4–5 years. The position generally may also includes teaching on Chalmers' undergraduate level or performing other duties corresponding to 20 per cent of working hours.

To qualify as a PhD student, you must have a master's level degree corresponding to at least 240 higher education credits in a relevant field, such as Geodesy, Aerospace Engineering, Physics, Engineering Physics, Mathematics, Engineering Mathematics, Geophysics or an equivalent education. 

The position requires sound verbal and written communication skills in English. If Swedish is not your native language, Chalmers offers Swedish courses.

Contract terms
Full-time temporary employment. The position is limited to a maximum of five years.

We offer
Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the coastal city of Gothenburg . 
Read more about working at Chalmers  and our benefits  for employees.

Chalmers aims to actively improve our gender balance. We work broadly with equality projects, for example the GENIE Initiative on gender equality for excellence . Equality and diversity are substantial foundations in all activities at Chalmers.

Application procedure
The application should be marked with reference number 20230695 and written in English. The application should be sent electronically and be attached as PDF-files, as below. Maximum size for each file is 40 MB. Please note that the system does not support Zip files.

CV:(Please name the document: CV, Family name, reference number)
• CV
• Other, for example previous employments or leadership qualifications and positions of trust.
• Two references that we can contact.

Personal letter:(Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, ref.number)
1-3 pages where you:
• Introduce yourself
• Describe your previous experience of relevance for the position (e.g. education, thesis work and, if applicable, any other research activities)
• Describe your future goals and future research focus

Other documents:
• Copies of bachelor and/or master’s thesis.
• Attested copies and transcripts of completed education, grades and other certificates, e.g. TOEFL test results.

Please use the button at the foot of the page to reach the application form. 

Application deadline: 2024-01-14

For questions, please contact:
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Karine Le Bail,OSO,
[email protected]

Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Haas, OSO,
[email protected]

Chalmers University of Technology conducts research and education in engineering sciences, architecture, technology-related mathematical sciences, natural and nautical sciences, working in close collaboration with industry and society. The strategy for scientific excellence focuses on our six Areas of Advance; Energy, Health Engineering, Information and Communication Technology, Materials Science, Production and Transport. The aim is to make an active contribution to a sustainable future using the basic sciences as a foundation and innovation and entrepreneurship as the central driving forces. Chalmers has around 11,000 students and 3,000 employees. New knowledge and improved technology have characterised Chalmers since its foundation in 1829, completely in accordance with the will of William Chalmers and his motto: Avancez!


Research Field
Education Level
Master Degree or equivalent


Research Field
Physics » Other
Years of Research Experience

Additional Information
Work Location(s)
Number of offers available
Chalmers University of Technology
Postal Code
Chalmers Tekniska Högskola

Where to apply



Chalmers Tekniska Högskola
Postal Code



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