PhD Position in Experimental Aerosol and Cloud Physics on targeted seeding with a drone

Updated: about 3 hours ago
Job Type: Permanent

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100%, Zurich, fixed-term

The Atmospheric Physics group at the Institute for Atmospheric and Climate Science (IAC) invites applications for a 3-year to 3.5-year PhD Position in Experimental Aerosol and Cloud Physics on targeted seeding with a drone. Our research focuses on the role of aerosol particles and clouds in the climate system. Our goal is to gain a better understanding of the cloud microphysical processes leading to precipitation in clouds involving ice.

Project background

The PhD project is part of the newly funded ERC project CloudLab that includes three PhDs and 2 PostDocs. Within CloudLab, ice nucleating particles from a drone will be injected into supercooled stratus clouds to investigate microphysical changes, including fundamental aspects of ice formation and growth. The project combines a multi-dimensional approach of targeted cloud seeding with a focus on wintertime stratus clouds in Switzerland. The microphysical changes induced by the seeding will be measured in-situ with a tethered balloon system and using ground-based remote sensing instrumentation. The analysis of the cloud seeding events will be used to validate and improve the cloud microphysics scheme in the Swiss weather forecast model and ultimately precipitation forecasts.

Job description
  • Participate in multiple field campaigns in the winter months, where stratus clouds over the Swiss Plateau are partially glaciated by glaciogenic seeding.
  • Develop a cloud seeding aperture on a drone and measure the dispersion of the seeding plume.
  • Confirm that seeding is changing the cloud particle size distribution and analyze the effects of seeding with different concentrations.

Your profile
  • MSc (or equivalent) in atmospheric/environmental science, physics, engineering, or a related field.
  • Sound knowledge of the English language, both orally and written, is expected.
  • Field work experience with aerosol / ice nucleating particle measurements, drone measurement/development and/or cloud seeding is an advantage.
  • Motivation to work in the field in rough conditions (at night).
  • Good communication and time management skills, as well as a willingness to participate in a collaborative and supportive research environment.
  • Applications from members of underrepresented groups in academia are specifically encouraged.

ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.

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