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Postdoctoral Research Assistant
Whiteknights Reading UK

Job reference: SRF31697

Location: Whiteknights Reading UK

Closing date: 06/09/2020

Job live date: 28/07/2020

Salary: £30,942 to £40,322 per annum

Employment type: AR-Research

Department: School of Mathematical Physical & Computational Sciences

Division: Meteorology

Hours per week: 1.00FTE

Employment Basis/Type: Full-time, Fixed-term up to 14 Months

Applications are invited for a postdoctoral position to investigate the response of ice clouds to aircraft emissions. This position is part of the Horizon 2020 project Advancing the Science for Aviation and ClimAte (ACACIA), a consortium of 11 European partners led by the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR, German Aerospace Center). ACACIA aims to improve scientific understanding of non-CO2 climate impacts of aviation, including those exerts by ozone and methane from NOx emissions, contrails, and aerosol interactions with clouds. Those impacts are very uncertain and hinder the creation of a more climate-friendly aviation system.

Your main role within the project will be twofold: (1) run large-eddy simulation of cirrus clouds to sample aviation impacts on upper tropospheric clouds for various weather situations. You will also perform sensitivity studies to quantify the influence of the ice nucleating ability of the aerosol, of the dynamic forcing on the ice freezing pathways and efficiencies, and of the parametric uncertainties of cloud ice sinks including sedimentation, mixing and coagulation. (2) contribute to a satellite analysis of regional and global effective radiative forcing of contrail cirrus, based on new ice microphysics retrievals from combined CALIPSO/CloudSat observations. 

This  fixed-term position is up to 14-month  based at the Department of Meteorology of the University of Reading, with day-to-day supervision by Dr Nicolas Bellouin.

You will have:

  • or close to be obtaining a PhD in atmospheric physics, or in a closely related field including remote sensing, meteorology and climate science;
  • Excellent analytical and computational skills, with a proven ability to handle, post-process, and analyse large datasets;
  • Experience of using large-scale or process-based numerical models of the atmosphere for research purposes. Experience of large eddy simulation is desirable;
  • Good willingness to learn new techniques relevant to the project;
  • Self-motivated with ability to take initiative and carry out independent work;
  • Willingness to collaborate with a team of distributed scientists towards common project goals;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.

Interview date- 29 September 2020

Informal contact details

Contact role:

Line Manager

Contact name:

Nicolas Bellouin

Contact phone:

+44 (0) 118 378 7639

Contact email:

The University is committed to having a diverse and inclusive workforce, supports the gender equality Athena SWAN Charter and the Race Equality Charter, and is a Diversity Champion for Stonewall, the leading LGBT+ rights organisation. Applications for job-share, part-time and flexible working arrangements are welcomed and will be considered in line with business needs.


The closing date for this job has now passed.


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