Investigation of vertical distribution of atmospheric particles and their dynamics in the Arctic using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and remote sensing technologies

Applications are invited for a PhD fellowship/scholarship at Graduate School of Science and Technology, Aarhus University, Denmark, within the Environmental Science programme. The position is available from 1 February 2018 or later.


Title:
Investigation of vertical distribution of atmospheric particles and their dynamics in the Arctic using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and remote sensing technologies.


Research area and project description:
Hitherto research focus has been on surface related studies of atmospheric pollutants and corresponding processes. The increasing need of assessing climate forcing also changes the regime where information is needed. Climate forcing depends on the entire atmospheric column. Large knowledge gaps exist for the vertical distribution of the short lived climate forcers and this is especially the case in the high Arctic. UAVs equipped with specific instrumentation for atmospheric research represent a stable platform that can be used to measure and characterize atmospheric particles and other climate forcers up to an altitude of about 5 km. 

The aim of the project is to determine the vertical distribution of climate-relevant particle properties together with other atmospheric parameters in order to assess the dynamics of short lived climate forcers in the high Artic troposphere, and to develop the UAVs into a platform for climate research.

This PhD project will utilize UAVs together with remote sensing technologies such as multi axial differential optical absorption spectroscopy to study atmospheric particles and relevant processes in the first 5 km of the troposphere. The principal measurement site where the UAVs will be operated is Villum Research Station, Station Nord, in North Greenland. The UAVs will be equipped with microsystems as e.g. Mixing Condensation Particle Counter (MCPC) and Single-channel Tricolor Absorption Photometer (S-TAP).  Therefore, it is anticipated that the student has to stay at least for 2 times during field studies at Villum Research Station for a 2-month duration. 


Qualifications and specific competences:
Applicants to the PhD position must have a Master’s degree in chemistry, physics or similar. The student is practically oriented as it is foreseen to take license to fly UAVs at sizes with wing span of about 3.8 m and 35 kg and to fly beyond line of sight.


Place of Employment and Place of Work:
The place of employment is Department of Environmental Science, Aarhus University, Frederiksborgvej 399, DK-4000 Roskilde, Denmark, though it is foreseen that stays at Villum Research Station, Station Nord, in North Greenland for a duration up to 2 month will be needed as well as shorter periods at other Greenlandic locations.   


Contacts:
Applicants seeking further information are invited to contact:

Professor Henrik Skov; E-mail: hsk@envs.au.dk, Phone: (+45) 30783170

Senior Scientist Andreas Massling; E-mail: anma@envs.au.dk, Phone: (+45) 30183123



Application procedures


Before you apply

Information and attachments:

Please be aware that you must have all relevant appendices, attachments, addresses for referees, etc. ready when you apply, as the entire application must be uploaded to the system in one go.

Documentation of language skills:

The English language requirement at Graduates School of Science and Technology is comparable to an “English B level” in the Danish upper secondary school (“gymnasium”).

English language qualifications comparable to an “English B level” is documented by one of the following tests:

  • TOEFL test, minimum score: 560 (paper-based test) or 83 (internet-based test). Aarhus University does not accept the TOEFL ITP test. Aarhus University’s TOEFL code is 8935. You must request that the test centre send your test results to Aarhus University, in order to enable verification of your test results.
  • IELTS (academic) test, minimum average score: 6.5 points
  • Cambridge English Language Assessment:
    Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency (CPE)
    Cambridge English: Certificate of Advanced English with grade A,B or C (CAE)
    Cambridge English: First Certificate  with grade A (FCE)

When to take the test and how to upload the documentation:
The test result must not be more than two years old at the time of application.

The English language test should be taken before applying for admission and uploaded under “language skills documentation” in the online application form.

It is possible to apply for admission before you have taken the test. In this case documentation stating that you have signed up for a test (please state expected submission date) must be uploaded. If the test result is not part of the original application the test result is to be sent to sphd@psys.au.dk no later than one month after the application deadline.

The following applicants are exempted from documenting their English qualifications/taking a test:

  • Applicants with citizenship from the following countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States, or one of the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway or Sweden).
  • Applicants with a Bachelor’s or Master’s programme completed in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, or United States. In this case, please upload your Bachelor’s or Master’s diploma under the section ”Language skills documentation”.
  • Applicants with a Bachelor’s or Master’s programme completed at Aarhus University for which the requirement was English B level at the time of admission. In this case, please upload your Bachelor’s or Master’s diploma under the section”Language skills documentation”.
  • Applicants able to document that English was the language of instruction during the whole period of their Bachelor’s and/or Master’s programme. This must be documented by uploading an official document from the institution stating this under “language skills documentation”. The onus is on the applicant to provide this information as GSST will not pursue information regarding language of instruction for any programmes or institutions.

The programme committee may request further information or invite the applicant to attend an interview.


How to apply:

1)      Find the application form:
Go to http://talent.au.dk/phd/scienceandtechnology/opencalls/
Choose November 2017 Call with deadline 1 November 2017 at 11.59 PM MET.
You will be directed to the call, and must choose the programme 'Environmental Science'

2)      Fill in the following information:

  • Personal information
  • Academic background
  • Admission
  • Financing (if any)
  • Study: In the dropdown menu you must choose the project: "Investigation of vertical distribution of atmospheric particles and their dynamics in the Arctic using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and remote sensing technologies"
  • Source (how you found out about the call)

Next to some of the information fields you will find a number. Click on the number to get further directions on how to fill in the information field/what information is needed.

3)      Application attachments:
Please be aware that you cannot submit the application if one or several of these documents have not been uploaded.

If you wish to upload more than one document under each section, you must scan/merge all documents into one large PDF file and upload this. Please note that we reserve the right to remove scientific papers, large reports, theses and the like. Instead you can indicate a URL where the information is available.

Please note that all information in the application must be in Danish or English.

As a minimum all applications must include (pdf-files only, max. 20 MB, no zip):

  • One reference (template for references)
  • Curriculum vitae,
  • Motivation (max. 1 page)
  • Transcripts and diploma(s)
  • Project description (½-4 pages). For technical reasons, you must upload a project description. When - as here - you apply for a specific project, please simply copy the project description above, and upload it as a PDF in the application. If you wish to, you can indicate an URL where further information can be found.  Please note that we reserve the right to remove scientific papers, large reports, theses and the like.
  • Documentation of language skills if required.

After submission of the application, you will receive a confirmation e-mail with an application ID, you should use for reference if needed. The e-mail will also include a link to the application – GSST urges you to check that all mandatory data, marked with an asterisk (*), is registered correctly and all attached files are readable. In case of significant errors, you should reply to the confirmation e-mail with the correct details before the application deadline.

GSST reserves the right to verify the authenticity of your educational diploma and transcripts:

  • Request additional information to verify an application.
  • Reject the application if it is proven, or if the University has reasonable belief, that the information provided is false or if the applicant refuses to provide the requested information, whether or not an offer has already been made. 
  • For further information on applying, assessment procedures, etc. please see the GSST application guide here  

Please note:

  • The programme committee may request further information or invite the applicant to attend an interview.
  • The project will only be initiated if final funding (from GSST/the faculty) is secured.

All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal background.