April 2017
Message 97

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[Met-jobs] Funded PhD position on waves/bubbles at UCL

From "Czerski, Helen" <>
To "" <>
Date Sat, 29 Apr 2017 11:52:52 +0000

The following funded PhD position is available to work with Dr Eugeny Buldakov and Dr Helen Czerski, starting in September 2017:

Aeration of the Upper Ocean by Breaking Waves

The UCL Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering (CEGE) and the Department of Mechanical Engineering invite applications for a four year (one year MRes and three year EngD) studentship to work on an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), UK funded project.  

Studentship Description
Both the atmosphere and the ocean are huge and dynamic fluid reservoirs, and together they drive global weather and climate. At the ocean surface, heat, momentum, gases and aerosol particles are continually exchanged between these two reservoirs, with consequences for both sides of the boundary. Breaking waves play an important role in those exchanges because they generate both large subsurface plumes of bubbles and surface foam patches (known as whitecaps). The detailed effects of bubble plumes and whitecaps are still poorly understood, but the large short-lived bubbles found in the upper metre of the ocean are thought to have a significant influence on both the exchange of carbon dioxide and also on aerosol production. A better mechanistic understanding of these bubbles is needed to improve current weather and climate models. 
Advanced experimental techniques will be used to generate breaking waves in the lab, and to study the concentration and size of air bubbles produced by a single breaking event. The project aims to establish a relationship between the global parameters of a breaking wave (such as wave spectrum and steepness) with the local parameters of a spilling breaker and the resulting bubble plume. Analysis of detailed ocean wave data from recent cruises will be used to assess which wave spectra are most appropriate for real conditions, and to consider the difference that this would make to the bubbles entrained by spilling breakers. Preliminary studies conducted at UCL show that the wave spectra affects bubble plume size distribution, especially in salt water. At present, the way of parametrising bubble generation by breakers assumes that one spilling breaker is the same as any other, and the preliminary work shows that this assumption is flawed. Since these bubbles are precisely the ones that are most important for carbon dioxide transfer, this could have a major effect on accuracy of prediction of upper ocean interaction with the atmosphere.  

Further details, including the application procedure, can be found here:

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