January 2018
Message 49

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[Met-jobs] Two PhD positions: atmospheric dynamics and sub-seasonal predictability at KIT, Germany

From "Grams, Christian (IMK)" <>
To <>
Date Wed, 17 Jan 2018 22:35:04 +0100

Two PhD positions in the field of atmospheric dynamics and sub-seasonal predictability at KIT, Germany

We are inviting applications for two funded PhD positions in the project „Sub-seasonal Atmospheric Predictability: Understanding the Role of Diabatic Outflow” (SPREADOUT). The PhD students will be supervised by Dr Christian M. Grams and Dr Julian F. Quinting at the Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research – Department Tropospheric Research of KIT ( in the new group “Large-scale Dynamics and Predictability”.

The group investigates sub-seasonal predictability (several days to a few weeks) from an atmospheric dynamics' perspective. SPREADOUT aims to provide a comprehensive investigation of the physical and dynamical processes that control predictability and forecast skill on sub-seasonal time scales, with a focus on the role of diabatic outflow in the life cycle of large-scale flow regimes in the Atlantic-European region.

PhD 1 (ideally starting summer 2018): Sensitivity of diabatic outflow

This sub-project will investigate processes influencing the intensity of diabatic outflow at specific stages of weather regime life cycles. Therefore, numerical sensitivity experiments with the global numerical weather prediction model ICON will be performed for selected case studies. For a start, cases of blocked regimes during the NAWDEX field campaign ( will be used to test sensitivities of diabatic outflow to various model configurations. This will then be extended on representative cases for different weather regimes in the Atlantic-European region.

PhD 2 (ideally starting autumn 2018): Predictability of diabatic outflow

This sub-project will investigate the forecast skill of diabatic outflow at specific regime life cycles stages. Therefore, operational and reforecast data of sub-seasonal prediction models available in the S2S data base ( will be used. The variety of ensemble solutions allows to elucidate the dynamical and physical pathways leading to contrasting forecast scenarios of weather regime life cycles. Initially the focus is on the NAWDEX period (September – October 2016). In addition, the project will verify the general representation of diabatic outflow based on reforecast data from the S2S models and Germany’s seasonal forecasting system GCFS.


We are looking for highly motivated, independent candidates that are keen to contribute to and to become part of an enthusiastic team. We offer a dynamic work environment at one of Germany's foremost research institutions for natural science and technology (read more at with attractive programs for young researchers ( and the possibility to join the GRACE graduate school In addition, the group collaborates with leading forecasting centres (e.g. ECMWF, DWD) and colleagues world-wide. This offers the opportunity for research stays at different institutions, to attend international conferences and workshops, and to become connected to the international research community.



Both positions require a Master's degree in Atmospheric Science/Meteorology/Applied Physics or Mathematics and equivalent. We expect the candidate to be familiar to work in a Linux environment (shell-scripting, etc.) and to have good programming skills in Fortran, Python, NCL, or R. We also expect strong interest in data processing and numerical modelling, some background would be a plus but is not required. The candidates should be fluent in English. Finally, the candidates should be willing to present their research at international conferences and to participate in workshops. 


Employment conditions

The positions are offered for 3 years. Envisioned start dates are June 2018 (PhD1) and October 2018 (PhD2), but there is some flexibility for an earlier or later start date. The positions are remunerated according to TV-L E13 75% (approximately 1700 Euro net salary per month) with extensive social and health care benefits. The group is based on the research campus of KIT located about 10 km to the North of Karlsruhe city centre.


Applications and deadline

Please submit (1) a motivation letter (max. 2 pages, indicate preferred starting date), (2) a curriculum vitae (including research experience e.g. Bachelor/Master's theses, publications, programming and language skills), (3) the names and addresses of two references, and (4) copies of relevant certificates in a single pdf file named “PhDX_lastname_firstname.pdf” (X=1,2, or 12 indicating the preference for one of the positions) to

Initial review of all applications begins on 31st January 2018 but will continue until the positions are filled. Please note that we aim to find interested candidates with this initial call. We will inform you timely about a second call for the official application at KIT.


For further information please contact Christian Grams.


Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research (IMK)
Department Troposphere Research (IMK-TRO)

Dr. Christian Grams
Large-scale Dynamics and Predictability

Phone: +49 721 608-26544

Visitor Address:
Campus North Building 435 
Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1
76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen 

KIT - The Research University in the Helmholtz Association

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