April 2019
Message 31

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[Met-jobs] PhD opportunity at University of Otago on modelling sea ice breakup due to ocean waves

From Fabien Montiel <>
To <>
Date Fri, 5 Apr 2019 09:56:14 +1300


We are looking for a PhD student to investigate the physical mechanisms governing sea ice breakup under wave action in the marginal ice zone. The project will involve developing a small-scale model of ocean waves breaking up a small number of ice floes with various shapes and sizes. The model will combine fracture mechanics and wave hydrodynamics. Field and laboratory data collected in recent experimental programmes will be used to validate the model. Outputs of the model will be processed to create a parametrised formulation describing wave-induced sea ice breakup that will be integrated in a coupled large scale ocean waves/sea ice model.

The successful candidate will be supervised by Dr Fabien Montiel ( as part of the 3-year project "Breaking the ice: process-informed modelling of sea ice erosion due to ocean wave interactions" funded by a prestigious NZ Marsden grant, which involves collaborations with colleagues in the US and Europe. The student will be part of the vibrant NZ community of early-career polar scientists and will have many opportunities to interact with the broader international wave and sea ice communities during conferences and research visits.

The successful candidate will be funded by a competitive University of Otago PhD scholarship, which includes a 3-year stipend of NZ$ 27,500 per year (tax free and includes a fee waiver), research costs, and travel support to national and international conferences. Additional funding for travel will be available through the supervisor's Marsden grant.

The project is ideally suited for someone with interests in mathematical modelling, physical oceanography, polar science and climate modelling. A strong background in mathematics and physics, as well as computing skills, are essential. Prior knowledge in fluid mechanics, elasticity and/or water wave theory will be an advantage, but are not essential. Both New Zealand and international students are encouraged to apply.

If you are interested in working with Fabien Montiel on this cutting-edge science project and being part of a very active international sea ice community, then please get in touch by sending your CV, transcripts of undergraduate and Masters studies, and the names and contact details of 2 referees.

Contact by email:

Dr Fabien Montiel
Lecturer in Applied Mathematics

Department of Mathematics and Statistics
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand
ph: +64 3 479 7760

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