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2 PhD Positions (f/m/x) - Hydrogeochemical Simulations
The Helmholtz Centre Potsdam – GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences is the national centre for geosphere research. As a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres we are part of the largest scientific organization in Germany. With approximately 1,300 employees our key mission is to secure a profound understanding of the systems and processes of solid Earth, to develop strategies and options for action in addressing global change and its impacts on a regional level, to understand natural hazards and to minimize associated risks, to ensure the sustainable provision of energy and raw materials for a high-tech society and to evaluate the influence of human activity on system Earth.
As a partner in Geo.X, the GFZ has access to an excellent network of other geoscience institutions in Potsdam and Berlin. This largest regional concentration of geoscientific competence in Europe offers first-class cooperation and development opportunities.
For section 3.4 Fluid Systems Modelling (Department 3 - Geochemistry), we are looking for:

2 PhD Positions (f/m/x) - Hydrogeochemical Simulations

Reference Number 5104

Your responsibilities:

  • geochemical process simulations to assess the suitability of potential host rocks for the disposal of highly radioactive waste in Germany (position 1)
  • quantification and evaluation of hydrochemical processes when using opencast mining lakes to store renewable excess energy (position 2)
  • Implementation of coupled numerical simulations to evaluate possible environmental impacts (e.g. due to radionuclides or pyrite oxidation)
  • performance and evaluation of scenario analyses
  • further development of existing, coupled modelling approaches to quantify the prevailing hydrogeochemical processes and possible process interactions
  • presentation and publication of own research results
  • scientific and content-related support for ongoing research projects within the scope of the area of ​​responsibility
  • conducting courses at the Institute of Geosciences within the framework of the PhD regulations of the University of Potsdam


  • Master of Science (M.Sc.) with a geoscientific focus and specialization in hydrogeology and / or hydrogeochemistry
  • basic knowledge about numerical modelling of groundwater flow, species transport and geochemical reactions within groundwater
  • basic programming skills (e.g. Python)
  • distinct affinity for the use of numerical simulation programs for solving of scientific questions
  • ability to cooperate in interdisciplinary and multi cultural working groups

Start date: 1st July 2021
Fixed-term: 3 years
Salary: This position has been assessed as being salary group 13 according to “TVöD Bund (Tarifgebiet Ost)”. The salary group will be determined by the conditions of the collective wage agreement and the appropriate personal qualifications.
Working hours: part-time 75% (currently 29.25 h/week)
Place of work: Potsdam

What we offer:

  • ambitious and varied tasks in a dynamic and international research environment
  • state-of-the-art equipment
  • public service benefits
  • extensive training opportunities
  • professional career advice offered by our in-house Career-Centre
  • flexible working hours and conditions
  • support with finding a good work-life balance offered by benefit@work
  • institute day-care centre on site
  • in walking distance of Potsdam main station, or just a short ride on the shuttle bus

Did we pique your interest?

If so, we are looking forward to receiving your application by the 31st May 2021. Please use our online application form only.
Equal opportunities are an integral part of our personnel policy. We therefore very much welcome applications from qualified women. In the case of equal aptitude, severely disabled persons are given preferential consideration in accordance with the Code of Social Law IX.
Your personal data will be treated in line with Art. 6 (1b) and Art. 88 GDPR in conjunction with § 26 BbgDSG during the selection process. After the selection process has been concluded, your application documents will be deleted, in line with data protection regulation. 
In case of any further queries relating to the role’s responsibilities, please contact Ms. Jenny Meistring on +49 (0) 331-288-1581. If you have any general questions about the application process, please contact Ms. Buge on +49 (0) 331-288-28787.


Franca Buge
Franca Buge
Human Resources
Building G, Room 429
14473 Potsdam
+49 331 288-28787

Für Fragen zur Gleichstellung steht Ihnen die Gleichstellungsbeauftragte des GFZ, Frau Dr. Weckmann unter Tel. +49 331 288-2824 bzw. per E-Mail zur Verfügung.

Fragen zur Mitarbeit schwerhinderter Personen beantwortet gerne die Schwerbindertenvertreterin des GFZ, Frau Thiel unter Tel. +49 331 288-1648 bzw. per E-Mail.