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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 4.8 Geoenergy (department “Geosystems”), we are looking for a:

PhD student position in Geological Storage (f_m_x)

Reference Number 6336

The Helmholtz Sustainability Challenge (HSC) aims at developing and demonstrating practical examples of sustainable value chains to obtain improved resource and energy use by a combination of technical progress, economic, ecological, and societal innovations. For our new HSC project ¢A Comprehensive Approach to Harnessing the Innovation Potential of Direct Air Capture and Storage for Reaching CO2-Neutrality – DACStorE¢ we are seeking a highly motivated and enthusiastic scientist who wants to work on the assessment of geological underground storage potential and the investigation of selected case studies where a large-scale CO2 direct air capture (DAC) with permanent underground storage will be applicable. The successful candidate will contribute with skills in geology and applied geosciences to the interdisciplinary concept of DACStorE that links a variety of different methodological approaches. The candidate’s geoscientific work to identify optimal CO2 storage sites is linked with the project partner’s competencies in technologies for capturing CO2, modelling of air and atmosphere, techno-economic system analyses, and societal and legal aspects of the DAC technology.

Your responsibilities:

  • Assessment of geological storage potential for permanent CO2 storage from DAC, based on existing data bases
  • Determination of prioritized parameters for the storage potential assessment in coordination with the applied economic models of the project
  •  Development of specific CO2 storage scenarios to evaluate the suitability of selected storage locations for an industrial DAC application
  • Study of geospatial heuristic methods (e.g. graph algorithms) to create efficient CO2 source-sink networks as interface for contributing to the techno-economic analysis of the project partners
  • Participating in the project’s own graduate school, presentation of results at national and international conferences and publication in peer-reviewed journals

Your qualifications:

  • Master’s degree (or equivalent) preferably in Geosciences, Environmental Sciences or related fields
  • Experience in geological underground processes, conceptual modelling, knowledge in data bases and ArcGIS/QGIS data treatment and interpretation
  • Practical experience in programming (e.g. Python or MatLab)
  • Basic knowledge on Machine Learning (ML) algorithms
  • Knowledge in graph optimization methods and/or reservoir modelling would be an asset
  • Excellent communication skills and ability to work in an interdisciplinary team

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
  • Working at the Albert Einstein science park on the Telegrafenberg in Potsdam
  • Work place within walking distance of Potsdam main train station, or just a short ride on the shuttle bus

Start date: As soon as possible
Fixed-term: 3 years
Salary: The position is classed as salary group 13 according to “TVöD Bund (Tarifgebiet Ost)”. The salary group is determined on the basis of the Collective Wage Agreement and the respective personal qualifications.
Working hours: Part-time 75% (currently 29.25 h/week)
Place of work: Potsdam

Have we piqued your interest?

If so, we look forward to receiving your application by 13th September 2022. Please use our online application form only.

Diversity and equal opportunities are integral components of our human resources policy. The GFZ actively promotes diversity and explicitly welcomes applications from all qualified individuals, regardless of ethnic and social origin, nationality, gender, sexual orientation and identity, religion/belief, age and physical characteristics. Anyone who has been recognized as severely disabled, will be given preferential consideration in the event of equal suitability and qualification in accordance with the provisions of the German Social Code IX. If you have any questions, please contact our representative for the severely disabled at sbv[at]gfz-potsdam.de, who will be happy to assist you in the further application process. In case of further queries regarding gender equality, please do not hesitate to contact our Equal Opportunities Officer at gba[at]gfz-potsdam.de.

Your personal data will be processed for the purpose of conducting the selection procedure on the basis of Art. 6 para. 1 b, Art. 88 GDPR in conjunction with Art. 26 of the Data Protection Act for the State of Brandenburg. After completion of the procedure, application documents will be deleted in compliance with data protection regulations.

If you have any general questions about the application process, please contact Ms Buge under +49 (0)331-288-28787.

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