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PhD scholarship - Cross-borehole ground penetrating radar

PhD fellow in Cross-borehole ground penetrating radar
Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management
Faculty of Science
University of Copenhagen

Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Faculty of Science at University of Copenhagen is offering a PhD scholarship in Geological characterization of clayey till using cross-borehole ground penetrating radar commencing August 1, 2017 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Description of the scientific environment
The project involves scientist from three institutions, the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, the Natural History Museum of Denmark, and Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS). The successful PhD candidate will therefore be part of a multidisciplinary team.

Project description
Approximately 40% of Denmark is covered by clayey till. Knowledge of the water flow and transport pathways through these glacial deposits is necessary in order to sustainably exploit and protect our water resources. In clayey till, the presence of macropores dominates the transport pathways as they create a three-dimensional network of pathways that enable a much faster water and contaminant transport than through the surrounding fine-grained diffusion-limited clay matrix. These macropores exist as fractures, biopores from burrows and roots, as well as sand lenses. The macropores are non-trivial to map and at present a low-cost non-invasive technique for mapping such networks does not exist. The objective of this project is to use a minimal-invasive geophysical method, i.e. cross-borehole ground penetrating radar, to characterize macropores in clayey till at four sites representing different clay till environments. We will further investigate whether the macropore distribution can be related to depositional environment. This knowledge can be used to create a national map with areas of high groundwater vulnerability, i.e. by identifying macropore-dominated-flow areas.

Principal supervisor is Associate Professor Majken C. Looms Zibar, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, University of Copenhagen, E-mail:, Ph: +45 35322444.

Background of successful candidate
We invite candidates from different scientific fields to apply; geology, geophysics, engineering, or environmental sciences. The ideal candidate should have a solid background in mathematical analysis, inversion methods, and working with large data sets. An interest in geological processes and conducting field work is also highly desirable. Furthermore, the candidate must have excellent personal skills and be able to work in a multidisciplinary team.

Job description
The position is available for a 3-year period and your key tasks as a PhD student at SCIENCE are:

•To manage and carry through your research project
•Attend PhD courses
•Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
•Teach and disseminate your research
•To stay at an external research institution for a few months, preferably abroad
•Work for the department

Formal requirements
Applicants should hold an MSc degree in one of the above mentioned disciplines with good results and good English skills. As criteria for the assessment of your qualifications emphasis will also be laid on previous publications (if any) and relevant work experience.

Terms of employment
The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 309,109 including annual supplement (+ pension up to DKK 42,699). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

Integrated MSc and PhD Scheme
The position is also available for candidates who are (or are eligible to be) enrolled at one of the faculty’s master programmes in one of the above mentioned disciplines. The duration of the integrated programme depends on the amount of credits that you have passed on your MSc programme. For further information about the study programme please see:, “Study Structures”.
Scholarship and terms of employment for integrated MSc and PhD
PhD grant portions (Ph.D.‐SU klip).
In the period up to the completion of the MSc programme (up to three years), the student is entitled to so-called PhD grant portions. The grant portions are financed by the grant donor but not by the Danish State Educational Grant and Loan Scheme Agency (as is the case for the ordinary study grant portions on the BSc and MSc programmes). They are called PhD grant portions because this kind of remuneration is regulated and described in the Executive Order on the State Educational Grant and Loan Scheme in Denmark (SU‐bekendtgørelsen), and because the value of a PhD grant portion corresponds to the value of an ordinary Danish study grant portion. Students are awarded 48 PhD grant portions during the period of their MSc and PhD studies.
48 PhD grant portions at DKK 5,839 each, corresponding to DKK 280,272.

'Duty work'
As a supplement to the PhD grant portions, the student may, in accordance with the collective agreement of the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC), be offered 'duty work'. In the period up to the completion of the MSc programme, students performing 'duty work' are paid by the hour. UCPH has decided to offer students on integrated MSc and PhD schemes 150 hours of 'duty work' per year during Part A of the programme (until two years of the combined programme of study remain). 'Duty work' during Part A if it has a duration of three years: 450 hours at a rate of DKK 202.64 (+ 12.5% holiday pay), corresponding to DKK 102,586.50.
For further information about Part A please see:

Salary in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC).
In the period after the completion of the MSc programme, the student is employed as a PhD scholar and is remunerated in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The scheme is arranged in such a way that students graduate from the MSc programme at a time when there are two years left of the integrated programme. For this reason, the salary must be paid for a period of two years in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The amounts specified include a supplement locally agreed upon as well as pension contributions: Salary as a PhD scholar: 24 months at a rate of DKK 28,955.15 (including pension contributions and supplement), corresponding to DKK 694,923.

Application Procedure
The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include
•Cover Letter, stating your motivation and background for applying for the specific PhD project.
•Diploma and transcripts of records (BSc and MSc)
•Acceptance Letter for the relevant MSc Programme at SCIENCE, if any
•Other information for consideration, e.g. list of publications (if any),
•Full contact details (Name, address, telephone & email) of 1-3 professional referees

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The deadline for applications is May 14, 2017, 23:59 GMT +1. Applications received after the deadline for applications will not be considered.

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee. Afterwards an assessment committee will be appointed to evaluate the selected applications. The applicants will be notified of the composition of the committee and the final selection of a successful candidate will be made by the Head of Department, based on the recommendations of the assessment committee and the interview committee.
The main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant and the above mentioned skills. The successful candidate will then be requested to formally apply for enrolment as a PhD student at the PhD school of Science. You can read more about the recruitment process at

For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor.

General information about PhD programmes at SCIENCE is available at


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Majken Looms Zibar


Application deadline: 14-05-2017
Employment type: Limited period
Department/Location: Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management

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