Job advertisement PhD in thermodynamical analysis of critical freezing levels, combining field observations and modelling of microclimatic conditions

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European Geosciences Union

PhD in thermodynamical analysis of critical freezing levels, combining field observations and modelling of microclimatic conditions

PhD in thermodynamical analysis of critical freezing levels, combining field observations and modelling of microclimatic conditions

Delft University of Technology logo

Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) is a multifaceted institution offering education and carrying out research in the technical sciences at an internationally recognised level. Education, research and design are strongly oriented towards applicability. TU Delft develops technologies for future generations, focusing on sustainability, safety and economic vitality. At TU Delft you will work in an environment where technical sciences and society converge. TU Delft comprises eight faculties, unique laboratories, research institutes and schools.
Delft University of Technology is a leading Dutch University that was recently ranked first in the world on the Shanghai list for ‘Water Resources’. The Department of Water Management from the faculty of Civil Engineering an Geosciences (check and focuses on wide range of issues across the full water cycle. The Waterresources research group provides education and research in all aspects of water resources management. A large part of the research is conducted with societal and business partners involved and in close collaboration with international research institutes. The research group has a strong profile in interdisciplinary collaboration with atmospheric sciences, applied mathematics and electrical engineering. The department currently has 30 FTE academics and over 100 PhD candidates and postdocs.


Delft, Netherlands


Relevant divisions
Atmospheric Sciences (AS)
Hydrological Sciences (HS)


Entry level

30000 - 34981 € / Year, Fixed term contract 4 years. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities

Required education

Application deadline
17 April 2020

17 March 2020

Job description

The main task of the candidate in this ‘Clarity on Fruitfrost’ project will be to identify critical temperatures for initiation of freezing and freezing resistance in fruit orchards. The idea is to combine physical understanding, modelled conceptually, with field observations at the micro-scale to predict microclimatic variability and effects on plant physiology.
Innovative observation techniques will be used to measure 3D-temperature profiles using optical cables (Distributed Temperature Sensing), thermal cameras and a network of miniature, autonomous temperature sensors. Various frost mitigation measures such as wind machines and sprinkling will be tested in the field to quantify their effectiveness and develop recommendations for optimising these measures.
The PhD candidate will closely collaborate with a second PhD candidate who will focus on LES (Large Eddy Simulation) modelling, to reproduce microclimatic variability and explore scenarios over a range of microclimate conditions and for optimisation of the mitigation measures.The PhD position is part of a research project funded by NWO, “Clarity on Fruitfrost”. Apart from the 2 PhD positions mentioned above, a 3rd PhD position is funded by this project that will focus on the development of innovative, autonomous micro-sensors for field deployment.

We are looking for a candidate with an MSc degree in Applied or Environmental Physics or a related science field, with affinity for experimental field work and instrumentation.
The candidate is expected to publish her/his research in scientific journals and conferences and should be capable of performing independent research and working in a team on research projects. The researcher should have an open personality and good English language skills to closely cooperate with colleagues and students.

How to apply

To apply, please e-mail a detailed CV, proof of English language proficiency, abstract of your MSc thesis (1 page), 3 names of referees along with a letter of motivation in a single PDF file called ‘CiTG20.28_YourLastname.pdf’ by 16 April 2020 to
For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Marie-Claire ten Veldhuis (