22. februar 2021

PhD fellow in Ice Core Science

PhD fellow in Ice Core Science:

Title: Developing an instrument to make continuous observations of the crystal size on a 1 m polished surface of an ice core. The Department of, Physics of Ice Climate and Earth, Faculty of Science at University of Copenhagen is offering a PhD scholarship in Ice Core Science commencing 01.08.2021 or as soon as possible thereafter.


Description of the scientific environment

This Early-Stage Researcher (ESR, PhD student) position is part of EU HORIZON2020 funded framework of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN) DEEPICE. The ERC will be employed by and hosted at the Niels Bohr Institute, Univ. of Copenhagen.

Project description

The physical properties of ice crystals are strongly related to the flow and deformation of ice. This has been established by detection of crystal size and crystal orientation on 10 cm x 10 cm thin sections of ice through many of the deep ice cores. Preparation of ice samples and measurements are however very demanding and less than 1 % of the ice core can be observed. The aim of this project is to develop and tune a Large Area Scanning Microscope (LASM) should make it possible to have measurement over a whole ice core. This information is key for a deep ice core with a strong risk of fold and disturbances in the near basal ice. Here, we aim at using LASM to (1) get information with LASM on ice rheology and study how rheology influences the deformation properties of ice, (2) reconstruct folds and disturbances of the deep ice based on the LASM measurements, (3) align radio echo sounding layering in the ice near an ice core site and potentially get a 3D more holistic picture of basal disturbances. The company Sr&K will develop the microscope while UCPH will develop the ice core bench and the microtoming of the ice core before it enters the microscope setup for 1 m long ice cores. In addition software to extract the information on the image picture need to be developed in collaboration with UCPH and AWI. The instrument will be used on exisiting ice cores as well as the expected BEOI ice cores from Antarctica.


DEEPICE is a research and training network on understanding deep ice core proxies to infer past Antarctic climate dynamics. It is funded by the EU HORIZON2020 programme and consists of 10 academic partner organisations from 10 European countries plus 9 collaborating institutions from academia and industry. In total 15 early-stage researchers (PhD students) will be employed after a competitive recruitment process and work together within the European DEEPICE consortium.

Principal supervisor is D. Dahl Jensen (Univ. of Copenhagen, DK), A. Lamott (Schäfter & Kirchhoff GmbH, D)

Academic secondmentsAWI (D); Non-academic secondments: Schäfter & Kirchhoff GmbH (D)

Job description

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

  • To work independently, develop and carry through your research project
  • Attend PhD courses to learn additional skills
  • Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis with support from your supervisors.
  • Disseminate your research, participate in network related and international conferences and workshops
  • To stay at a partner research institution for at least six months to develop new skills
  • Contribute to the everyday activities at the department

Formal requirements

The candidate for this position can have any nationality but must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Denmark for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date. In addition, the successful candidate should satisfy at the time of the recruitment the following mandatory characteristics:

    • having not more than 4 years of equivalent research experience (i.e., working as researcher after obtaining your master’s degree)

    • having not been awarded a title of PhD.

For each of the early-stage researcher positions a recruitment panel adhering to strict gender equality and equal opportunity rules will be set up consisting of the two supervisors and a third DEEPICE representative. Selection criteria will encompass the potential as researchers, creativity, level of independence, teamwork ability, knowledge, and communication experience and availability for the intended start date. Start date of the positions can be as early as July 2021 but all positions must be filled by October 2021.

Applicants should hold an MSc degree in Physics or Geophysics  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.

Interested students are asked to submit their application including a letter of motivation with a statement of their research interests, a curriculum vitae, their academic credentials, abstracts of the MSc and BSc theses and contact details of two academic referees until 31st of March 2021

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 salary is currently at a minimum DKK 330,284 (approx. €44,000) including annual supplement (+ pension at a minimum DKK 53,674). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

In addition, a family allowance of €3,000 is possible.

Application Procedure

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

Interested students are asked to submit their application including a letter of motivation with a statement of their research interests, a curriculum vitae, their academic credentials, abstracts of the MSc and BSc theses and contact details of two academic referees until 31st of March 2021

Reference letters must be uploaded by the applicant him/herself. The recruiting person must NOT  obtain reference letters which content is not known to the applicant him/herself. This is against Danish law.

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 the 31th of March 2021, 23:59 GMT +2

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 https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/.

More information on the Ice and Climate research group at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen can be found at: https://www.iceandclimate.nbi.ku.dk/

More information about eligibility and employment conditions can be found at :



For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor [Professor, Dorthe Dahl Jensen, Niels Bohr Institute, ddj@nbi.ku.dkDirect Phone: +45 60635297].


General information about PhD programmes at SCIENCE is available at https://www.science.ku.dk/phd.


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.