We are searching for an outstanding candidate with a strong interest in geochemistry, volcanology and environmental chemistry to cover a Post-doctoral position at the Earth System Science research group of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (https://we.vub.ac.be/~essc/). The Post-doc position is fully funded for a period of 2 year by a VUB Strategic Research Program Grant under the leadership of Philippe Claeys. The position will be jointly supervised by a volcanologist (Prof. M. Kervyn) and environmental chemists (Prof. M. Elskens, Prof. Yue Gao).
Volcanic tephra and aerosols are significant sources of fine particles in the atmosphere through direct fallout or later remobilization. Volcanic eruption and products affect the chemistry of surface and groundwater, through various processes acting at different time scales. This project aims at characterizing the chemistry of water in highly alkaline volcanic rocks of the African Rift, with specific attention for halogens (not only fluor), alkaline and alkaline earth metals, and specific trace metals. Fine dust and ash particles in the air will also be sampled and characterized for their grain size and chemical properties. After a first characterization of the samples collected in different environmental contexts, specific sampling and data exploitation strategies (including the deployment of DGT passive samplers) will be implemented for systematic data collection, determination of concentrations and fluxes of pollutants into the environment. A significant level of freedom exists to eventually focus the research on the specific interests of the researcher. The research results will contribute to assess the potential health risk for populations living and exploiting water resources in alkaline volcanic areas.
We offer a two years post-doc grant supported by a VUB Strategic Research Program. The salary will follow the scale for post-doc fellowships. The research will benefit from well-equipped analytical laboratories including Sector Field Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry, X-Ray Fluorescence and Infra-Red Spectroscopy The field work will take place mainly in the North Tanzanian Volcanic Zone (Oldoinyo Lengai, Meru volcanoes) in collaboration with Tanzanian partners. The selected researcher will interact with, and contribute to the supervision, of several PhD students. It is expected that the selected researcher dedicates time to apply for additional funding to support extension of the project. The selected researcher would start at the latest by April 2018.
Please submit a detailed CV, list of publications, a motivation letter highlighting your research motivation and two reference letters to Prof. Matthieu Kervyn (email@example.com) and Prof. Marc Elskens (firstname.lastname@example.org). Deadline for application is January 26, 2018.
You are a highly motivated researcher with a PhD degree in geochemistry, environmental chemistry, volcanology or related disciplines. You have extensive experience in analytical techniques to determine the chemical properties of water or solid particles, including stable isotopes and trace metal analyses. You have a very good command of English and are able to present your research both orally and in written reports. Your track record demonstrates experience in publishing high level scientific research. You are willing to develop an innovative and interdisciplinary research project in collaboration with environmental chemists and volcanologists. You can manage projects independently, take initiatives, and meet deadlines. You have experience in field work and different sample collection techniques. You are willing to get involved in the supervision of student research projects at Master and/or PhD level.
Candidates who obtained their PhD outside Belgium and who have not worked for more than 2 years in Belgium are eligible for a fellowship program and will be considered in priority.