PhD position Thirlmere Lakes

Employer UNSW - Connected Waters
Location Sydney, NSW, Australia
Employer website

Job Description

Combining natural heat tracer with high resolution environmental time series data to quantify groundwater flow and hydraulic conductivity

Project: Temperature fluctuations in surface water and river and lake beds are routinely used to calculate water fluxes in underlying sediments, such as the quantification of groundwater recharge or discharge. This heat tracing method is now well established to determine groundwater-surface water interactions. However, its application can still be refined by better defining its limitations at different environmental and climatic settings. The validity of heat tracing techniques can greatly be improved by combining their interpretation with other physical (e.g. electric conductivity, hydraulic head) and chemical data (e.g. CO2, Methane or Radon).
This PhD project will consist of a combination of practical and theoretical method development, fieldwork in several streams and lakes sites across New South Wales, Australia, data processing, model development and interpretation and reporting in journal papers. The project will be hosted within the Connected Waters Initiative Research Centre (CWI) at the University of New South Wales (UNSW).

Role: The successful applicant will be working as part of a broader team that includes researchers from the UNSW Water Research Laboratory and the CWI. The project involves both practical as well as theoretical tasks. This may include the custom design and deployment of field tools to measure surface water groundwater interactions in lake and stream systems or the development of novel models to quantify this interaction processes.

Pre-requisites: The successful candidate should have a 1st class Honours (or equivalent) degree in either Engineering or Science. Strong mathematical skills are essential. A foundation in water science, a sound knowledge of physical hydrogeology and environmental modelling is desirable.

To be considered for this position, the candidate must have a self-assessment outcome indicating eligibility for an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Scholarship using UNSW’s online tool ( The successful candidate should be willing to participate in fieldwork.

Stipend and application procedure: The 3.5 year PhD scholarship will provide an annual stipend of $26,682 plus a scholarship top-up of $5,000 per year. Interested applicants should send their CV, self-assessment result and a short letter highlighting their research background and interest in this area to Dr Martin S Andersen ( Eligible applicants will be asked to submit an application for a RTP scholarship by the appropriate deadline.

Application Closing: 30 Nov 2018

Contact Details
Martin Andersen

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