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Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) in Machine Learning for Atmospheric Science

   School of Science, Department of Applied Physics

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  Prof Patrick Rinke  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Aalto University is a community of bold thinkers where science and art meet technology and business. We are committed to identifying and solving grand societal challenges and building an innovative future. Aalto has six schools with nearly 11 000 students and a staff of more than 4000, of which 400 are professors. Our main campus is located in Espoo, Finland. Diversity is part of who we are, and we actively work to ensure our community’s diversity and inclusiveness in the future as well. This is why we warmly encourage qualified candidates from all backgrounds to join our community.

The Department of Applied Physics is now looking for a

Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) in Machine Learning for Atmospheric Science

We are looking for a PhD student to join the Computational Electronic Structure Theory (CEST) group at the Department of Applied Physics at Aalto University. In this position, you will have a chance to make an impact in atmospheric science by applying tools from artificial intelligence to molecular modelling of aerosol chemistry. Your project will be a part of the recently founded Center of Excellence in Reseach on Atmospheric Science, VILMA (funded by the Academy of Finland in the period 2022-2029). Our long-term objective is to understand molecular aggregation processes in the atmosphere and how they affect air quality and climate change.

Your role and goals

You will develop and implement machine learning approaches to predict molecular clustering behavior of atmospheric compounds. As a member of VILMA, you will collaborate with experimentalists, theoreticians and computer scientists. You will combine computational and experimental chemical data, devise molecular descriptors, develop active learning workflows alongside data analytics tools and run artificial intelligence algorithms in high-performance computing environments. You will have the opportunity to build datasets of molecular properties computed using quantum chemistry codes.

Your experience and ambitions

We welcome candidates with a master’s degree in chemistry, physics or computer science who are curious about applied machine learning in the natural sciences. We seek colleagues who enjoy coding, scripting and analytics, and who are keen to push the boundaries of machine learning and artificial intelligence. This project requires creative thinking and programming. Candidates benefit from a broad understanding of computational science and atmospheric chemistry. Prior machine learning experience is a merit but not a requirement. We further appreciate willingness to travel, collaborate and communicate science.

What we offer

In the Computational Electronic Structure Theory (CEST) group, led by Prof. Patrick Rinke, we advance electronic structure theory and machine learning to pursue innovative applications towards future technologies and sustainability. We are a multi-cultural and cross-disciplinary team, with complementary subgroups and talents. You will train in machine learning applications with experienced developers, meet our global network of collaborators, join us at scientific meetings, help us organize research workshops and get involved in academic and diversity outreach. In combination with the academic development courses at Aalto University, we will help you grow a competitive and international career profile. You will also be part of the VILMA Center of Excellence in Atmospheric Science and the Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence (FCAI) and join a vibrant community at the crossroads of artificial intelligence, physics, chemistry and atmospheric science research.

Following the standard practice in the Department of Applied Physics, the contract will be made initially for two years, then extended to another two years after a successful mid-term progress review. The total duration of Ph.D. studies is four years. The annual workload of research and teaching staff at Aalto University is currently 1612 hours. Aalto University follows the salary system of Finnish universities. The starting salary of a PhD student is approximately 2600 €/month (gross), and it increases as you progress in your research and studies. The contract includes Aalto University occupational healthcare. The primary workplace will be the Otaniemi Campus at Aalto University, located in the coastal city of Espoo, Finland (part of the Greater Helsinki metropolitan area).

Ready to apply?

To apply for the position, please submit your application including the attachments mentioned below as one single PDF document in English through our online recruitment system by using the link on Aalto University’s web page ("Apply Now”) here: Doctoral Researcher in Machine Learning for Atmospheric Science | Aalto University

(1)  Letter of motivation

(2)  CV including list of publications

(3)  Degree certificates and academic transcripts

(4)  Contact details of at least two referees (or letters of recommendation, if already available) 

The deadline for applications is December 16, 2022. The position will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate is identified. For additional information, kindly contact Prof. Patrick Rinke. Aalto University reserves the right for justified reasons to leave the position open, to extend the application period, reopen the application process, and to consider candidates who have not submitted applications during the application period.

About Finland

Finland is a great place for living with or without family – it is a safe, politically stable and well-organized Nordic society. Finland is consistently ranked high in quality of life and was just listed again as the happiest country in the world: For more information about living in Finland:

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