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   Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

An opportunity has arisen to investigate the behaviour of legacy particles within the marine environment of the Pentland Firth. The successful candidate will undertake hydrodynamic modelling to understand how particles of varying compositions move under the combined forces of currents and waves.

Using state of the art computing facility and with easy access to the site at Dounreay, this study will contribute to critical work by Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) to address the legacy of radioactive particles that periodically wash up on beaches next to the site.

DSRL is funding this research through the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI-North Highland) as part of important work to close Dounreay and future-proof environmental planning.

Nuclear fuel was reprocessed at the site for almost 40 years. Metallic fragments, a product of post Irradiation Experimentation operations, entered the site’s drainage system and were discharged to the sea. It is the behaviour of these residual metallic fragments which forms the basis of this study.

The successful applicant will be based at the Environmental Research Institute (ERI), UHI -North Highland, Thurso, in the north of Scotland, and will have regular on-site visits to DSRL at Dounreay. As such any offer will be subject to the candidate first obtaining DSRL site security clearance. The PhD is a joint project between Dounreay DSRL and UHI- North Highland UHI, benefitting from Industrial support from DRSL.

The successful applicant should be UK- based with the right to work in the UK to facilitate the BPSS security clearance process. However, European Union applicants who have the right to work in the UK without restriction will also be considered. Candidates should preferably have an MSc in an Oceanography- related discipline and /or experience with hydrodynamic modelling.

This is a 4- year fully funded position with access to high powered computing facility and working alongside a multi-disciplinary team of environmental scientists. The intention is that training in modelling software will be made available to the right candidate as well as the opportunity to undertake a fieldwork campaign.

The four-year funded project covers:

  • All UK tuition fees
  • Monthly stipend of £1300.75 per month
  • Funding for field research/training

To apply please supply your CV to:


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