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ONE Planet DTP - Glacial Impacts on Global Chemical Cycling and Climate Feedbacks (Ref: OP202021)

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, January 31, 2020
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

The project aims to understand the impact of subglacial geochemical processes on global chemical cycling and how these impacts will change in an increasingly deglaciating world. Past research has identified large chemical fluxes emerging at glacial termini and in the subglacial environments of large ice bodies. However, questions remain regarding the degree to which the chemical activity beneath glaciers is driven by atmospheric CO2 drawdown or by oxidation of sulfur and organic matter, which have opposing effects for global geochemical cycling. Contrasting the subglacial environment to deglaciated proglacial forelands is also a subject of interest.
Research will focus on glaciated volcanic islands, newly emerging lands which are hotspots of chemical weathering. Fieldwork is likely to be on Iceland and Jan Mayen. Water, sediment, and sediment-bearing ice will be collected from glaciers and ice caps at both sites. Analyses will focus on the chemistry and mineralogy of these samples, as relevant to determining the underlying chemical pathways active in the subglacial system. The doctoral student will have broad freedom to develop a plan for analysis including employing a range of stable or radioisotopes. Of particular interest are the isotopic constituents of dissolved inorganic carbon, glacial ice, and newly formed minerals such carbonates and clays.
The project will train the doctoral student in a wide range of field and analytical skills relating the geochemical analysis of rock, sediment, and water. It will be connected with ongoing research in Greenland and Antarctica led by supervisor Graly and will include collaborations with international colleagues. Upon completion, the student will be qualified to pursue an academic career employing chemical and isotopic methods to analyse earth system feedbacks or to pursue a range of industry or government positions (e.g. energy, environmental) that depend on the analysis of geochemical or mineralogical data.

Degree in geology, physical geography, or other relevant fields. Previous coursework or research experience in mineralogy, geochemistry, and/or isotopes is strongly recommended. Previous field experience in an academic or industry setting is desirable. As field work will likely be in remote arctic sites, mountaineering training or experience is desirable.
For more information, please contact Joseph Graly ().

Eligibility and How to Apply:
Please note eligibility requirement:
• Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
• Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
• Applicants cannot apply for this funding if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.

Please note: Applications that do not include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words (not a copy of the advert), or that do not include the advert reference (e.g. OP.....) will not be considered.

Northumbria University takes pride in, and values, the quality and diversity of our staff. We welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award in recognition of our commitment to improving employment practices for the advancement of gender equality.

Funding Notes

We have a minimum of 12 (3.5 year) PhD fully funded studentship awards available for October 2020 entry. Each award includes fees (Home / EU), an annual living allowance (for 2019/20 this is £15,009) and a Research Training Support Grant (for travel, consumables, as required).

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