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Sediment flux in and around the Sør Rondans Mountains in East Antarctica (RDF19/EE/GES/WINTER)

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  • Full or part time
    Dr K Winter
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Sediments in glacial systems can alter frictional stress at the glacier bed, modify ice flow speeds and change ice flow direction through long-term erosive processes. Glacial systems can also transfer these sediments, which are potentially rich in essential nutrients like silica and iron, from continental sediments to oceanic sinks. As ice sheets thin in response to climate change, it is hypothesised that de-stabilised rock walls could increase sediment production and delivery in Antarctica. This could seed plankton blooms and enhance atmospheric CO2 drawdown in the Southern Ocean. Whilst recent work by the supervisory team and collaborators has improved understanding of the significance of sediment entrainment, transfer and deposition in some of Earth’s largest glacial systems, the quantification of subaerial and subsurface sediment volumes and observations of englacial sediments in large ice sheets remain rare.

This research project will use an exciting combination of field monitoring techniques including terrestrial laser scanning, structure-from-motion photogrammetry and ground penetrating radar to quantify extraglacial and subglacial sediment fluxes in and around the Sør Rondans Mountains in East Antarctica to provide the first empirically derived sediment flux estimates for Antarctica. Full training for each monitoring technique will be provided.

Funding may be available for fieldwork in East Antarctica during the austral summer 2019/2020 field season.

The successful candidate will be supervised by staff in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences (Faculty of Engineering and Environment) and will be aligned to the Cold and Palaeo-Environment Research Group ( and the Extreme Environments Multidisciplinary Research Theme (

The principal supervisor for this project is Kate Winter.

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.

For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see

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. RDF19/EE/GES/WINTER) will not be considered.

Deadline for applications: Friday 25 January 2019
Start Date: 1 October 2019

Northumbria University is an equal opportunities provider and in welcoming applications for studentships from all sectors of the community we strongly encourage applications from women and under-represented groups.

Funding Notes

The studentship is available to Students Worldwide, and covers full fees and a full stipend, paid for three years at RCUK rates (for 2018/19, this is £14,777 pa).

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