Postdoc/Research engineer in water isotope modelling in the NEMO ocean model

Durée 18 mois
Laboratoire hôte 1474162
Grade/Niveau Postdoc/Research engineer
Début du contrat Hiver/Printemps 2022
Rémunération Selon type de poste/expérience
Date limite de candidature 19/12/2021


The position is mainly based at the Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement (LSCE) on the Orme des Merisiers site on the Saclay plateau. Frequent visits to the Laboratoire d’Océanographie et du Climat: Expérimentations et Approches Numériques (LOCEAN) on the Jussieu campus in Paris are to be expected.

Mission : Water isotopes (Oxygen 18, Deuterium) in the ocean/atmosphere/biosphere/cryosphere serve as a powerful hydrologic tracer and as an essential proxy to interpret paleoclimatic changes across time scales. They constitute an essential tool to compare field data observations with model simulations as significant advances have been made in earth system models (ESMs) in the last decades to simulate the complete cycle of water isotopes. Although they are or have once been implemented separately in all components (atmosphere, ocean and vegetation/land surface) of the IPSL ESM, a fully-coupled, isotope-enabled version of the IPSL ESM is still lacking.

To overcome this issue, the IPSL is funding an 18-month research engineer position to implement water isotopes in the latest version of the NEMO model, as part of a bigger initiative to perennially include water isotopes in each component of the IPSL ESM as well as develop a fully-coupled, isotope-enabled version of the ESM. The position may be renewable contingent upon satisfactory performance and funding.


Implement stable water isotopes in the latest version of the NEMO ocean model. This main task consists in implementing the transfer of water isotopes from NEMO_v3.6 to NEMO_v4, with special attention dedicated to isotopic conservation, at the global scale but also, for instance, at the ocean/ice and sea ice interfaces or in the vicinity of large rivers.

– Couple the isotope-enabled version of NEMO to the isotope-enabled version of the LMDZ atmosphere model in order to create an essential block of the fully coupled, isotope-enabled, IPSL earth system model.

– Contribute to developing solutions to ensure perennial maintenance of the isotope-enabled version of NEMO

– Confront and validate model results against modern water isotope measurements in the ocean and the atmosphere.

– Collaborate with experts on isotopes, NEMO and LDMZ at LSCE and LOCEAN, but also with scientists from the broader NEMO consortium. The candidate will primarily be based at LSCE and frequent visits to LOCEAN will be necessary to ensure appropriate progress. Close interactions with scientists from different IPSL thematic structures will also be pivotal.

Compétences requises

PhD or equivalent in earth system sciences or engineering degree in computer sciences

Experience in numerical modelling is necessary; experience with earth system models is desirable

Good programming skills

Knowledge of numerical conservation schemes is an asset

Knowledge of MPI/OpenMP programming is an asset

Knowledge of the NEMO model is an asset

Knowledge of the water isotope cycle in the atmosphere/ocean is an asset

Good communication and teamworking skills to ensure appropriate interactions with the different labs are essential.