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Research Scientist

The application process for this position has now CLOSED.

                Alexandra, New Zealand 
Term:                       3 year fixed term with a likelihood of extension 
Start date:              1 July 2015, or earlier by arrangement 
Remuneration:      NZ$60,000/year to NZ$90,000/year depending on experience 

Please note: This position is being re-advertised. If you previously applied for this position and were unsuccessful, please do not apply again.

Bodeker Scientific is a not-for-profit research company with expertise in atmospheric and climate research. The company conducts original scientific research through contracts held with both national funding agencies and a number of international organisations. The company operates as a federation of largely independent researchers who collaboratively work on shared contracts under a commonly agreed company constitution. We focus on conducting high quality research within the time and financial constraints imposed by our research contracts. To achieve this goal, decision making within the company is participatory with an emphasis on personal responsibility.

Recently, Bodeker Scientific has been successful in obtaining funding through the New Zealand Marsden fund to use location information from balloons being flown by Google[x]’s Project Loon1. The collected balloon location information will be used to diagnose the processes affecting the permeability of the Antarctic vortex2. The successful applicant will spend the majority of their time working with the team (including a full-time PhD student) on this Marsden-funded Loon project3.

The project work packages include:
  1. Establishing a database of Loon location information tailored to meet the specific needs of the Marsden-funded project as well as the needs of the international stratospheric research community, 
  2. Using the Loon location information to assess the quality of the latest generation of reanalysis data sets over southern middle and high latitudes, 
  3. Evaluating Loon atmospheric temperature measurements through comparisons with satellite-based radio occultation measurements and from radiosonde flights made from GCOS (Global Climate Observing System) Reference Upper Air Network (GRUAN) sites. 
  4. Determining how vortex permeability changes with season and from year to year using a large ensemble of trajectories calculated from wind fields obtained from reanalyses. 
  5. Investigating chaotic mixing in the stratosphere by analysing data from earlier long-duration stratospheric balloon flights made over Antarctica as well as the more comprehensive Loon data set. 
  6. Investigating sub-grid-scale processes in the stratosphere by conducting simulations with a regional climate model nested within a global model to compare trajectories driven only by the global model wind field against trajectories driven by winds in the high-resolution domain. 
  7. Assessing the performance of the new ENDGame dynamical core of the UK MetOffice Unified Model and the extent to which the use of ENDGame improves the representation of the permeability of the Antarctic vortex in the model. 
There are other projects under way and in development at Bodeker Scientific, not described above, in which the successful candidate can choose to participate.

Our hope is that this vacancy will be taken up by a mid-career scientist with a strong publication record and an interest in leadership in Bodeker Scientific. However, an early-career researcher with strong expertise in stratospheric dynamics and a relevant publication record could also be considered.

We are looking for a person exhibiting a strong mix of the following skills/expertise:

Essential Skills:
  1. Experience in stratospheric dynamics 
  2. Experience in atmospheric physics. 
  3. Years of experience in programming e.g. in C++, Delphi/pascal, python, matlab or IDL. 
  4. A demonstrated ability to think creatively. 
Preferred Skills:
  1. Well-developed writing skills. 
  2. Ability to work collaboratively in a team. 
  3. Agile i.e. able to juggle a number of tasks with varying priorities. 
  4. An imaginative approach to scientific research. 
  5. A track record of leadership. 
  6. Climate modelling. 
  7. Data analysis. 
Primary responsibilities of the successful applicant, depending on their expertise, experience and skills, will include, but are not limited to:
  1. Leading current and potential future projects at Bodeker Scientific. 
  2. Contributing to business development opportunities, including leading the writing of funding proposals. 
  3. Writing software for data analysis, data display and data manipulation. 
  4. Running models and analysing model results. 
  5. Synthesising and writing up of research results for publication. 
  6. Writing achievement/client reports. 
While the term of employment is currently fixed at 3 years, the expectation is that, depending on the capabilities of the candidate, the term will be extended.

Bodeker Scientific is located in Alexandra, New Zealand, known for its relaxed lifestyle which provides excellent opportunities for outdoor pursuits including mountain biking, kayaking, cross-country skiing in winter, rock climbing etc. Alexandra has a population of approximately 4,800 people. It is in a central location, with easy access to popular locations such as Queenstown and Wanaka, and to the South Island’s second largest city, Dunedin.

Applications must be emailed to Emma Scarlet (emma@bodekerscientific.com) by the deadline of 10 April 2015. Please provide:
  1. A covering letter 
  2. A CV, which must include: 
    • Your strengths relating to the skill areas listed above 
    • The names of at least three referees.
For further information please email Greg Bodeker (greg@bodekerscientific.com). 

[1]  http://www.google.co.nz/loon/ 

[2]  Bodeker, G.E.; Struthers, H. and Connor, B.J., Dynamical containment of Antarctic ozone depletion, Geophys. Res. Lett., 29, 10.1029/2001GL014206, 2002.