Deadline: 2015-05-01

PhD Position in Planetary Seismology and Geodynamics

The aim of the research project is to work on the interior structure of Mars and the Moon using geophysical data. Investigating the seismic response of Mars in anticipation of the upcoming Mars Insight mission will form a core part of the project. More specifically, the goal is to use present-day geophysical data to constrain a set of interior-structure models of Mars that will form the basis for computing the seismic response of Mars at the local, regional, and global scale. This will include waveform modelling computing body- and surface-wave arrivals, dispersion characteristics, normal modes, receiver functions, attenuation structure, and tidal response. The project is situated broadly in the domain of seismology and computational geophysics with the purpose of inverting geophysical data to constrain models of Mars and the Moon’s internal structure, and ultimately, origin, and evolution. For this purpose the large-scale geodynamical, geochemical, and petrological implications will be studied.

This part of the project will be undertaken in collaboration with researchers in other groups in the Institute (Geophysical Fluid Dynamics, Earth and Planetary Magnetism) and in the Institute of Geochemistry and Petrology at ETH.
The project comes in a timely fashion in preparation for the upcoming NASA-lead Mars InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) mission to be launched in March 2016 that will emplace a seismometer and a heat-flow probe on Mars. In this context mantle models obtained here will serve as input in the science preparation phase.

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A successful applicant will have, or expect to obtain by the start date, an MSc degree in geophysics, physics, applied mathematics, or similar and should have a strong background in mathematics and (geo)physics. We expect the candidate to have experience in programming
(e.g., Fortran, Matlab), be proficient in written and spoken English, and be motivated to work in an international and interdisciplinary team.

For further information please contact Dr. Amir Khan at (no application documents) or visit our website

We look forward to receiving your online application by May 1, 2015. Applications should be sent online (please use the button below) with attention to ETH Zurich, Ms. Maja Bugler, Human Resources, CH-8092 Zurich and should include 1) cover letter that describes research experience, scientific and professional/career goals; 2) academic transcripts/list of courses completed or ongoing, including grades/notes; 3) digital copy of MSc thesis; 5) names and addresses of two referees. Review of applications will start soon and continue until the position is filled.

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