Deadline 9.00 am,18th November 2002
Title: Postdoctoral Research Assistant
Purpose: To undertake research on stable isotopes in speleothems and
modelling of past variations in atmospheric 14C in relation to
paleoeclimate and calibration of the radiocarbon time-scale.
Staff Category: RA1A spine point 6. Fixed contract initially for 1
year, extendable to 3 years.
Salary: From £20,311 per annum
Duties and Responsibilities: We have previously developed a record of
past atmospheric 14C concentrations (d14C) spanning the interval 45-10
ka from a Bahamas speleothem (Beck et al (2001) Science 292,
2453-2458). The purpose of our current research is to improve
resolution and continuity of this record, and to confirm the timing and
magnitude of the dramatic shifts in D14C observed. The possible
association of changes in D14C with changes in the strength and
location of deep ocean ventilation (particularly NADW) will be
investigated by derivation of a subtropical climate proxy record (d13C,
d18O and trace element composition of calcite) for the same well-dated
speleothems. This work will be extended in this study by use of
carbon-cycle modelling to constrain possible rates, duration and
amplitude of climate and ocean change, and also potential geomagnetic
or cosmic ray flux events.
The post will involve the collection and numerical modelling of stable
isotope, 14C and 10Be records from speleothems.
Line Manager and Organisation: The research is funded by a Leverhulme
Trust grant to Professor Peter Smart in collaboration with Dr David
Richards (School of Geographical Sciences), Professor Chris
Hawkesworth (Earth Sciences), and will operate in parallel with an
existing NERC grant on this topic. Both departments were awarded 5*
grade in the recent UK Research Selectivity Exercise, and have state
of the art provision for mass spectrometry (UK Thermo Finnigan MAT
Triton T1 and Neptune) and laser ICPMS. Other analytical work will be
undertaken in collaboration with Dr Dave Mattey (automated laser
ablation stable isotope analysis, Geology Department, Royal Holloway,
University of London) and Dr Warren Beck (accelerator
mass-spectrometric 14C and 10Be analysis, NSF AMS Facility, Department
of Physics, University of Arizona). It will be necessary to undertake
short residential research visits to the collaborating laboratories.
Selection Criteria: The applicant should already have a PhD in,
paleoclimate or environmental modelling, stable isotope geochemistry or
oceanography (or to be awarded such a degree in the immediate future).
They should have experience in either the use of environmental
modelling (preferably in an oceanographic or paleoclimate context), or
stable isotope or trace element geochemistry in an Earth Science
context, and in data compilation and analysis techniques (including
curve fitting and time series analysis) and preparation of manuscripts
for publication. Good written and spoken English, and the ability to
work interactively in an interdisciplinary research group are
essential, together with proven ability to prepare papers for
conference presentation and publication.
Please quote reference 8863.
The closing date for applications is 9.00 am, 18th November 2002.
If you have received an application pack, please complete and return
the enclosed application and equal opportunities forms in the envelope
provided together with a copy of your CV. Alternately, the forms can be
downloaded from our web site at
http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/Personnel/recruit.htm and returned to
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If you have downloaded the application and equal opportunities
forms from the web site, please return them together with a copy of
your CV either by e-mail to [log in to unmask] or post to
University of Bristol, Personnel Services (EO), Senate House, Tyndall
Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TH.