Post-doc position on Hydrodynamic and sediment transport model of the Mahury estuary (French Guiana)

The 300 km coastline of French Guiana is one of the most dynamic coastlines due to mud banks migration. Along this shoreline, several rivers flow to the Atlantic Ocean and interact with these mud banks. Most of the population, which is expected to double in the next decades, lives along rivers or near the coastline. This growth combined with industrial developments and global warming increase the vulnerability against flooding and beach erosion. A project between CEREMA and BRGM has been funded to analyze (1) the interactions between rivers and the coastal mud bank migration and (2) their impact on risks management.

The studied site is the Mahury estuary where is located the main Port of French Guiana. Since 2012, a mud bank is migrating along the mouth which induces severe sediment settling and continuously dredging. The main city "Cayenne" is also located beside the mouth. Sand beaches of the city are fed by sediment fluxes from the Mahury and offshore fluxes. The presence of mud bank modifies the dynamics: wave attenuation by mud, coarser particles trapped by mud and modification of stratification pattern. The fluxes modification may induce more sediment deficit and increase the risk of sea flooding.

Within this framework, it is proposed to build a 3D hydrodynamic and sediment transport model of the Mahury estuary. The numerical models will be based on the open source TELEMAC-MASCARET modeling system (www.opentelemac.org). The ability of the numerical model to predict the maximum turbidity and its seasonal variation will be investigated. Once validated, the model should provide information related to the influence of the mud bank and modification of the main forcing. The numerical model will benefit from several in situ data (PhD Orseau 2016) and from remote sensing data (PhD Abascal Zorrilla in progress).

We are looking for a candidate having a PhD in fluid mechanics, hydraulics, geosciences or coastal oceanography and strong expertise related to sedimentology (cohesive and non-cohesive), geomorphology, fluid mechanics, hydraulics, wave modeling and numerical methods. Knowledge of French language is not mandatory.

About the host research laboratory:

The welcoming laboratory is the joint research unit (between Université de Technologie de Compiègne and the CEREMA Water Sea and Rivers) located in Compiègne in France (40 min by train from Paris).

How to apply

Candidates are encouraged to apply to Dr. Nicolas Huybrechts (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) with a motivation letter, CV, and contact information of two referees.
Deadline: October 30.
Expected starting date: December 1st 2017

Post-doctoral position on Data Assimilation in 2D hydraulic models

The Saint-Venant Hydraulics Laboratory is a joint research laboratory between Ecole des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC), Electricité de France R&D (EDF R&D) and Cerema. This gives it a unique position in the field of applied fluid mechanics, at the interface between academy and industry. The Saint-Venant Hydraulics Laboratory seeks to fill a 18 month post-doctoral position on Data Assimilation in 2D hydraulic models.

The aim of this post-doctoral position is to provide an operational tool required to move vessels into the Gironde channel. The numerical tool, based on TELEMAC system (widely used open-source code www.opentelemac.org), must be able to deliver the real time water depth with uncertainty and confidence interval. The purpose of the present work is to develop a mathematical method resulting from data assimilation techniques, in order to formalize the knowledge of the events to automate the calibration process. Data assimilation methods combine the solution of models with measurements. They rely on a mathematical background that helps to find optimal solutions to complex problems with an explicit representation of errors. The underlying optimization problem is solved using a descent based or filter approach. This makes it possible to define the optimal parameter adjustment which minimizes the difference between the observations and the results arising from the numerical model. This optimization problem will be solved using derivative-free and gradient algorithms.

Successful applicants should, by the start of the appointment, have a Ph.D., or equivalent experience in Applied Mathematics, Applied Physics, Computer Sciences or Mechanical/Civil Engineering. The use and development of high performance numerical computing are highly desirable. The researcher will be employed by Ecole des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC). Salary and benefits will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

About Saint-Venant laboratory and the host research team:

The Saint-Venant laboratory is actively engaged in fundamental and applied research, and its research activities are organized along three main themes: (A) Waves and marine hazards, (B) Modeling and simulation of free-surface flows, (C) Sediment transport and morphodynamics.
The laboratory has access to a unique variety of facilities, such as the 8000 m2 of experimental facilities and the development of high-performance Computational Fluid Dynamics models for environmental flows and transport processes, including the opensource Telemac-Mascaret modelling system (http://www.opentelemac.org). The laboratory is located on the EDF Lab site in Chatou (France), about 15 km from Paris downtown.
More information about our laboratory can be found at: http://www.saint-venant-lab.fr

How to apply

Applicants should send to Dr. Jean-Philippe Argaud and Dr. Cedric Goeury (see e-mail
addresses below): a cover letter and CV. All applications completed by April 31st, 2017 will receive full consideration, but candidates are urged to submit all required material as soon as possible. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.
For additional information, please contact:

  • Dr. Jean-Philippe Argaud [EDF], e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Dr. Cedric Goeury [EDF], e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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