Post Doc Fellow, Geology

University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, OH

ID: 7081420
Posted: July 21, 2021
Application Deadline: Open Until Filled

Job Description

Founded in 1819, the University of Cincinnati embarks upon its third century – building on the past and defining the future by leading urban, public universities into a new era of innovation and impact through its strategic direction, Next Lives Here. Underscoring the power of creativity, ingenuity, invention and inclusion, what’s Next will accelerate our unrivaled momentum, evidenced by eight straight years of record enrollment and rankings that include placement among America’s top 100 public universities by U.S. News & World Report. Home to a diverse student body of nearly 47,000 and more than 4,200 distinguished faculty, the university combines its Research 1 (Very High Research Activity) Carnegie Classification with a physical setting that The New York Times recently acclaimed as “the most ambitious campus design program in the country.

Job Overview
The Geology Department at the University of Cincinnati (UC) is seeking to fill a Postdoctoral Researcher position to work on a funded NSF Hydrologic Sciences project entitled “The influence of hierarchical and multiscale river morphology and sediment heterogeneity on hyporheic exchange processes”.

The project will utilize well-established Theis Environmental Monitoring and Modeling Site at UC, combining state-of-the-art field experiments with advanced numerical modeling capabilities. The scope of the advertised postdoctoral project includes the development of complex flow and multicomponent reactive transport models to address surface water-groundwater exchange problems as described in the abstract below.

The start date of September 1, 2021 for the position is desirable. The position is for 3 full years.

There are a number of career development opportunities and outreach activities for the postdoctoral researcher hired for this project. These include participating in annual conferences (e.g., AGU, GSA), opportunities to mentor both undergraduate and graduate students, and opportunities to contribute to the broader impacts of the project, such as those with the Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC). The postdoctoral researcher will also attend the Sharing Science Workshop and Practicum as part of the collaboration with CMC. Through these resources and activities, the researcher will enhance their ability to effectively communicate scientific aspects of the project with the general public.

Additionally, the postdoctoral researcher will receive teaching instruction through both formal and informal sources. Formal sources include, but are not limited to, classes and workshops offered by the UC Center for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning (CET&L) and the UC Preparing Future Faculty (PFF) programs. These resources cultivate exceptional teaching by promoting research-based best practices, providing programmatic and curricular guidance, and supporting equity, diversity, and inclusion. Informally, the researcher will be encouraged to participate in frequent seminars and lectures across the UC campus, such as those conducted by the Geology department and the College of Engineering. Unique opportunities for networking and development also will be provided by trips to nearby federal organizations (e.g., EPA).

Public Abstract
Solutes, heat, and other dissolved constituents coalesce along rivers as river water and groundwater mix, often referred to as hyporheic exchange. Processes within the hyporheic zone have the potential to alleviate contaminant loads in rivers and improve water quality. These processes depend on the shape of the channel and the distribution of sediment types, however, and thus vary across space and time. This project will combine innovative field measurements with advanced computer models to provide insights into the influence of sediment heterogeneity and river channel morphology on solute flux and nutrient cycling. Results of this research will have practical applications in water resource management, and will guide strategies to optimize both surface water and groundwater quality. The project will use the Theis Environmental Monitoring and Modeling Site at the University of Cincinnati. Hands-on activities at the site will stimulate student interest, and prepare them for water-related STEM careers. A diverse group of K-12 students will receive hands-on experience through a water program developed in partnership with the Cincinnati Museum Center.

The project goal is to provide insights into how multiscale sediment heterogeneity and river channel morphology control hyporheic exchange processes, and to improve the capacity of numerical models to predict spatial patterns of hyporheic flux, solute residence times, and resulting biogeochemical transformations. The project will utilize innovative field observations to develop and validate multiscale numerical models. The project will address several primary goals: (1) quantify the controlling influence of multiscale fluvial forms and associated stratal architecture on hyporheic flux and solute residence times, and determine the relevance of scales; (2) determine how multiscale fluvial forms and stratal architecture influence biogeochemical reaction dynamics within the hyporheic zone; and (3) identify which heterogeneity and morphologic attributes are most essential for understanding and accurately predicting hyporheic exchange processes.

Required Education
The position requires a Ph.D. in hydrology, hydrogeology, earth science, environmental engineering, or another closely related discipline.

Additional Qualifications Considered
A solid background in chemistry, physics, math and programming (preferably in Fortran and Python) is required.
Superior verbal and written communication skills, demonstrated experience in research, and interests in scientific problems related to hydrogeology/hydrology are desirable.
Experience working with OpenFoam ( and PFLOTRAN (https://www.pflotran.org are also desirable.
Application Process
Qualified and interested applicants must complete our online application process at
In addition to the application, candidates must submit a cover letter of no more than two pages describing their research to date, as well as future areas of interest.
Candidates must also submit a current copy of their curriculum vitae and contact information for two letters of reference.
All applicants will also complete a statement of commitment to diversity and inclusion as part of the application process.


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