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Postdoc fellow, paleoclimatology - St Martin D'Heres, France

Postdoc fellow, paleoclimatology - St Martin D'Heres, France

St Martin D'Heres, France
Application deadline is April 2023 with interviews planned in the first half of May. Start date is expected to be September 2023. Contract will be for 24 months. Salary will be between 2805.35 and 3963.98 euros gross per month depending on experience.
The objective is to study the diversity of warm (interglacial) periods over the last 500 thousand years (ka) using a combined data-model approach. The selected person will contribute to the work undertaken within the framework of the MOPGA HOTCLIM project (2020-2026).
Past warm intervals (interglacials) of the Quaternary represent a series of natural experiments to understand the sensitivity of the climate system to its boundary conditions i.e. the external orbital forcing, atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations and continental ice sheet volume. In particular, the interglacials of the last 450 thousands of years (ka hereafter) are relevant in the context of current and future global climate change as they are characterized by a warming amplitude in Antarctica, comparable to that simulated for the end of the century.

The boundary conditions varied a lot from one interglacial to another with consequent effects on the recorded climate changes in natural archives. Indeed, paleoclimate records reveal a large interglacial diversity in terms of their intensity, shape and duration. The occurrence of interglacials with differing characteristics is an intriguing aspect of glacial-interglacial cycles that the ‘ice age’ theory does not account for. Despite significant progress made over recent decades in developing continuous records from climate archives and climate models with different degrees of complexity to test possible mechanisms, the link between interglacial properties, orbital forcing, atmospheric CO2 and resultant feedbacks remains unexplained.

Two of the main limitations are that:
-A comprehensive view of the forcings, the climate system response and the impacts at larger scales requires to build paleodata data syntheses providing a spatio-temporal view of interglacial climate at multi-millennial scale. However, such data syntheses are still lacking beyond the Last Interglacial referred also to as Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5e, ~129-115 ka).
-The modelling of interglacials and the comparison with paleodata are key (1) to test with physics-based tools climate forcing and feedbacks hypothesized from the data and (2) to evaluate how well Earth System Models also used for future projections, simulate warm climates. However, the realism of Earth System model simulations investigating the diversity of interglacials has not been fully tested yet as model-data comparisons focus mainly on the two most recent interglacials.

As part of the HOTCLIM project, work is on-going to provide the first multi-millennial-scale spatio-temporal climate data syntheses over Marine Isotopic Stage (MIS) 7 (~260-190 ka) and MIS 9 (~350-300 ka). Those two intervals are of particular interest: the MIS 7 warmth intensity is relatively weak while the northern hemisphere summer insolation forcing is one of the strongest in the past 800 ka. As for MIS 9, it is characterized by the highest atmospheric CO2 levels over the last 800 ka.
Hence, we are looking for a postdoctoral researcher who will investigate past interglacial diversity using MIS 7 and MIS 9 as study cases to be compared also with MIS 5e. To do so, she/he will:
* Build on the individual MIS 9, MIS 7 and MIS 5e climate syntheses to compare climate changes at regional scale between these three different interglacial periods as recorded in natural archives;
* Compile existing transient and equilibrium climate simulations from different Earth System models on MIS 7 and MIS 9 and identify key modeled climatic patterns during these two interglacials;
* Lead a comparison between (1) MIS 9, 7 and 5e climate data and (2) outputs from existing and new simulations.
The selected candidate is expected to write scientific articles, to present results in international conferences and to be involved in the ICE3 team and IGE activities (group meetings, seminars, ...).
The selection will be based on the following scientific and technical criteria:
- Good understanding of the climate system and climate changes over the last 2 Ma;
- Demonstrated experience in the interpretation of paleoclimate records;
- Demonstrated experience in the analysis of climate data;
- Demonstrated experience in the use of programming tools;
- Demonstrated experience in writing scientific articles;
-Very good level of communication in English, both orally and in writing;
- Excellent ability to work in a team.
Applications should include a CV, a cover letter and 2 names for references.

Apply online:
Application deadline
Further information
For more information, please contact Emilie Capron:
Contact email
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