Scientist—Atmosphere and Climate


We are looking for an outstanding atmospheric scientist to address important questions related to climate change, making use of atmosphere-climate models in combination with satellite observations. The focus of the position is to study the role of aerosols and clouds in our climate system.

You and SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research:  Climate change is one of the most pressing problems of our time. In the Earth Observation program of SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research we use satellites to answer urgent scientific questions like:  What is the effect of aerosol on clouds, precipitation, and Earth’s radiation balance? How large are CO2 and CH4 emissions on local, national and global scale, and how are they changing in time? SRON is involved in the different phases of satellite projects: from mission definition, building, and calibration to data processing and scientific interpretation. Over the last decade, SRON together with partners in the Netherlands have implemented a roadmap to reduce the uncertainty in the direct and indirect aerosol forcing using innovative spaceborne instruments. To this end satellite measurements of optical- and microphysical aerosol properties as well as cloud properties are needed. Advanced Multi-Angle Polarimetric (MAP) instruments can provide the required information content. Therefore, SRON has led the development of the SPEXone instrument that will fly on the NASA PACE mission (launch 2024). SRON is also leading the data processing and scientific data exploitation.

Your position and team: You will work in the Earth Science Group (ESG) of SRON which consists of approximately 25 scientists (permanent, postdocs, PhD students) that work on data processing and interpretation of satellite instruments as well as the definition of new instrumentation and guiding the development. You will work closely together with scientists that work on remote sensing of aerosols and clouds. Also, you will work closely together with scientists from the Earth Sciences department of the VU Amsterdam, building on a coordinated research program. It is expected that you will write scientific proposals to acquire funding to appoint new PhD students and post docs.

Your project: You will work on the interface of atmosphere-climate models and satellite observations to improve our understanding of the role aerosols and clouds play in our climate system. Explicit focus in the coming years is on the use of PACE observations in general and SPEXone observations in particular. SPEXone will provide novel aerosol products related to size, composition, and absorption with high accuracy. Other instruments on PACE (HARP-2, OCI) will provide accurate and novel cloud retrievals (droplet number concentration, droplet size, cloud phase). You will use the observations of PACE, possibly in combination with other satellites, to better quantify aerosol-radiation and aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions. For this purpose, you will work on the validation of atmosphere-climate models and the combination of these models with observations.