PhD project – Construction of a Hydrological Surface Model for Forest Tundra Applications in Northern Canada
PhD project – Construction of a Hydrological Surface Model for Forest Tundra Applications in Northern Canada, at Université Laval, Québec City
Where You Will Study
Université Laval (UL) is the oldest French-language university in North America. UL is a comprehensive university boasting some 48,000 students—a quarter
of them graduates—as well as 17 faculties, 60 departments and schools, and nearly 400 undergraduate and graduate programs in every field of knowledge. Université Laval offers strong graduate programs in northern research. Although graduate studies at Université
Laval can be carried out in English, the candidate will be strongly encouraged to learn French. Université Laval is located in Quebec City, but the experimental site supporting the proposed PhD work is located near Umiujaq, at the frontier between the Canadian
boreal forest and tundra.
What You Will Do
Work is underway to construct an experimental hydrological surface model around three components that emanates either from the Soil, Vegetation, and
Snow (SVS) land surface model under development at Environment and Climate change Canada or from the Maximization of the Entropy Production (MEP) method. The First component of this hydrological surface model
consists in the MEP energy balance model, which was shown to realistically simulate land surface fluxes over a wide range of climates and vegetation covers. The
second and third components are the soil and the snow modules of the SVS land surface model. This PhD specifically aims to improve the soil and snow modules. SVS soil module needs to account for the discontinuous permafrost commonly present in the Canadian
forest tundra, while a multilayer physical snowpack scheme is proposed in replacement for the actual SVS snow module. It should include advanced parameterizations of the physical processes governing the snowpack evolution, as well as specific developments
for Arctic snow. The candidate will closely collaborate with another PhD student focused on collecting and analyzing experimental data at the research site (see Fig. 1) near Umiujaq, Canada
(56.5°N, 76.5°W), along the coast of Hudson Bay. This work is part of the highly funded Sentinel North program, designed to develop innovative tools in optics-photonics
and improve our understanding of the northern environment and its impact on human beings and their health.
What You Need
·MSc degree in hydrometeorology or closely related discipline
·Experience in physically-oriented hydrometeorologic modeling
·Demonstrated record of research and publication
·Ability to conduct graphical and statistical analyses
·Strong skills in written and oral communication of research results, in English and in French
·Strong competence in FORTRAN
·Strong competence with data, program and file management in UNIX
·Competence with analysis and scripting in MATLAB or similar analysis language
·Demonstrated skill in working with large and heterogeneous datasets
·Familiarity with super-computing environments (e.g., computing clusters)
Please send an email to Prof. François Anctil ([hidden email])
and Prof. René Therrien ([hidden email]) with your CV, a short motivation letter, examples of previous research (M.Sc. thesis or published papers), as well as the names of two referees.
For an ideal starting date between June and September 2017.