TINC-Job Monitor: Investigation of airborne soot nanoparticles using a Single Particle Soot Photometer (SP2) (Villigen, Switzerland)

The Paul Scherrer Institute is a centre for multi-disciplinary research and one of the world’s leading user laboratories. With its 1300 employees it belongs as an autonomous institution to the Swiss ETH domain and concentrates its activities on solid-state research and materials sciences, elementary particle physics, energy and environmental research as well as biology and medicine.

For the investigation of airborne soot nanoparticles we are looking for a

PhD Student

in the Laboratory of Atmospheric Chemistry

Your tasks

A Single Particle Soot Photometer (SP2) is available to characterise the properties of individual airborne black carbon (BC) containing particles ("soot"). The SP2 combines laser-induced incandescence with optical sizing to measure the size distribution of BC cores in nanoparticles with high sensitivity, and it provides added information on coatings with scattering material.
In-situ measurements of atmospheric black carbon using the SP2 are planned amidst major sources in a metropolis (Paris) and in free tropospheric background air masses (Jungfraujoch research station). This will cover two far ends of the atmospheric aging and transformation scale. A coupled configuration of a Hygroscopicity Tandem Differential Mobility Analyser (HTDMA) with a Cloud Condensation Nuclei Counter (CCNC) and the SP2 will be used to reveal further details of the mixing state of atmospheric BC particles and its relevance for their hygroscopic properties and their potential to act as CCN. Further investigations include the reconstruction of past trends of atmospheric BC loadings from historic ice core records.
Most instrumentation is available though efforts for technical advancement are needed. The above research questions are addressed in collaboration with other technicians and scientist from the Laboratory of Atmospheric Chemistry, the Laboratory for Radiochemistry and Environmental Chemistry and as part of international projects.

Your profile

This position requires an enthusiastic and creative scientist interested in atmospherically relevant questions and a masters or equivalent degree in chemistry, physics, or environmental sciences. A strong interest in statistics/mathematics/programming is crucial for the data analysis. General experience in experimental work is needed and specific knowledge in the area of aerosol science is advantageous. A very high level in spoken and written English is another prerequisite, German advantageous. The candidate must have affinity for practical work and cooperation in a multidisciplinary team.

For further information please get in touch with:
Martin Gysel, Phone +41 (0)56 310 4168, martin.gysel@psi.ch

Please submit your application to: Paul Scherrer Institut, Human Resources, Elke Baumann, ref. code 5502-01, 5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland, elke.baumann@psi.ch.

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