Post Doc in Marine Trace Metal and Isotope Biogeochemistry

Post Doc in Marine Trace Metal and Isotope Biogeochemistry

Published Deadline Location
17 Sep 12 Nov 't Horntje (Texel)

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Job description

The Department of Ocean System Research (OCS) is looking for a highly motivated post doc with a background in marine trace metal biogeochemistry and with an interest in the cycling of iron and iron isotopes as well as other bio-active metals (Principal investigator dr. Rob Middag).

The research
Researchers in the Department Ocean System Research (OCS) study open-ocean processes from a variety of disciplines, ranging from physical and chemical oceanography, marine geology, paleoceanography to deep-sea ecology. We investigate the oceans in the past and present, to assess their future role. We make use of experiments and data collection during sea-going oceanographic research, as well as laboratory experiments and analyses in our home base on Texel. The department works around the globe, from the Antarctic to the Arctic, from the Caribbean to the North Sea. One of the areas we work in is the North Atlantic Ocean.
Researchers within OCS focus on the biogeochemical cycles of trace elements and their isotopes (TEI’s) in the global ocean and are active in the International GEOTRACES program. Many trace elements are essential for marine life and as such influence ocean ecosystems and the global carbon cycle. Advances in sampling and innovative analytical techniques make it possible to study the cycles of TEI’s at unprecedented scale and in ever more detail. Specifically for iron, it is not only apparent that this micro-nutrient plays a pivotal role in the ocean, but also that the cycle of iron is changing due to ongoing climate change. However, our current understanding of the marine iron cycle still does not allow reliable biogeochemical modelling to predict and evaluate the consequences of these changes. Particularly processes such as biological metal uptake, remineralization and dissolved-particle interactions in both the water column and benthic boundary layer are not sufficiently understood, nor the susceptibility of these processes to change.

The project
This project is part of the NWO Vidi grant awarded to Rob Middag, “Trace metals and the Arctic-Atlantic gateway in a changing world, local processes and global connections (MetalGate)”. In this project we investigate the cycling of iron and its isotopes as well as other bio-active metals in the Greenland-Iceland-Norwegian-Sea region, the main gateway between the Arctic and Atlantic Ocean. We combine trace metal and isotopic measurements with temperature controlled bio-assays at ecologically relevant conditions and developed sampling techniques to study the processes and interactions in the benthic boundary layer.
The project will be based on samples collected the past summer during an expedition aboard our research vessel ‘Pelagia’ to the high latitude North Atlantic and the seas surrounding Iceland. Samples were collected using the NIOZ Titan sampling and CTD system for trace metals as well as state-of-the- art temperature-controlled deck incubators and a new trace metal clean sampler for sampling of the benthic boundary layer. The expedition is a GEOTRACES process study and various international collaborators are involved.


Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ)


We are looking for a highly motivated candidate with a PhD in chemical oceanography or a related area with proven ability to publish research in international peer reviewed journals. You have experience in marine trace metal sampling and analysis, and experience with iron isotope analysis is of advantage. Due to the international character of the research team, it is crucial you are proficient in spoken and written English.
Your position will be hosted by the Department of Ocean Systems (OCS) at the Royal NIOZ on the isle of Texel. We highly encourage applicants from all members of our research community and of diverse background to join us.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 1 year (fulltime), which will be extended for two more years following a positive evaluation.

Employment of this position at Royal NIOZ is by NWO (The Netherlands Organization of Scientific Research). We offer a position for a period of 1 year (fulltime), which will be extended for two more years following a positive evaluation. The salary is compliant with the CAO-OI (Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Research Institutes), and includes a pension scheme, a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, a year-end bonus, and flexible work arrangements.
You may expect attractive secondary employment conditions. We offer generous relocation expenses for employees coming from abroad and provide support with finding accommodation.


Royal NIOZ, the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research

Royal NIOZ, the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, is part of NWO-I, the institutes organisation of NWO (Dutch Research Council).

Excellent, world-leading
An independent, international committee of experts, evaluating NIOZ according to the Standard Evaluation Protocol (SEP), finds 'that NIOZ is a world leading marine research institute producing excellent science. The four marine research departments are all world leading as measured by the highest quality research output, award of major prizes, and an outstanding record of external research funding. This all makes it evident that NIOZ is one of the most influential oceanographic research institutes world wide.'


  • Postdoc; Research, development, innovation; Technical and laboratory
  • Natural sciences; Engineering
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • Doctorate
  • AT 2021-49


Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ)

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Landsdiep 4, 1797 SZ, 't Horntje (Texel)

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