PhD 15 : Integration of dynamical hydrogeophysical data in a multiple-point geostatistical framework


This position has been filled ! Please look at our other PhD positions offers !


The Applied Geophysics Research Unit at University of Liège is offering a PhD scholarship on the topic “Integration of dynamical hydrogeophysical data in a multiple-point geostatistical framework” starting preferably before July 1, 2017.
The project is funded by the Marie-Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network “ENIGMA – EU Training Network for In situ imaGing of dynaMic processes in heterogeneous subsurfAce environments” within the Horizon 2020 Programme of the European Commission.
ENIGMA is a consortium of high profile universities, research institutions and companies located in France, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, USA and UK, and will train 15 PhD students in total (Early Stage Researcher, ESR).
This particular PhD (ESR PhD 15) will be based at the Applied Geophysics Research Unit at University of Liège with research stays at CSIC Barcelona, AQUA Montpellier.

In order to be eligible, each applicant must fulfill the following criteria at the time of recruitment:

  • Mobility: At the time of recruitment, the applicant must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity (work, studies, etc…) in the country of the host organization for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to his/her recruitment.
    Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
  • Qualifications and research experience: The applicant must fulfill the requirements defined for Early Stage Researchers (ESRs): ESRs are researchers who, at the time of recruitment, have NOT yet been awarded the doctorate degree and are in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent) of the research career.

Project description

4D spatially distributed geophysical data sets, at an hourly or daily temporal resolution, gives new insights on transport processes and hydrogeological parameters distribution in the subsurface. The novelty of this project lies in their integration into inverse modelling techniques, historically developed to deal with sparse well dynamical data (breakthrough curves) or few temporal geophysical data. Furthermore, we will consider, prior to inversion, the validation/falsification of several plausible geological scenarios obtained from aquifer analogs using dynamic hydrogeophysical data. 4D ERT and SIP data contains information on transport processes and preferential flow paths that can help discriminate between various scenarios better than static images. A combination of 3D image analysis on geophysical data, temporal information and multidimensional scaling approach will be integrated in a multi-point geostatistical framework to compare outcomes from proposed scenarios with the observed data to update their conditional probability. The methodology will be developed in collaboration with early researchers (ESR, see description at from other institutions, in particular ESRs 13 and 14. New datasets from technologies developed by ESR6 (DTS) and ESR10 (GPR) will be integrated.

Principal supervisors are

Frédéric Nguyen, Applied Geophysics Research Unit at University of Liège,
Thomas Hermans, Applied Geophysics Research Unit at University of Liège,

Job description
The position is available for a 3-year period and your key tasks as a PhD student are:

  • To manage and carry through your research project
  • Attend PhD courses
  • Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
  • Teach and disseminate your research
  • To stay at an external research institution for a few months, preferably abroad
  • Work for the department

Formal requirements

Applicants should hold an MSc degree (or equivalent) with good results and good English skills. As criteria for the assessment of your qualifications, emphasis will also be given to relevant work experience and previous publications (if any).

Background of successful candidate

We invite candidates from different scientific fields to apply; geophysics, hydrology, hydrogeology, hydrogeophysics, physics, engineering, applied mathematics, soil physics or a related discipline. The candidate should have a solid background in numerical methods, modeling of hydrological/geophysics processes, programming and handling of large data sets. Furthermore, the candidate must have excellent personal skills and be able to work in a team. Experience with field work is highly desirable.

Terms of Employment

The successful candidates will receive an attractive salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for early stage researchers. The exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment and is dependent on the country correction factor (to allow for the difference in cost of living in different EU Member States). The salary includes a living allowance, a mobility allowance and a family allowance (if married). The guaranteed PhD funding is for 36 months (i.e. EC funding, additional funding is possible, depending on local supervisor).

For instance, for the ESR in France the annual salary will be :
41 425,20€  + 7,200€ (for mobility allowance) + €6,000 (for family allowance, if eligible); this is before any applicable tax and/or deductions

Application Procedure

The application, in English, must be submitted electronically through the ENIGMA website  and must include the following:

  • Cover Letter, stating your motivation and background for applying for the specific PhD project.
  • CV, including list of publications (journal articles, master’s thesis)
  • Diploma and transcripts of records (BSc and MSc)
  • References

IN ENIGMA, we wish to recruit ESRs that reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

There will be a first round of evaluation between January, 23rd and January, 31st.
There will be two other evaluation processes in March 2017 and in June 2017.

Candidates can continuously apply until June 2017

For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor.


Frédéric Nguyen


Start date: 01-07-2017
Department/Location: Applied Geophysics Research Unit at University of Liège
See also


This position has been filled ! Please look at our other PhD positions offers !