Ground-based remote sensing of greenhouse gases and aerosols

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Ground-based remote sensing of greenhouse gases and aerosols
  • Doctorate
Do you have experience with remote sensing instrumentation and are you looking for an exciting research position in a dynamic team of climate scientists? Please apply at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

FTE: 0.8 - 1

Job description

In this project, which contributes to the Dutch Ruisdael Observatory, you will work with a mobile Bruker EM27/Sun fourier transform spectrometer for measuring total column CO2, CH4 and CO, and a Cimel CE318-TP9 sun photometer for measuring aerosols to be mounted on an instrumented trailer. Using this mobile equipment, urban gradients in greenhouse gas abundance will be measured in The Netherlands, with the ICOS measurement site at Cabauw as reference. The observed co-variation of greenhouse gases and aerosols will be used to improve the methods for retrieving greenhouse gases column abundances from satellites, in preparation the Copernicus CO2 mission to be launched in 2025/26, and in close cooperation with SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research.

Your duties
  • set up the EM27/Sun and Cimel spectrometers and prepare for their use in measurement campaigns
  • contribute to the planning and execution of measurement campaigns in the Netherlands as well as abroad (e.g. COCCON network)
  • analyze the data in cooperation with retrieval and modeling experts at VU and SRON
  • present results at Ruisdael project meetings and international conferences
  • publish in prominent international journals


  • a PhD in atmospheric science, specialized in ground-based remote sensing of atmospheric composition
  • knowledge of and experience with the retrieval of atmospheric abundances from remotely sensed spectra
  • a proven interest in remote sensing of greenhouse gases and quantification of emissions
  • be able to work successfully in an (inter)national research team
  • be fluent in English speaking and writing

What are we offering?

A challenging position in a socially involved organization. On full-time basis the remuneration amounts to a minimum gross monthly salary of €2,709 (scale 10) and a maximum €4,274 (scale 10), depending on your education and experience. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 0.8 FTE.

The initial employment contract will affect a period of 2 years, with the possibility of extension.
Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • solid pension scheme (ABP)
  • contribution to commuting expenses
  • possibility to save holiday hours, for sabbatical leave

About Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

The ambition of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is clear: to contribute to a better world through outstanding education and ground-breaking research. And to be a university where personal education and societal involvement play a leading role. Where people from different disciplines and backgrounds work together on innovations and on generating new knowledge. Our teaching and research embrace the whole spectrum of science – from the humanities, the social sciences and the pure sciences through to the life sciences and the medical sciences.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is home to more than 26,500 students. We employ more than 4,600 individuals. The VU campus is easily accessible, located in the heart of Amsterdam’s Zuidas district, a truly inspiring environment for teaching and research.

Diversity is one of our university’s core values. We are an inclusive community, and we believe that diversity and international activities enhance the quality of education and research. We are always looking for people who can enhance diversity on our campus thanks to their background and experience.

The Faculty of Science
The Faculty of Science inspires researchers and students to find sustainable solutions for complex societal issues. From forest fires to big data, from obesity to medicines and from molecules to the moon: our teaching and research programmes cover the full spectrum of the natural sciences. We share knowledge and experience with leading research institutes and industries, both here in the Netherlands and abroad.

Working at the Faculty of Science means working with students, PhD candidates and researchers, all with a clear focus on their field and a broad view of the world. We employ more than 1,250 staff members, and we are home to around 6,000 students.

About the department
The PostDoctoral position is in the Earth & Climate group of the Department of Earth Sciences, specialised in the global cycles of carbon and water and the drivers and impacts of climate change. 


Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button and upload your curriculum vitae and cover letter until 8 March 2020. The job interviews are planned in the period of February 24 to March 15, when possible please take them into account when applying for the position.

Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.

Vacancy questions
If you have any questions regarding this vacancy, you may contact:

Name: Sander Houweling
Position: Professor
Telephone: +31205983687

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