PhD Position (m/f/d) atmospheric transport of microplastics

DFG-funded Collaborative Research Centre 1357 Microplastics and the chair of micrometerorology

The University of Bayreuth is a research-oriented university with internationally and interdisciplinary profile fields in research and teaching. The DFG-funded Collaborative Research Centre 1357 Microplastics and the chair of micrometeorology has a vacancy for a

PhD Position (m/f/d) atmospheric transport of microplastics

The position starts in October 2023 and is limited until the end of the project 31.12.2026, and serves to promote a scientific qualification (doctorate). The remuneration is based on salary group 13 TV-L in part-time 75%.

The CRC 1357 Microplastics:

The DFG-funded Collaborative Research Centre Microplastics links the departments of Biology, Chemistry, Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and Earth Sciences at the University of Bayreuth. In its second funding period (2023-2026), the CRC 1357 investigates the biological effects of microplastics on various organisms, the transport of microplastics in and between air, water and soil, the formation and aging of microplastics and new approaches to solutions in the field of environmentally friendly plastics. A PhD within the CRC 1357 Microplastics means participating in an interdisciplinary team, working in an application-oriented research field and making a significant contribution to answering fundamental questions. PhD students can receive a structured professional and interdisciplinary qualification through the University of Bayreuth Graduate School and the BayNAT - PhD Program Interdisciplinary Microplastics Sciences and network intensively with PhD students from all participating disciplines.

Your task:

In the experimental project B05 "Behaviour and effect of microplastics in the land surface-atmosphere system" you will investigate the transport of microplastic (MP) particles at the interface between the air, soil, water, and plant surfaces. We aim to understand and quantify the mechanisms of aerial resuspension, dispersion and aging of environmentally relevant real-world MP including tire wear and fibers. Results from laboratory experiments under controlled conditions will be combined with those from field collaborative (across several projects) mesocosm experiments and flow-resolving computational fluid dynamics (large eddy simulation, LES) will enable a fundamental assessment of typical residence times and estimating the environmental impact of aerially dispersed MP.

Your profile:

  • Very good master's degree in biology, chemistry, physics, materials science or environmental science
  • Solid background in environmental natural sciences with a focus in surface meteorology and/or geoscientific transport processes
  • Interest in conducting experimental hands-on work in lab and field conditions
  • Demonstrated experience in scientific programming (Python, R, Matlab)
  • Experience in conducting Large Eddy Simulations (LES) and/ or Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is considered an asset, but no must
  • Ability to work independently and in a structured manner
  • Commitment, high flexibility, team spirit
  • Very good knowledge of English (written and spoken)


What you can expect:

  • Constructive working atmosphere in a friendly, open-minded, interdisciplinary and international team
  • Independent research activity for a doctorate in basic and application-oriented research in a socially relevant topic
  • Doctorate in the structured doctoral program "Interdisciplinary Microplastics Science" with opportunities for further individual and interdisciplinary qualification
  • Network of exciting national and international scientists and the opportunity for research stays in other groups
  • Flexible working hours
  • Company health management
  • Compatibility of family and career

The University of Bayreuth values the diversity of its employees as an enrichment and is explicitly committed to the goal of equal opportunities for men and women. Women are strongly encouraged to apply. Applicants with children are very welcome. The University of Bayreuth is a member of the Best Practice Club "Familie in der Hochschule e.V.", and has successfully participated in the HRK audit "Internationalization of the University". Persons with severe disabilities will be given preferential consideration if they are equally qualified.

More information and further job offers within the Collaborative Research Centre can be found on the homepage of the CRC 1357 Microplastics. More information about the project on the homepage of the Micrometeorology Group.

Please apply online with meaningful application documents (letter of motivation, CV and references) via our Application Portal Uni Bayreuth.

Call identifier: SFB1357-B05

The documents will be deleted after filling the position according to the requirements of data protection.

Contact person for inquiries is Prof. Dr. Christoph Thomas:, Phone: +49 921 55 2293