PhD position: soil gas emissions

The Climate and Environment Department (CLIAMB) at the National Institute for Amazonian Research (INPA) and State University of Amazonas (UEA) in Manaus (Brazil), with the “Gas Metabolomics” group at the Biogeochemical Processes Department at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena (Germany), has an opening for a PhD position within the joint Brazilian – German collaborative research project ATTO – Amazon Tall Tower Observatory.

Project description

In the proposed project, the PhD student should perform research on biogeochemical cycles, mainly related to carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). He/She will perform with long-term measurements of those gases and linked to other variables such as soil moisture, soil temperature, oxygen concentration and redox potential. In addition to the field measurements, the seasonal and spatial dynamics in the field must be accompanied by lab experiments under controlled environmental conditions (INPA, Manaus-Brazil) to determine which gases are produced and consumed due to microbial metabolism. The results will be expected to contribute to the understanding of microbial iron/manganese oxidation/reduction and phosphorus cycling.


The successful candidate has to have Undergraduate and MSc degrees in Environmental Sciences, Soil Microbiology, Biogeochemistry, Chemistry, or a related field that allows him/her to enroll in the PhD program Climate and Environment (INPA/UEA). It is desirable for the candidate to have the following key skills:

(i) knowledge of biogeochemical processes in tropical soils

(ii) the interest on learning and operating laser trace gas monitors, and to conduct soil incubation experiments in the lab

(iii) the ability to work efficiently in a highly interdisciplinary team.

The candidate needs to have oral and written communication skills in English, and if he/she is not a Portuguese speaker, this has to be learned until his/her graduation.

Although this position is to be majority held in Manaus – Brazil, based on the progress of the project, the candidate can expect a research stay at Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena, Germany, to participate in advanced training in gas measurement methods. Also, it is expected that the results will be presented at an international conference.

Application Procedure

The PhD position will be available from September 2018 on for the duration of four years. Applications including a CV, letter of motivation, and two reference letters with contact details should be addressed to Dr. Thomas Behrendt ( and Dr. Eliane Gomes Alves ( until 20th August 2018.

Link to job offer at INPA

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