We seek a Research Assistant or Postdoctoral Scholar to support the numerical modeling component of a collaborative numerical (UCSD Dept of MAE) and observational (Scripps Institution of Oceanography) project on shoaling internal gravity waves. The selected candidate will develop a predictive numerical framework for the coherent structures that arise during the nonlinear evolution of shoaling internal waves and propagating internal bores observed by a fiber optic Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) system deployed in the shelf waters off La Jolla. This position requires a background in the technical and phenomenological aspects of physical oceanography, numerical methods for PDEs, coding experience, and the ability to work independently. 

Figure: Observational evidence of streak-like patterns in the wakes of internal gravity waves: (a) Temperature variability in depth, (b) noctilucent clouds in the mesopause, and (c) modulations of sea-surface roughness produced by trains of shoaling nonlinear internal waves. Below the surface, these waves develop secondary instabilities with transverse coherent vortical structures.


  1. Implement models for nonlinear internal solitary waves and their interactions using Kadomtsev-Petviashvili-type or Boussinesq-Navier-Stokes-type equations.
  2. Analysis of the flow physics of streak-like, spanwise instability in shoaling solitary internal waves and near-surface gravity currents using hydrodynamic stability theory.
  3. Process, analyze, and physically interpret physical oceanographic data including fiber optic DTS measurements.
  4. Develop physics- and simulation-based optimization strategies for fiber optic DTS antennas for fixed and towed applications.
  5. Assist in project planning, and manuscript preparation for scientific journal publications and progress reports.

Required Qualifications and Experience

  1. Ph.D. in engineering sciences, oceanic and atmospheric sciences, applied mathematics, or a related discipline, with a preference for an established track record of peer-reviewed scientific communications.
  2. Knowledge of physical oceanography, particularly internal wave physics.
  3. Experience in code development for the numerical solution of partial differential equations.
  4. Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  5. Ability to work independently and in a highly collaborative environment.

Application review will begin immediately and the position remains open until filled.