Physical Oceanographer

Job reference:
BAS 20/58
Contract type:
Full Time
Fixed Term Appointment (17 months)
Starting salary from £30,782 to £33,459 per annum.
We offer generous benefits
Polar Oceans team
BAS Cambridge
Closing date:
21 June, 2020 11:59 pm

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, please note there may be delays to our recruitment timeline.


The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) are looking for a Physical Oceanographer to apply adjoint modelling techniques to problems in North Atlantic circulation and climate. This work is part of the NERC ACSIS project (The North Atlantic Climate System Integrated Study).

What is the role about?
The successful candidate will use existing adjoint modelling tools and other relevant data sources to investigate the causes of the recent 2015 North Atlantic cold anomaly, which featured record low sea surface temperatures, with impacts on atmospheric circulation and European climate. The objective is to better understand the local and remote causes of such cold anomalies, potentially leading to improvements in the precitability of these events and their subsequent impacts on European climate. To be successful in this role, you must have excellent competence and demonstrated experience with (1) analyzing heat budgets in numerical models (e.g. state estimates), (2) scientific writing and visualization, and (3) scientific analysis and interpretation, especially in ocean and climate dynamics. The ideal candidate will have experience implementing and analysing adjoint sensitivity experiments.


The role requires a physical oceanographer with a storng background in ocean circulation and demonstrated experience working with numerical ocean data. They will focus on the North Atlantic basin sensitivities and heat budgets as part of the NERC ACSIS project.


PhD in physical oceanography or closely related subject (or equivalent experience).


  • Use ocean adjoint models and other relevant data sources to investigate the local and remote causes of the 2015 North Atlantic cold anomaly
  • Contribute to open source software development by building and contributing to repositories where appropriate
  • Deliver talks and posters at scientific meetings (remote or in person)
  • Contribute to publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals
  • Collaborate with ACSIS-funded researchers at the National Oceanography Centre on project objectives, analysis, and interpretation
  • Any other tasks identified by the Science Leader a Director

Please quote reference: BAS 20/58
Closing date for receipt of application forms is: 21st June 2020
Interviews are scheduled to be held: 8th July 2020

BAS is an Equal Opportunity employer. As part of our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and promoting equality in careers in science, we hold an Athena SWAN Bronze Award and have an active Equality, Diversity and Inclusion programme of activity. We welcome applications from all sections of the community. People from ethnic minorities and disabled people are currently under-represented and their applications are particularly welcome. We operate a guaranteed interview scheme for disabled candidates who meet the minimum criteria for the job. We are open to a range of flexible working options, including job sharing, to support childcare and other caring responsibilities.

Skills are listed as either Essential or Desirable. Desirable skills importance rating in parenthesis (1 is high, 5 is low)

Communication skills - a) oral skills b) written skills

  • Fluent in written and spoken English - Essential
  • Able to communicate detailed technical information clearly and concisely to a range of stakeholders (e.g. project partners) - Essential
  • Proven ability to present research effectively in written and oral form - Essential

Computer / IT skills

  • Ability to work in a Unix-style operating environment - Essential
  • Experience calculating heat budgets from ocean model data - Desirable [1]

Decision Making

  • Strong record of research at PhD level - Essential

Interpersonal skills

  • Able to work constructively on a collaborative team - Essential

Managerial ability

  • Proven record of project management at the PhD level - Essential

Numerical ability

  • Past experience and very strong numerical ability consistent with the experience of analysing numerical ocean models - Essential

Other Factors

  • Strong understanding of how BAS science fits into a wider perspective - Essential


  • PhD in physical oceanography or closely related subject (or equivalent experience) - Essential

Skills / Experience

  • Excellent understanding of ocean and climate dynamics - Essential
  • Very good competence in ocean model analysis - Essential
  • Previous experience implementing and analysing ocean state estimates (e.g ECC0v4) - Desirable [1]

You can apply for this job online or you can print off the application forms, fill them out by hand and mail them.

Apply Online:

Apply by post:

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Recruitment team is working remotely and cannot access the building. If you would like to apply for this job but cannot apply online, please contact us: [email protected]

If you need more information

Email: [email protected]
Telephone: +44 (0)1223 221400
Facsimile: +44 (0)1223 362616

The information you provide during the application process will only be used for the purpose of progressing your application, to fulfil legal or regulatory requirements where necessary or, in the case of the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Questionnaire, to help BAS meet its equal opportunities policy.

The British Antarctic Survey will not share the information you provide with any third parties, and the information will be held securely by the British Antarctic Survey whether the information is in electronic or physical format. Please note that the Equal Opportunities Monitoring Questionnaire will be detached from your application prior to the short-listing of candidates for interview.

Unsuccessful applications will be securely destroyed 6 months after the end of the recruitment process (or 1 year after the end of the recruitment process in the case of Marine Staff and AEP. The applications of successful applicants will be retained as part of their personnel file.

Further information can be found in the information notice of NERC, our parent body.