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Department of Natural Hazards
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Position in experimental avalanche/fluid dynamics research
The Department of Natural Hazards in Innsbruck is part of the Austrian Federal Research and Training Centre for Forests, Natural Hazards and Landscape (BFW). 276 staff members, 30 of them in Innsbruck, are committed to contributing to the sustainable use of
landscape and to protect human lives and property against alpine natural hazards. In the Snow and Avalanche division, we investigate the behavior of the snow cover and the dynamics of avalanches on different scales. We are looking to appoint a:

Research Fellow in measurement technology of snow avalanche dynamics

Your duties will include design and supervision of avalanche dynamics experiments on full-scale avalanche experimental field sites, on the small scale and in the laboratory. In this framework, you will substantially contribute to: i) analysis of data recorded by advanced measurement techniques; ii) validation and calibration of mathematical avalanche models with respect to recent experimental results.

Your profile: University degree in technical or experimental physics/engineering sciences or a related field of environmental sciences. Essential skills are: Profound knowledge of mechanics, statics, dynamics and technical design; high programming proficiency for collecting and analyzing complex experimental data; experience in designing and running experimental set-ups.

Desirable skills include:
  • Knowledge on fluid and continuum mechanics, as well as mathematical modelling, which allow transferring process knowledge of avalanches to other types of mass movements. 
  • You have good language skills in written and spoken English. German language skills are desirable (at least the readiness to acquire them).
  • You are a team player, you are flexible and you are ready to initiate and to work within international collaborations, including project acquisition and management. Last, but not least, you enjoy working outdoors and are capable of safely navigating winterly alpine environment.
We offer a challenging position in a stimulating environment and the opportunity to develop your research career in the small and fascinating field of avalanche research. Fixed term appointment for 2 years. Salary starting from ¤ 2.706,- (full-time, labour grading v 1/1), according to the Austrian Contractual Employee Act (‘Vertragsbedienstetengesetz’).

If you are interested in the position, please send your application documents by 15.09.2017 to BFW Institute for Natural Hazards, Hofburg – Rennweg 1, A-6020 Innsbruck, or by email: For additional information, please feel free to contact Dr. Jan-Thomas Fischer or Mag. Reinhard Fromm (tel. +43 512 573 933 5102 / 5104, email /

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