Earth, winds, clouds and mountains: all-scale atmospheric model developments

Loughborough University - School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering

Starting: October 1st 2017

Interview date: w/c February 13th 2017

Primary supervisor: Dr Joanna Szmelter

Secondary supervisor: Professor Graham Hargrave

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship funded by the NERC CENTA Doctoral Training Partnership, starting October 2017. The project will be based in the Wolfson School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering at Loughborough University. 

Project Detail:
To date, improvements in numerical model and observation systems significantly contributed to improving the accuracy of weather forecasts. However, the new generation of numerical weather prediction tools is needed to resolve and describe a vast range of scale physical interactions present in atmospheric flows. Atmospheric models operating on structured (Cartesian type) grids are routinely used for highly turbulent atmospheric flow simulations. However, with a progress of computing, there is an increasing need for more flexible unstructured computational meshes.

Applications are invited for a PhD student to work on development of meshes and algorithms enhancing efficiency of the existing, prototype flow solvers for atmospheric stratified flows. Due to the uniquely multidisciplinary character of the work, we anticipate that the student will have to receive training complementing his/her existing background. Extensive guidance will be provided. The successful candidate will be expected to work closely with collaborating scientists including members of the leading international atmospheric laboratories and forecasting institutions. S/he will be encouraged to undertake short placements with the collaborating partners, make presentations at review meetings, and to travel to international conferences and seminars. The research and developments will be generic and applicable also to broader multi-physical applications and engineering thus offering an excellent background for diverse career paths. 

The Wolfson School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering is one of the largest and most successful engineering departments in the UK and boasts an established reputation for excellence in teaching and research, as well as strong links with industry. We conduct a diverse range of internationally-recognized programmes including environmental flows and pollution research. See

Further Information:
For further information on this project, please see the main CENTA website or contact Dr Joanna Szmelter,,

Entry requirements:
Applicants will hold, or expect to gain, a 2:1 degree (or equivalent) in Mathematics, Environmental Sciences, Engineering, Physics or Computer Science. Programming and model developments experience and/or understanding of concepts of numerical methods, fluid dynamics, CFD will be beneficial. A Master’s degree and/or experience in a related area associated with the research will be an advantage. 

The studentship is for 3.5 years, which is intended to start October 2017. It provides a tax-free stipend of £14,296 per annum (2016/17 rate) for the duration plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate and a research training support grant of £8,000.  Due to funding restrictions, only students with UK/EU fee status will be considered for this opportunity. For further information on studentship eligibility, see RCUK Terms & Conditions.

Contact details: Dr Joanna Szmelter,, +44 (0)1509 227580

How to apply:
To apply:

  • Complete a CENTA studentship application form in Word format (available from
  • All applications should be made online at Under programme name, select “Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering”. During the online application process, upload the CENTA studentship application form as a supporting document.

Please quote CENTA-LU2 in your online application.

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Midlands of England