Job opportunity: Postdoctoral Research Associate on microbial and physical characteristics of melting Arctic sea ice

The Polar Science Center at the Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Washington is seeking a full-time Postdoctoral Research Associate to study microbial and physical characteristics of melting Arctic sea ice and to explore the influence of biogenic particles such as ice algae, bacteria and polymer gels on the melting behavior of the ice.

The successful applicant will contribute to a NSF sponsored project assessing the habitability and physical structure of melting Arctic sea ice. This is an interdisciplinary project that focuses on the interplay between ice microbiology, polymers and ice physics. Responsibilities of the position include design and execution of laboratory and field experiments, collection of data in the lab and field, data analysis and synthesis, manuscript preparation, and presentation of results at national meetings. The position is based in Seattle, but significant travel to field sites at Barrow, Alaska and to a collaborating laboratory in Switzerland will be required. Laboratory work will be conducted in a walk-in freezer laboratory at the University of Washington as well as in a conventional wet lab. The position will be supervised by lead-PI Dr. Karen Junge, with Co-PIs Bonnie Light, and Monica Orellana as co-advisors (

The successful applicant will have a Ph.D. in biological oceanography, microbiology, marine microbial ecology, and or geophysics, or related discipline, preferably with prior field experience, and excellent skills in scientific deduction, and strong proclivities for working independently. Demonstrated laboratory and/or field-applied skills in microbial ecology and molecular biology (including metagenomics and/or transcriptomics), scientific methodologies, including up-to-date knowledge of microscopy, optical imaging and imaging analysis techniques in biological and/or physical systems are strongly recommended. The ideal candidate has some experience of ice physics and has previously worked in an interdisciplinary context. Experience with marine bacteria and/or extremophiles (especially psychrophiles) and/or microalgae and polymers, will be considered positively. Demonstrated communication skills, oral and written are essential.

University of Washington faculty engage in teaching, research and service.  The University of Washington is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.  The position is full time and offers salary commensurate with experience and excellent benefits. Initial appointment will be for 12 months starting during or soon after September 2014 with a second year contingent on satisfactory progress.

Screening of applicants will begin 1 March 2014 and continue until a suitable candidate is identified.

Applicants are asked to submit:

(1) a letter of introduction (3 page max. that addresses qualifications described above)
(2) CV
(3) list of publications
(4) the names and addresses of three references

Applicants should submit these materials (preferably via e-mail) to:

Dr. Bonnie Light
Principal Physicist
Applied Physics Laboratory – University of Washington

For inquiries regarding this position, please contact Dr. Bonnie Light. For questions regarding disability accommodations, please contact Stephenie Brink at