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Dynamics Research Scientist

Posted: 8 Jan 2020 Closes: 9 Feb 2020
Exeter, GB Salary DOE
Permanent & Full-time met-office/20200108133332

Salary Information:

Senior Scientist: £36,684 - £40,352 pa*
Scientist: £30,325 to £33,260 pa*
Foundation Scientist: 23,673 - 26,119 pa*

*Salary quoted is based on full-time salary (37 hours) and 27.5 days annual leave and 8 bank holidays.


The foundation of the Met Office's success in operational numerical weather and climate prediction is its Unified Model (UM). The advent of new supercomputer architectures and programming paradigms require new software and algorithmic solutions; the time has come to develop a new system. This new model aims to match the UM in its accuracy, stability and time to completion, but extend its scalability to ever increasing core counts and to improve portability across different computer architectures. At the core of this new model (provisionally known as LFRic after L.F.Richardson), lies a new dynamical core: GungHo.

Dynamics Research (DR) is the team responsible for all aspects of the UM's dynamical core, from maintenance of the current ENDGame formulation to the development of its replacement GungHo.

The GungHo dynamical core moves away from the finite difference, latitude-longitude representation that is enjoyed by the UM dynamical core and instead achieves accuracy and scalability using finite elements on a cubed-sphere mesh.

Additional Supplementary Information:

Dynamics Research has a very close working relationship with one of the Met Office Joint Chairs at Exeter University as well as significant interaction with a number of other universities and the UM Partners. The post therefore offers considerable opportunity for personal development in a number of complementary areas.

Full-time, part-time and job share applications are invited.

The Met Office is an equal employer and flexible and UK homeworking requests will be considered. It is expected that you will need to be based in Exeter 100% of the induction period and thereafter around 75% of the week.

This role will nominally be based in Exeter but we will consider applicants wishing to work elsewhere within the UK as outlined above. This post may require applicants to travel to conferences or training events beyond Exeter and possibly internationally.
To apply, please click on the ‘apply’ button below. 

Key Dates: Closing date 09/02/2020 with interviews expected week commencing 02/03/2020. Please note that you will be notified if you are successful or unsuccessful. 

Should you be offered an interview, please be aware there may be a selection exercise which could include a presentation, written test or a scenario-based activity. If you require any reasonable adjustments during these exercises, please include this information in your application. 

Please note, when joining the Met Office all new employees will start on the salary band minimum. 

This recruitment post is not offering UK Visa and Sponsorship and therefore requires all applicants to be eligible to work within the UK / EU without restriction. If you are a non–EU candidate, you will be required to provide and attach all relevant eligibility documentation to your application at the time of applying. 

Please note that successful candidate/s will be required to satisfactorily undergo security clearance checks. This will generally require the candidate to have lived in the UK for at least three out of the last five years, but applicants not meeting this criteria may be considered. 

We are a “Disability Confident” employer, Mindful Employer, with an Athena Swan Bronze award for our work on gender equality and an LGBTi network.

Job Purpose:

As part of Dynamics Research and the broader Next Generation Modelling Programme team, to develop, validate and implement GungHo within the LFRic infrastructure.

Job Responsibilities:

  • 1. To undertake fundamental research to develop numerical methods and algorithms for the next generation modelling systems.
  • To develop the GungHo and LFRic models, so that its scalability, accuracy and robustness can be assessed.
  • Using numerical methods and carefully designed numerical experimentation, to validate the performance of the prototype model in order to identify any weaknesses in the formulation.
  • To research, develop and implement solutions to address any weaknesses and improve the performance of the prototype.
  • To develop the operational prototype with particular attention to optimisation on a massively parallel supercomputer architecture to ensure the benefits of the new dynamical core are realised.
  • To publish results within international peer-reviewed journals and present results at international conferences to maintain scientific credibility and the Met Office’s reputation.

Essential Qualifications, Skills & Abilities:

1. All: Evidence of knowledge equivalent to a good degree (2:1 or above) in a mathematical or physical science

Scientist: A PhD in mathematics or a physical science or equivalent research experience

Senior scientist: substantial post-doctoral experience in this specific area of atmospheric science. 

2. Proven ability to conduct scientific research, displaying initiative, independence and mathematical skills. 

3. Evidence of the motivation and drive to overcome obstacles in order to solve scientific problems. 

4. Evidence of the ability to write software to address scientific questions. 

5. All: Evidence of the ability to work flexibly within a team.

Senior Scientist: Evidence of ability to provide scientific/technical leadership or mentoring to junior staff. 

6. Evidence of good oral and written scientific communication skills (e.g. writing reports, giving presentations).

Desirable Qualifications, Skills & Abilities:

1. Evidence of ability to use numerical techniques and apply them to practical problems. 

2. A good fluid dynamical background, particularly of geophysical fluid dynamics. 

3. Experience of a scientific computing environment, for example using Fortran, Python or UNIX/LINUX, especially in the context of a Met Office system.

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