Post-doc: Monitoring Fluid Mud for Navigation

Delft University of Technology
June 19 2017
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Maritime transport is the most efficient and environmentally friendly type of transport. Navigability in muddy areas is guaranteed by the estimation of nautical depth. For practical reasons, nautical depth is defined as a critical density. It has long been recognised that the relationship between density and the strength of mud is non-linear. Therefore, a new, strength-based definition of nautical depth has to be implemented. Mud is, however, a complex medium, and it is therefore a challenging task to correctly estimate its strength in-situ.

The goal of this project is to develop a novel, non-intrusive measurement technique that allows us to determine nautical depth in muddy areas. Geophysical monitoring methods can potentially be adapted for mud characterisation purposes. Both acoustic and shear waves can potentially be used for predicting the strength of mud layers. These attributes can provide not only information about the solid bottom of the waterways but can also be tested to detect the water-fluid mud interface using measured velocities and attenuations.

This work will include adaptation of existing methods and development of new ones linking seismic properties to strength of the mud layers. The acquisition geometry will be designed in order to increase the single-to-nose ratio of the desired signals (acoustic, shear, Scholte and converted waves). The outcome of this research will help to revise current dredging maintenance strategies in ports and waterways. Candidates should have the following qualifications:

• A PhD in Geophysics, Seismology, Applied Physics or any other related field.

• Enthusiasm for applied research, theoretical and experimental work.

• Strong analytical skills and the ability to work independently and in a team.

• Good proficiency in spoken and written English.

This job comes from a partnership with Science Magazine and Euraxess