Local recruitment: Post-doctoral position on merging satellite observations, in-situ measurements and land biosphere models to advance tropical C-H2O science

Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)

Pasadena, CA, USA 🇺🇸

Job Details

New ideas are all around us, but only a few will change the world. That’s our focus at JPL. We ask the biggest questions, then search the universe for answers—literally. We build upon ideas that have guided generations, then share our discoveries to inspire generations to come. Your mission—your opportunity—is to seek out the answers that bring us one step closer. If you’re driven to discover, create, and inspire something that lasts a lifetime and beyond, you’re ready for JPL.

Located in Pasadena, California, JPL has a campus-like environment situated on 177 acres in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and offers a work environment unlike any other: we inspire passion, foster innovation, build collaboration, and reward excellence.

JPL is unique among NASA Centers in that its staff are Caltech employees, yet can access NASA technical resources. Cross-discipline teamwork is standard here: colleagues across JPL’s science and engineering organizations and on Caltech’s academic campus often work together. Learning to speak and understand other disciplines’ languages is a doorway to the creativity needed to do what has not been done before. JPL staff are encouraged to create mission concepts that address humanity’s core questions through a combination of science and technology. They are supported in developing ideas into proposals and hardware, and in communicating funded missions’ results to the scientific community and the broader public. JPL seeks to employ scientists and engineers who are passionate about lifelong learning and excited to both contribute to and lead team efforts. We emphasize the importance of partnering across discipline boundaries and creating a friendly, constructive work environment to overcome space exploration’s challenges. The Postdoctoral scholars at JPL benefit from an informal mentoring network, an annual conference showcasing their results, a dedicated seminar series, exposure to diverse career paths, and social connections across the JPL and Caltech community for advice on housing, childcare, and other aspects of living in southern California.


Post-doctoral researcher in the Water and Ecosystems Group with Anthony Bloom (advisor) and co-advised by Junjie Liu, Nicholas Parazoo, and John Worden. The successful candidate will help advance pan-tropical model-based estimates of net biosphere CO2, CH4, and/or H2O exchanges and their underlying process controls by jointly (a) using satellite and surface observations of land surface C and H2O states and fluxes (including solar-induced fluorescence, leaf area, biomass, and GRACE-based water storage anomalies, FLUXNET CO2 and CH4 datasets) to constrain and quantify processes controlling the land-atmosphere net biosphere CO2, CH4 and/or H2O exchanges using state-of-the-art Bayesian model-data fusion techniques, and (b) further constrain net land-atmosphere CO2 and CH4 exchange using atmospheric inversion estimates informed by Orbiting Carbon Observatory CO2 measurements and/or land-atmosphere CH4 emission estimates from GOSAT, TROPOMI. The post-doctoral researcher will use these to quantify the broader impact of climate, atmospheric CO2, and land management on the global H2O and C cycles and will investigate the associated global carbon-climate feedbacks, and will further use the CARDAMOM CO2, CH4, and/or H2O estimates to characterize the information content of the current and future synergistic (multi-satellite) Earth-observing system. The candidate will present their research at conferences and in journal articles.


  • A Ph.D. in Physics, Geophysics, Biogeosciences, Hydrology, or related scientific field.
  • Experience with the use of satellite observations and/or in-situ measurements of carbon and water states/fluxes.
  • Experience in the development and use of terrestrial and atmospheric models for investigating the global carbon and water cycles.
  • Experience with Bayesian data assimilation and/or model-data fusion theory and application.
  • Strong knowledge of how climate and land biosphere processes affect land-atmosphere CO2, CH4, and H2O fluxes.
  • A record of relevant peer-reviewed publications and presentations at major international scientific meetings and conferences.
  • Excellent oral (including public speaking) and written communication skills.
  • Experience in scientific programming, statistical analysis, and data visualization.

Desired Skills:

  • Eagerness to work with scientists and support staff from JPL and elsewhere in a highly collaborative project environment.

The appointee will carry out the research in collaboration with the JPL advisor, Dr. Anthony Bloom, resulting in presentations at conferences and publications in the open literature.

Applicants may be subject to additional program requirements by NASA. Postdoctoral Scholar positions are awarded for a minimum of one-year period and may be renewed up to a maximum of three years. Candidates should submit their CV, representative publications, contact information for three references, and a cover letter stating their research accomplishments and interests.

JPL is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to sex, race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, pregnancy or perceived pregnancy, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, protected military or veteran status or any other characteristic or condition protected by Federal, state or local law.

In addition, JPL is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor.

EEO is the Law.

EEO is the Law Supplement

Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory is a federal facility. Due to rules imposed by NASA, JPL will not accept applications from citizens of designated countries or those born in a designated country unless they are Legal Permanent Residents of the U.S or have other protected status under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3). The Designated Countries List is available here.





IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development