Postdoc/Senior Scientist position (m/f/d) (Remote Sensing for Ecohydrology)

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ)

Leipzig, Germany 🇩🇪


The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) with its 1,100 employees has gained an excellent reputation as an international competence centre for environmental sciences. We are part of the largest scientific organisation in Germany, the Helmholtz association. Our mission: Our research seeks to find a balance between social development and the long-term protection of our natural resources.

The job

We are looking for a highly motivated scientist to join the Remote Sensing Department ( at UFZ. The scientist will apply high-resolution satellite observations and model-data fusion framework to quantify ecohydrological variables like soil moisture, evapotranspiration and its partitioning in transpiration and evaporation, water use efficiency, aiming to better understand the drivers and mechanisms controlling complex interactions between vegetation and hydrologic flows at multiple temporal and spatial scales. Strong collaboration is foreseen with the Remote Sensing Centre for Earth System Research (, and other partner institutions (e.g., iDiv, DLR, MPI-BGC, TROPOS, UKCEH) to better understand water dynamics and ecosystem functioning in a changing climate.
The employment contract will be limited for 3 years with option for extension based on evaluation. The earliest possible start of contract is April 1, 2023.

Your tasks

The scientist can choose from one of the following two topics: 

  1. further developing and evaluating our model-data fusion framework for high-resolution soil moisture (surface and root zone) or evapotranspiration estimation at regional and global scales, through the combined use of multi-source satellite observations (e.g., Sentinel 1-3, MODIS, Landsat, SMAP) and ground-based measurement networks (e.g., TENERO, eLTER).
  2. applying remote sensing data, statistical machine learning methods or mechanical models to assess vegetation-water interactions, including responses to soil moisture/vapor pressure deficits, radiation or precipitation responses and feedbacks, and to improve understanding and modelling of drought responses.

We offer

  • Excellent technical facilities which are without parallel
  • The freedom you need to bridge the difficult gap between basic research and close to being ready for application
  • Work in inter-disciplinary, multinational teams and excellent links with national and international research networks
  • A vibrant region with a high quality of life and a wide cultural offering for a balance between family and professional life
  • Interesting career opportunities and an extensive range of training and further education courses

Your profile

  • PhD degree in remote sensing, meteorology, hydrology, physical geography, environmental sciences, physics, statistics, computer sciences, or related field
  • Good programming (e.g., Python, R, Matlab, or Fortran) and remote sensing data processing skills
  • Good communication skills in English and willingness to work in an interdisciplinary and multicultural research team
  • Good record of peer-reviewed publications or successful experience in third-party funding application is an asset
  • Please submit your application documents including your CV, cover letter, 2 references as well as relevant attachments

Place of work


Working time

100% (39 hrs/week)

Contract limitations

limited contract / limited contract for 3 years with option for extension after evaluation


Renumeration according to the TVöD public-sector up to pay grade 13 including attractive public-sector social security benefits.


Your contact for any questions you may have about the job:
Prof. Jian Peng





IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development