Fluid liberation from the down-going slab: chemistry and fluid pathways

PhD position in subduction zone geochemistry

Applications are invited for a PhD position (main host institution: University of Bern) that focuses on the composition and scales of fluid-mediated chemical cycling along and across the subduction interface and has an important component of analytical techniques development (secondment with THERMOFISHER).
The project, funded for 3 years according to EU salary regulations, involves carefully linking petrography with bulk rock and in-situ geochemistry (XRF, ICP-MS, TIMS, LA-ICP-MS, SIMS) of trace elements and isotopes, and fluid characterization. Analytical methods development and applicability to solve geoscientific problems is the core of this project; hence, natural sample material will be chosen based on suitability for investigating a given task. Close collaboration with mass spectrometry industry.

Specific Tasks include:
- Quantification of the chemical and isotopic signature of fluid components lost from the slab during subduction at progressively deeper levels of dehydration, using natural rock samples from fossil subduction zones
- Constraining migration pathways in and along the slab and across to the deep mantle, as well as dehydration/fluid production rates
- Linking these data to constraints on magnitude of non-lithostatic stresses and related seismicity.
We seek an individual with a strong interest in element- and isotope-geochemistry and analytical methods. An MSc in Earth Sciences and good communication skills in English are prerequisites. Experience in hands-on instrumental analysis, geochemistry, petrology and thin-section microscopy is desirable. The position is fully funded for three years through a Marie-Curie International Training Network. For eligibility criteria consult http://www.zip-itn.eu/job-opportunities/eligibility-criteria/

Applications should include a CV, a letter of application, two letters of reference (describing the candidate`s learning, research and communication skills, independence and motivation), and academic credentials (mark sheets and degree statements) through an online application facility hosted at the ZIP website http://www.zip-itn.eu/

New deadline to apply: Nov, 13th 2013.
Anticipated project starting date is January, 2014, the earliest.

Contact and further information (preferably by e-mail):
Dr. Thomas Pettke
University of Bern,
Institute of Geological Sciences,
Baltzerstrasse 1+3,
CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland
Email pettke@geo.unibe.ch