Post-Doctoral Researcher Biological Waste-to-Energy Technologies - University of South Florida

Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Job Type: 
Job Rank: 
Post Doctoral Researcher
Job Institution: 
University of South Florida
Job Description: 

Project description: The goal of our new 5-year NSF Partnership in International Research and Education (PIRE) project is to initiate a cultural shift in our individual and university research and education programs toward developing international research competence and building capacity through global partnerships. Our proposed framework for sustainable water-energy systems integrates adapting engineering systems to environmental and cultural changes associated with growth in human populations, urbanization, and resource consumption. We also focus on the interstices of geographical context, cultural analysis, and how the scale of implementation of a solution impacts results. Our overarching research question is: can effective, geographically-appropriate, and culturally relevant engineered systems be established that utilize wastewater as a resource for recovery of energy, water, and nutrients?

Duties and responsibilities:  The post-doctoral researcher will work with Drs. James Mihelcic, Sarina Ergas, Daniel Yeh and Qiong Zhang on research related to bioenergy production from waste streams in a developed and developing world context. The post-doctoral researcher will also be encouraged to develop and pursue questions of their own interest within the broad scope of the project.

Qualifications: We are particularly looking for applicants with laboratory research experience in the area of energy and nutrient recovery from anaerobic digestion and/or algal-based bioenergy systems.    In addition, applicants: 1) must have completed all requirements for Ph.D. degree focusing on Environmental Engineering or a related discipline with a specialization in Biological Processes by the start date; 2) must demonstrate and ability to design, construct, operate and analyze data from bench and pilot-scale bioreactors; 3) have ability to serve as a mentor for undergraduate and graduate students, 4) have an excellent publication record; 5) be willing to assist the PIs with proposal writing and teaching, 6) be able to travel to partner institutions in the Caribbean and/or Europe.

 About USF: The University of South Florida is a high-impact, global research university dedicated to student success. USF ranks 50th in the nation for federal expenditures in research and total expenditures in research among all U.S. universities, public or private, according to the National Science Foundation.  Serving more than 47,000 students, the USF System has an annual budget of $1.5 billion and an annual economic impact of $3.7 billion. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference. The University of South Florida’s Tampa campus is located in an area known for pleasant weather, numerous Gulf Coast beaches, and a variety of cultural and recreational activities that provide an outstanding quality of life. It was recently listed by Sierra Magazine as the 12th greenest college in the U.S.    

 The USF Environmental Engineering program maintains over 5,500 ft2 of research labs, providing state-of-the-art equipment for chemical and biological research. Instruments available for this project include a Metrohm 850 professional AnCat IC system, a Shimadzu TOC/TON analyzer, pH, ISE and DO meters and automatic titrators. Field sampling equipment includes two Isco samplers outfitted with rain gauges, flow, pH and conductivity meters. Battery operated pumps, a Van Dorn surface water sampler, a Van Veen bottom grab sampler, a soil corer, a Quanta Hydrolab multimeter probe (pH, DO, T, TDS, Turbidity, Depth) and a variety of handheld meters are also available. The College of Engineering is also supported by a Machine shop, electrical support staff and Environmental Health & Safety.

 Salary and Benefits:   Salary is based on qualifications.  The position can be renewed annually depending on satisfactory performance and funding availability.  Health insurance benefits will be offered through the USF Post-Doctoral Scholar Health Insurance Program.

 How to Apply: Applicants must provide a cover letter, resume, statement of intent, and names and contact information for 3 professional references.  Application materials are submitted for this position at: