Dr Ben Webber (School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia)
Dr Juliane Schwendike (School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds)
Extreme weather in the tropics, particularly in the form of heavy rainfall and strong winds, can destroy the lives and livelihoods of the local population through flooding, landslides and impacts on agriculture and local infrastructure. Such extreme weather in the tropics is primarily controlled by large scale weather patterns such as convectively coupled equatorial Kelvin waves (Figure 1), the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) or El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Although the broad features of these tropical weather patterns are known, their impact on extreme weather is not; this represents a major gap in our understanding of tropical weather.
You will determine the effect of tropical weather patterns on extreme weather using a combination of observational analysis, fieldwork and numerical modelling. Initially, this will involve analysis of state-of-the-art satellite data sets that measure rainfall every 30 minutes across the whole planet and wind, temperature and other variables every hour. You will then analyse model forecast data from the UK Met Office available through the FORSEA (Forecasting in Southeast Asia) project, and conduct sets of experiments with a state-of-the-art atmospheric model to determine what factors generate and influence these tropical waves.
Training and research environment
You will join an active research group at UEA in tropical meteorology and climate. You will be trained in meteorological and climate theory, and in meteorological analysis of very large data sets, and computer modelling of weather and climate. You will have the opportunity to present your work at national and international conferences. There will also be an opportunity to take part in the international TerraMaris field campaign in Indonesia and Christmas Island, Australia, in 2023, led by Prof. Adrian Matthews at UEA, with partners at University of Reading and Leeds, the UK Met Office, and Indonesian agencies.
We seek an enthusiastic, pro-active student with strong scientific interests and self-motivation. You will have a degree in physics, mathematics, meteorology, oceanography or environmental science with good numerical ability.