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Research Opportunity in Inverse Problems, Data Assimilation, Hydraulics, and Hydrology

The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center's Coastal & Hydraulics Laboratory (CHL) performs research on ocean, estuarine, riverine, and watershed systems in support of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the Department of Defense (DOD) Task Force in support of the Ocean Commission. A multi-disciplinary team of scientists, engineers, and support personnel work in CHL's internationally known, unique facilities. This team has developed state-of-the-art experimental and computational models for solving water resource problems worldwide. Physical facilities of approximately 1.7 million square feet and high-performance computing facilities at the DOD Supercomputing Research Center ( are the basic infrastructure for producing cutting-edge products for successful coastal, inland water resources, and navigation management. CHL work, although primarily in support of the DOD and the Corp's districts, also interfaces with other federal, state and local agencies, academia, conservation groups, and the general public, as appropriate. The Research Participation Program for USACE-ERDC-CHL provides opportunities to participate in new and on-going applied research and development projects. Research projects range from design guidance to three-dimensional computational models. Focus is placed on inland and coastal navigation, military logistics over the shore, dredging, flood control, storm and erosion protection, waterway restoration, fish passage, hydro-environmental modeling, water/land management, and other water and sediment-related issues facing the nation. This opportunity is located in Duck, NC. For more information about USACE-ERDC-CHL, please visit

The Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory (CHL) provides experimental and computational expertise for solving water resource problems worldwide. CHL’s research and development addresses water resource challenges in groundwater, watersheds, rivers, reservoirs, coastal inlets and wetlands. In an effort to support CHL’s mission, the participant will collaborate with a mentor to design, develop, evaluate data assimilations, and machine learning techniques for state and parameter estimation in subsurface and free-surface flows. The participant will gain experience in a fast pace laboratory, while learning forward hydrologic and hydrodynamic model development. This experience will also focus on incorporating the participant’s knowledge and interest to open-source projects on data assimilation and inverse modeling.

Appointment Length
This ORISE appointment is for a 12 month period. Appointments may be extended depending on funding availability, project assignment, program rules, and availability of the participant.

Participant Benefits
Participants will receive a stipend to be determined by ERDC-CHL. Stipends are typically based on the participant’s academic standing, discipline, experience, and research facility location. Other benefits may include the following:
  • Health Insurance Supplement. Participants are eligible to purchase health insurance through ORISE.
  • Relocation Allowance
  • Training and Travel Allowance

Nature of Appointment
The participant will not enter into an employee/employer relationship with ORISE, ORAU, DOD, or any other office or agency. Instead, the participant will be affiliated with ORISE for the administration of the appointment through the ORISE appointment letter and Terms of Appointment.

The candidate should have a strong background in the mathematical and computational aspects of modeling subsurface and surface flows. Knowledge in machine learning, data assimilation, and inverse problems is also desirable.

Currently pursuing or received Master or Doctoral Degree required.

Desired start date: September 30, 2019.