Research Assistant/Associate (f/m/d)

in Geothermal reservoir characterization of deep limestones in the Rhine-Ruhr region



Prof. Peter Kukla


+49 241 80-95720



RWTH Geological Institute in cooperation with Fraunhofer IEG

Our Profile

Given the challenges in geothermal operations and the ambitious expansion plans for geothermal energy in many countries, there is an urgent need for experts with a broad understanding of geothermal systems. How can such systems be operated in the most efficient and safe manner? Within the ITN EASYGO, funded by the European Commission, the IDEA League universities TU Delft (TUD), ETH Zurich (ETH), RWTH Aachen University (RWTH), Politecnico di Milano (PoliMi) and 10 industry partners are addressing this question from different perspectives, integrating geology, geophysics, geochemistry, advanced modeling and process engineering. In this framework, EASYGO is looking forward to train tomorrow’s leading geothermal energy experts.

EASYGO is seeking 13 highly qualified and enthusiastic individuals holding a relevant Master degree (or equivalent) to conduct state-of-the-art rese- arch within the projects specified below. Please find additional information on EASYGO as well as detailed project descriptions on and do not hesitate to contact the associated supervisors in case of questions. Successful applicants will conduct their research work at two universities and in close collaboration with industrial partners. They will also benefit from the various training and networking opportunities within the ITN and large-scale infrastructure by the consortium partners across Europe.

In this project, the successful applicant will conduct novel approaches towards the quantitative assessment of geological, geophysical and geomechanical distribution and properties for an integrated 3-D geometric and geothermal reservoir model. Our main focus will be on the evaluation of typical fracture networks in limestones as targeted geothermal reservoir rocks in the Rhine Ruhr Region. Specifically, we attempt meter to centimetre-scale mapping of fracture networks and degree of diagenesis in selected limestone outcrops using drone and Lidar imagery, and to test the obtained reservoir characteristics in existing underground infrastructures of the Fraunhofer TRUDI laboratory and the new Weisweiler geothermal test site. A close cooperation with the newly founded Fraunhofer Institution for Energy Infrastructures and Geothermal Energy (IEG) and RWE Power AG will be an integral part of the project.

How to apply:

Please apply for maximum 3 positions within the EASYGO project and indicate on each application all other applications and a clear order of preference.
Please submit your application as a PDF file named EASYGO_12_Lastname_Firstname.pdf containing a CV, motivation letter, certificates and a list of courses/study plan with grades including range, highlight the most important courses for the position. An English language certificate and certificates of practical experience are desirable.
Please note that this file will be shared with members of the EASYGO recruitment committee at all four participating IDEA League universities and one industry representative. Women are particularly encouraged to apply.

Please be aware of the ITN mobility rule, which says: you must not have resided or carried out your main activity (e.g. work, studies) in the country where you will be recruited for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date.

Your Profile

- University degree (Master or equivalent) in geosciences
- Experience in geological, geophysical, and geomechanical data analysis of limestones and preferentially geological modelling
- Good English knowledge (written & spoken)
- High degree of initiative, discipline and team spirit
- Ability to work scientifically creative and independent

Your Duties and Responsibilities

- Research towards high-resolution 3-D models of target outcrops
- Geophysical, geomechanical and geological characterization of Devonian and Carboniferous limestones in the region, including fluid migration analysis
- Integrated reservoir modelling comparing outcrop and underground well data
- Research secondment at Fraunhofer IEG (Prof. Rolf Bracke) and industry secondment at RWE Power AG (Dr. Jens Hannes)
- Active participation in the various training and networking opportunities provided by EASYGO and the IDEA League doctoral school
- Presentation of own research at selected scientific conferences and publication in peer-reviewed journals

What We Offer

The successful candidate will be employed under a regular employment contract.
The position is to be filled 01.01.2021 until limited to 3 years.
This is a full-time position with the possibility of a part-time contract upon request.
The successful candidate has the opportunity to pursue a doctoral degree in this position.
The salary corresponds to pay grade EG 13 TV-L of the German public service salary scale (TV-L).
RWTH is a certified family-friendly University. We support our employees in maintaining a good work-life balance with a wide range of health, advising, and prevention services, for example university sports. We also offer a comprehensive continuing education scheme and a public transportation ticket available at a significantly reduced price.
RWTH is an equal opportunities employer. We therefore welcome and encourage applications from all suitably qualified candidates, particularly from groups that are underrepresented at the University. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and will not be discriminated against on the basis of national or ethnic origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability or age. RWTH is strongly committed to encouraging women in their careers. Female applicants are given preference if they are equally suitable, competent, and professionally qualified, unless a fellow candidate is favored for a specific reason.
As RWTH is committed to equality of opportunity, we ask you not to include a photo in your application.
You can find information on the personal data we collect from applicants in accordance with Articles 13 and 14 of the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) at

Application deadline:31.10.2020
Mailing Address:Prof. Peter Kukla
Geological Institute
RWTH Aachen University
Wuellnerstr. 2
52062 Aachen, Germany
Applicants are invited to submit their applications via email. For data protection reasons, however, we recommend sending applications via mail.