In virtuo experiment for the biological pump in the mesopelagic domain
The Lab-STICC (CNRS UMR 6285) is seeking an enthusiastic PhD candidate with a strong scientific knowledge background. The Computer Science thesis aims at modeling/simulating the biological pump in the mesopelagic domain : it intricates models from marine biology, biophysics and geophysics.
The biological pump is the set of processes that generate and transport the Particulate Organic Carbon (POC) from the surface to the deep sea and sediments. It includes primary production, particle aggregation/remineralization and particle entrainment into marine food web (mesopelagic is 100m to 1000m). With a quantitative understanding of these processes, we could better evaluate how the biological pump will respond to the CO2 added to the atmosphere by humankind.
To study the biological pump, we model involved phenomena as autonomous entities, then we experiment this set of models in interaction by simulation with man in the loop. The “In virtuo experiment” thus considers virtual reality as a laboratory to build and test models about the studied domain by using the methods of experimental science. The elaboration of such a virtual laboratory in collabaration with biogeophysists, requires categorizing different sorts of models (using for example the topology of their interactions) and different sorts of experiments (for example : parameter study vs model choice study).
Applicants should have a good adaptation ability and a background in Computer Science (UML, MAS), and/or bio-geo-physics or related area. Prior experience in epistemology would be an advantage. The context of this ambitious thesis is yet very comfortable, because the PhD student will work closely with a postdoctoral colleague recruited in fall 2013 by the partner laboratory (LEMAR, CNRS UMR 6539), specialized in the ecology of mesopelagic zooplankton.