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Postdoc on optimal control and nonlinear stability of MHD flows, Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis.

Du 1 septembre 2020 au 31 août 2021

Laboratoire Dieudonné
Université Nice Sophia-Antipolis, Parc Valrose, Nice.
Contact :
florence.marcotte@inria.fr



The project aims at developing the numerical tools required to achieve fully nonlinear optimal control of MHD flows. These tools will be used to identify "minimal dynamo seeds" in simple swirling flows relevant to stellar systems, i.e. challenge the stability of such flows with respect to initial magnetic fields of arbitrary amplitude and structure.

The considerable diversity of long-lived magnetic fields observed in the Universe raises fundamental questions regarding their origin. Although it is now widely accepted that such fields are sustained by a dynamo instability in the electrically conducting fluid layers of celestial bodies, understanding the conditions of nonlinear excitation and saturation of a dynamo instability in a swirling MHD flow remains an important challenge for the modeling of astrophysical magnetic fields.


The project aims at developing the numerical tools required to achieve fully nonlinear optimal control of MHD flows. These tools will be used to identify "minimal dynamo seeds" in simple swirling flows relevant to stellar systems, i.e. challenge the stability of such flows with respect to initial magnetic fields of arbitrary amplitude and structure. Furthermore, nonlinear optimisation will be used as a physical diagnostic to gain novel understanding of the mechanisms that are most favorable to dynamo action in astrophysical systems. Original ideas and suggestions from the postdoctoral researcher will be encouraged.

The position requires a PhD in applied maths, fluid mechanics or related field, and is available from September, 1st. Funding is already secured for two years (one-year position renewable once). Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, preferably before July, 10th.
 
Interested candidates are welcome to contact me (florence.marcotte@inria.fr) for more informations.