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IIE - actualités / news

Mesures de pluie & Antennes mobiles - LTE

Pourquoi ne pas utiliser le réseau dense des antennes de téléphonie mobile pour détecter les grosses averses localisées, qui peuvent parfois surcharger les réservoirs, notamment en milieu urbain. C'est l'idée développée par l'Eawag, institut de recherche spécialisé dans le domaine de l'eau, en collaboration avec le Laboratoire de télédétection environnementale du professeur Alexis Berne de l'EPFL.

L'émission "Biosphère" de la "Radio suisse romande" a consacré un reportage à ce sujet: http://blogs.rsr.ch/biosphere/mesurer-la-pluie-grace-aux-antennes-de-telephonie-mobile/

Posted by Marie Sudki at 13:13
Oil Spill issues - Samuel Arey (LMCE)

Professor Samuel Arey (LMCE), Joint Assistant Professor (EPFL, Environmental Engineering Institute and Eawag, Department of Environmental Chemistry) was interviewed by the Swiss TV on the mechanisms and possible impacts of April 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill which is causing extreme damages to the environment in the Gulf of Mexico and the nearby American shores, at the least.

A first scientific expedition was been launched to take water samples and collect data. These will be sent to EPFL to S. Arey's lab for analyzes and other research developments.... 

The Swiss TV first channel, TSR's 18 June's evening news: http://www.tsr.ch/video/info/journal-19h30/#id=2129842

Posted by Marie Sudki at 12:59
8th Swiss Geoscience Meeting, Fribourg November 2010

The 8th edition of the Swiss Geoscience Meeting will focus on the contribution and the importance of climate in Earth's history as well as on the latest advances in research in geosciences. It will be held 19th to 20th November 2010 in Fribourg.

The Department of Geosciences of the University of Fribourg and the Platform Geosciences of the Swiss Academy of Sciences -SCNAT- cordially invite you to participate in the 8th Swiss Geosciences Meeting (SGM2010) to be held this year in Fribourg.

On Friday 19th, keynote presentations will focus on this year's theme "Hot and Cold: Extreme Climates in Space and Time". The first two invited speakers, James Zachos, UC Santa Cruz and Paul Hoffman, Harvard University, are distinguished experts on extreme climates in the past. The third speaker Hubertus Fischer, University of Berne, will present actual climatic changes in polar regions. Practical aspects of extreme climates encountered by professional geoscientists will be addressed by John M. Reynold from Reynolds International Ltd.

On Saturday 20th, a series of scientific symposia will focus on diverse domains of geoscience research encompassing the hydrosphere, the lithosphere, the cryosphere, the biosphere and the atmosphere without neglecting to also address the anthroposphere and the noosphere.

The SGM wants to offer the ideal environment to also foster informal contacts and discussion between scientists: Such opportunities will occur at the Swiss Geoscience Party on Friday evening, or during the poster session on Saturday in the main hall of the congress centre. Special time slots will be allocated to two poster sessions, at which the authors will be present.

Deadline for abstract submission is Friday September 3rd, 2010.
Depending on the number and subjects of submitted abstracts, we may merge existing sessions or create new ones.
Abstracts will be categorised following the indications of the authors on the abstract submission form.

Abstracts should be submitted electronically following instructions on the SGM2010 website http://geoscience-meeting.scnatweb.ch/sgm2010.
The conveners of each session will organise oral and/or poster presentations.

Deadline for registration is Friday October 15th, 2010.
Registration should preferably be done electronically following the instructions on the SGM2010 website. Registration fee is SFr. 50.- (SFr. 30.- for students /PhD students).


We kindly invite you to submit abstracts for oral presentations or posters addressing the following subjects:

  1.   Structural Geology, Tectonics and Geodynamics. (O.S.)

  2.   Open Session in Mineralogy-Petrology-Geochemistry

  3.   Himalayan Geology: A tribute to Augusto Gansser on his 100th anniversary

  4.   Paleontology and Paleobiodiversity

  5.   Lithostratigraphic units for the swiss geological maps: state of the art

  6.   Natural Hazards and Risks in Alpine Geology

  7.   Geomorphology (Open Session)

  8.   Quaternary Research (Open Session)

  9.   Trusting on soils in a changing world? (O.S.)

 10.  Open Cryosphere Session

 11.  Meteorology and Climatology (O.S.)

 12.  Phenology and Seasonality (O.S.)

 13.  Earth System Science related Earth Observation (O.S)

 14.  Geoscience and Geoinformation - From data acquisition to modelling and visualisation

 15.  Decision oriented modelling of the geosphere

 16.  Hydrological and Limnological Perspectives in Times of Global Changes

 17.  Groundwater and Climate change

 18.  Troubling water: modes of socialization of a natural resource (O.S.)

 19.  The global / local in our research

 20.  Geotopes and Geoparks

 21.  Mars: water, climate & geology



Several prizes will be awarded at the SGM mostly to young geoscientist. Amongst others the «CHGEOL Award» will go to the most relevant contribution to applied geosciences (see informations and application form attached). For other award descriptions & application deadlines, please see on the SGM homepage under INFORMATION -> Prizes & Awards

Detailed information on this venue can be found on:


Looking forward to seeing you in Fribourg !
The SGM 2010 Organizing Committee

Posted by Marie Sudki at 7:57
Faculty position in Geo-Engineering (CO2 Sequestration)

EPFL's School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering seeks a Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Geo-Engineering focusing on CO2 Sequestra­tion.

The future success of CO2 sequestration in deep, geologically secure formations, either on-shore or off-shore, remains un­certain due to numerous technical, engi­neering and scientific challenges. The challenges include, basic understanding of the physico-me­chanical and biogeochemical processes involved, the role of geological controls on long term storage, methods of locating sites and monitoring their per­formance, technology development, and combined storage and hydrocarbon re­covery.

We seek applications from highly quali­fied engineers and engineering scientists committed to a career in research and teaching. Applications are welcomed from all the disciplines pertinent to CO2 se­questration, including, but not limited to, geological, geo­chemical, environmental and civil engi­neering. The successful applicant will have potential for developing a research profile characte­rized by novel accomplishments, com­petitive grant funding and an interdiscipli­nary, collaborative vision. A broad vision of geo-engineering is sought, as is the ability to collaborate across disciplines.

Successful candidates are expected to ini­tiate independent research pro­grams and participate in undergra­duate and graduate teaching. Substantial start-up resources will be available. We offer inter­nationally competitive salaries and bene­fits.

Applications should include a résumé with a list of publications, a concise statement of re­search and teaching interests, and the names and addresses (including e-mail) of at least four referees. Appli­cations should be submitted electronically to 
professeurs.epfl.ch/page85628.html - Deadline: 15 May 2010, when formal screening of applications will begin.

Informal enquiries may be made to: byProfessor D. Andrew Barry - mailto: andrew.barry@epfl.ch

Additional information about EPFL is avail­able at
http://www.epfl.ch, http://enac.epfl.ch

Posted by Marie Sudki at 10:13
International Symposium on Ecohydrology at EPFL, 17-20 October 2010

The 2010 Latsis Symposium will take from 17 to 20 October 2010 at EPFL, in the beautiful city of Lausanne and will explore the interface between Ecology and Hydrology in our changing environment.

The organizing committee invites you to participate at Latsis 2010 to share your recent findings and discuss research at the forefront of Ecohydrology.

For information, the Latsis Symposium is an interdisciplinary intermediate-size research conference on ecohydrology and sustainable water resources use. The conference will bring together international experts and young researchers in the fields of surface hydrology, soil and plant ecology, environmental complexity, water resource management, in a setting highly suitable for scientific discussion and interaction (which has become typically impossible at large scale conferences). We are inviting leading scientists in traditionally separated fields. The conference will also be an invaluable means to establish communication and collaboration between group leaders and promising young researchers (including PhDs and postdocs). There will be ample room for scientific interaction between scientists. This conference will be the stage for intensifying and strengthening links between the different disciplines and to bridge the gap towards the fields of hydrology, ecology, engineering and complex system science.

Flyer : documents.epfl.ch/groups/l/la/latsis2010/www/pdf/LATSIS_flyer.pdf

1 May 2010 : Abstract Poster submission
1 June 2010 : Acceptance notification
1 September 2010 : Poster submission

1 June 2010 : Registration Open
15 September 2010 : Registration Closed:

Organizing committee
Marc Parlange (ENAC-EPFL)
Andrea Rinaldo (ENAC-EPFL)
Anne Nolin (ENAC-EPFL and Oregon University, USA)

Posted by Marie Sudki at 10:13
International "Green Talents" Competition 2010

Are there “Green Talents” among your readers?

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is calling for talented young scientists from around the world specializing in the area of sustainable development to apply for the competition “Green Talents – The International Forum for High Potentials in Sustainable Development”.
Under the patronage of the German Federal Research Minister Professor Annette Schavan, the competition will give 15 exceptional young scientists the opportunity to meet and exchange views with today’s leading experts in Germany. The winners of the competition will participate in a ten-day international science forum taking place in autumn 2010. A special focus will be on the “Science Year 2010 – The Future of Energy”, announced by the BMBF due to the global importance of this area. Touring through Germany, the “Green Talents” will visit leading universities, research institutions and companies active in the field of sustainable development. They will gather specific information about research activities on site and learn about opportunities for cooperation with German partners. The forum will also include individual meetings with experts and an opportunity for the “Green Talents” to present their own research – as well as several cultural events and the award ceremony at the BMBF Forum “Research for Sustainable Development” in Berlin.

During the year following their participation in the “Green Talents Forum”, the winners of the competition will be invited to return to Germany for an additional research stay (up to three months). Funding will be provided by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

Germany strives to take global responsibility by promoting sustainable development. The country's innovative power in this area makes it a strong R&D partner for international research groups, especially from developing countries and emerging markets. Researchers in Germany and throughout the world already benefit from numerous lively collaborations. The German Federal Government wants to further increase this exchange, especially with young scientists. That is why the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) launched the international “Green Talents” competition in 2009.

Application documents should be submitted to greentalents@dlr.de by 20 June 2010. Further information on the competition and application guidelines are provided on the “Green Talents” website: www.greentalents.de

Please find attached a leaflet with all the relevant information on “Green Talents”.

Posted by Marie Sudki at 13:25
A new SNF grant for ARVE (GR-KAP)

Professor Jed Kaplan and his group were successful in getting a SNF grant (funding for a PhD) for a project entitled "The MACCHIA project 'Reconstructing human induced land-cover change during the Holocene"


The land cover of the Mediterranean region is thought to have undergone considerable transformation in the 10,000 years since the last Ice Age, but the cause, extent and impact of this transformation is poorly known. The MACCHIA project is a new SNF funded program that will attempt to answer a long standing scientific question; How has land cover changed in the Mediterranean, and what has this meant for both climate and society since the establishment of civilization?  

The Mediterranean region has a long history of land exploitation for agriculture, fuel and construction going back through the Classical Roman and Greek periods to some of the Worlds earliest complex societies over 6000 years ago. Overprinted on these human impacts are also natural climatic changes that have also resulted in changes in forest composition and distribution. The relative role of these natural and human factors in land cover change remains a source of debate, but is critical in understanding the long-term stability and sustainability of the natural landscape, and the development and impact of early human societies prior to the Industrial revolution. Some of the Worlds earliest environmental problems are thought to have occurred in the Mediterranean as a direct result of deforestation and erosion due to human action. There is also an increasing awareness of how humans may also have been able to change the climate itself through land cover change, as a result of biophysical and biogeochemical feedbacks to the atmosphere.

The MACCHIA project will provide the first comprehensive attempt to reconstruct pre-historical land cover change throughout the Mediterranean. This will be achieved using a new and novel technique that links a traditional pollen-based approach with land suitability and dynamic vegetation modelling. Pollen preserved in lake and bog sediments provides a unique source of information on past land cover change, but only for the immediate region of the lake site. Suitable sites are widely scattered however, and many are remote from the fertile and well-drained lowlands where early farming and land clearance was most likely concentrated. The MACCHIA project will overcome these problems by using a modeling approach to infer the land cover between the pollen sites, taking into account changing climate and soils, as well as the likely intensity of human impact. The resulting detailed maps of land cover change will allow us for the first time to directly quantify the role of land cover change in human history, and in relation to climate feedbacks.

Posted by Marie Sudki at 14:13
New Travel Grants SCNAT+ for Master Students

The academy of natural sciences (SCNAT+) provides travel grants to young junior scientists.

Our grants are particulary aimed at Master students who can apply for funding for their fieldwork. Detailed information can be found in the flyer as well as from the website mentioned in the document.

Prof. Dr. Peter Nagel
Chair commission for travel grants SCNAT+

Posted by Marie Sudki at 15:49
Prof. Vera Slaveykova appointed Editor

IIE is happy to announce that Professor Vera Slaveykova has been elected Editor to the Environmental Science and Pollution Research Journal where she is in charge of topics related to "Inorganics, Metals and Inorganic Nanomaterials".

Posted by Marie Sudki at 15:11
DISAL partner of huge NCCR on Robotics

DISAL (Distributed Intelligent Systems and Algorithms Laboratory) is one of the participating laboratory in the NCCR-ROBOTICS (all the others at EPFL are STI; ETHZ, USI-SUPSI, UNIZH, EMPA are also part of the consortium).


"A rapidly aging population requires technology that increases their autonomy and mobility well into old age—the demand for these kinds of robots will surely increase. This center will develop interactive “helper” robots, a new generation of intelligent machines that perform tasks for people in their everyday environments and safely co-exist with them. And while most of today’s robots are designed according to engineering concepts used for manufacturing plants, they are not optimal for building robots that have to perform in a home environment. To achieve the grand goal of developing helper robots, fundamental breakthroughs in technology, materials, and control methods will be required. An NCCR constitutes an ideal and timely platform for creating the desired synergies bearing the potential of a quantum leap in robotic technology and further strengthening Switzerland’s already strong international position and visibility in human-oriented robotics. The NCCR will capitalize on the Swiss tradition in micro-engineering, precise manufacturing, and human-friendly technology, creating tremendous opportunities for knowledge and technology transfer at a point in history when developing robots with a human orientation is in a situation strategically similar to that of the nascent personal-computer industry 30 years ago...."

More information on: www.edi.admin.ch/aktuell/00705/00724/index.html

Posted by Marie Sudki at 12:51
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