UHI North Highland is one of twelve academic partners and research centres that make up UHI. This unique partnership allows us to deliver further and higher education programmes at our Thurso, Halkirk, Dornoch and Alness campuses.

To support our work we are recruiting to the following role:

Research Fellow - Renewable Energy & the Environment

Salary range £31,066 - £33,641 (Postdoctoral Researcher) £36,467 - £39,420 (Research Fellow)
Duration2 year fixed-term
Working hours35 hours per week
Closing Date12pm, Monday 12th June 2023

Located in Thurso, on the north coast of Scotland, the ERI is close to many outstanding marine energy resources with excellent proximity to marine energy sites for research and innovation opportunities. Sustainable use of these wind, wave and tidal stream resources is key to achieving ambitious Scottish and international renewable energy targets.

The ERI’s ‘Energy’ research team comprises students and researchers, working across engineering, ecology, oceanography, marine sensing and robotics, and collaborating with an array of regional, national and international partners. We are now seeking to recruit a Research Fellow: Renewable Energy and the Environment to join our multi-disciplinary team to investigate ecosystem effects of offshore wind energy.

The ‘Physics-to-Ecosystem Level Assessment of Impacts of Offshore Windfarms’ PELAgIO project is investigating ecosystem effects of offshore wind by observing and modelling over a range of physical and biological scales, using a combination of autonomous platforms, robotics, ships and satellite observations.

UHI’s focus is developing and deploying autonomous multi-sensor platforms using hydroacoustics to measure fish (prey), with analysis alongside oceanographic and hydrodynamic data collection. The aim is to explore impacts of offshore wind infrastructure and wind energy extraction on levels of mixing, understanding ensuing changes to nutrient density, oxygen levels and plankton productivity.

Identifying connections between changes to plankton productivity and water column characteristics will improve the accuracy of predicted behaviour and therefore availability of pelagic prey species (sandeels, clupeids, mackerel) to top predator (marine mammals, seabirds) foraging opportunities. In turn, this will inform models of the impacts of these changing foraging opportunities and changes in geographical distribution.

The researcher will benefit from the purpose-built ‘Centre for Energy and the Environment’, comprising modern offices, instrumentation and electronics laboratories, workshops, and access to the Pentland Firth via ERI’s research boat ‘Aurora’.

Informal enquires can be made to Dr Benjamin Williamson, leader of the ERI’s ‘Energy’ research group: benjamin.williamson@uhi.ac.uk

Appointment will be initially 2 years (subject to probationary period) with the possibility to extend or transition to an open-ended position, subject to funding.

Interested in applying? Please download an application pack (a CV alone will not be accepted, but may accompany your application) and send to NHCHR@uhi.ac.uk


If you have any queries about the application process please contact NHCHR@uhi.ac.uk - our postal address is:

Human Resources Team
UHI North Highland
Ormlie Road
KW14 7EE