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HPC Manager Science, CIMES

Princeton University Published: November 4, 2021
Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, 300 Forrestal Road, Princeton, New Jersey
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The Cooperative Institute for Modeling the Earth System (CIMES) is offering an exciting opportunity to an ambitious individual to help advance groundbreaking computational earth system science research using High Performance Computer (HPC) systems. Princeton University's Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences (AOS) Program is hiring a Manager Science (HPC-MS), working also with Princeton’s Institute for Computational Science and Engineering (PICSciE), including its Research Software Engineering (RSE) Group.

The HPC-MS position reports directly to the CIMES director and is (i) responsible for the management and further development of the HPC resources and activities at CIMES; and (ii) develops novel and innovative initiatives and projects to advance CIMES' scientific mission to be a leader in the area of Earth System Modeling.

The MS liaises closely with the NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) and Princeton faculty to identify promising research areas and projects with potential and synergies where CIMES may provide cutting-edge, high-impact research that complements existing strengths of GFDL and Princeton University. The MS develops and implements novel and innovative approaches (including, but not limited to online resources, workshops, expert panels) to accelerate Earth System research.

The HPC resource management will include developing, implementing and tracking project prioritization, assessing and enhancing system utilization, planning for future HPC and storage resource acquisitions, and ensuring that resource utilization aligns with the strategic goals of CIMES. These computational resources include a multi-petaflop computational platform, petabyte-scale storage resources, and a software environment for the configuration, running, and analysis of some of the world’s leading weather and climate models developed at GFDL.

The HPC-MS will work with a designated HPC systems administrator to develop, manage and maintain the workflow and policy for running Earth system models on the CIMES Princeton computing clusters. The HPC-MS will work with CIMES, PICSciE and collaborators at GFDL to ensure that models needed by CIMES scientists in their research are available on the CIMES computational hardware, and that a workflow for efficient parallel execution of these models and data archiving is in place.

AOS and CIMES are a core element of Princeton University’s research and teaching in the areas of understanding, simulating, and predicting the evolution of the Earth’s climate system and weather. You will be joining a vibrant community determined to push the limits of Earth System science, and your contributions will be critical to achieve this objective through fostering collaborations and leveraging synergies between Princeton University and GFDL.

Appointment is for two (2) years with the possibility of renewal pending satisfactory performance and continued funding.


  • Lead management responsibility for ensuring success of the CIMES computing system, such as implementing priorities for different projects, tracking the throughput of projects, reallocating resources between projects, interfacing with PICSciE to troubleshoot and correct workflow issues, and for implementing the longer-term strategic vision of CIMES computing.
  • Interfacing between CIMES, PICSciE and GFDL, and updating CIMES leadership on computing operations and personnel.
  • Preparing reports and presentations for funding agencies, as well as general communications about the projects for larger audiences.
  • Ensuring that all data and software contracts and restrictions are enforced and compliant.
  • Working and collaborating with software engineers, data engineers and scientists to ensure that knowledge of current and future software development tools and techniques, programming languages, and high-performance computing hardware are maintained.
  • Managing and leading a group of HPC software/data engineers and designated systems administrator.

Essential Qualifications:

  • A PhD is required, ideally in the climate sciences or related discipline.
  • Extensive experience working in academic or other research environments.
  • A minimum of five (5) years of experience leading a research group working on climate modeling.
  • Ability to manage and lead technical staff both through direct supervisory relationships and indirectly.
  • Project management and staff supervision ability and experience.
  • Ability to work in large collaborative projects both in supporting and in leading roles.
  • Ability to work independently.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills including high level of flexibility/adaptability to the changing needs of a research environment.
  • Open, creative, and receptive to new ideas and approaches while working and communicating effectively with colleagues
  • Knowledge of high-performance computing, software development processes, and large data analysis.

Application Instructions:  Applicants must submit the following: (1) cover letter, (2) a curriculum vitae, (3) a description of relevant research experience and motivation/interest in the current position (1-page maximum), and (4) contact information (including telephone numbers and e-mail addresses) for three professional references.

This position is subject to the University's background check policy.

Princeton University is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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