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Job ID: 198567

Post-doc N2O emissions from agriculture - REF 22PDR179
University de São Paulo

Date Posted Nov. 4, 2022
Title Post-doc N2O emissions from agriculture - REF 22PDR179
University University de São Paulo More About This Institution...
Campinas, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Department Soil and Plant Nutrition Biorenewable National Lab (LNBR)
Application Deadline Nov. 20, 2022
Position Start Date February 2023
  • Post-Doc
  • Plant Genetics
    Environmental Science & Ecology
    Biosystems Engineering
    Agronomy/Plant & Soil Sciences
    Agricultural Extension
    Agricultural - General

Project title:

Use of synchrotron tomography as strategy to elucidate N2O production pathways in tropical soils


Research theme area: 

N2O emissions from agriculture



N2O emissions play a fundamental role in the process of mitigating climate change. Understanding the mechanisms that regulate N2O emissions from agricultural soils is crucial for establishing effective mitigation strategies. N2O is a potent greenhouse gas produced mainly by the addition of nitrogen sources (synthetic and organic. Several factors, such as the addition of nitrogen and carbon, soil microbiota, soil porosity and oxygenation level, define the production of N2O through the nitrification and denitrification pathways. The adoption of integrated crop-livestock (ICL) systems represents the strategic incorporation of a forage crop (mainly Brachiaria) in traditional agricultural systems. Recent studies have observed that Brachiaria has an extensive root system and increases soil porosity through the formation of biopores. Based on these statements, we hypothesized that the adoption of ICL systems increases the pore network and improves soil physico-hydric conditions, and consequently modifies the main N2O production pathway. The objective of this project is to elucidate the mechanisms of N2O production in areas under ICL system and conventional agriculture. For that, the following specific aims were established: i) quantify N2O emissions from soil in a controlled environment; ii) decipher how soil pore network characteristics (total porosity, pore size distribution, connectivity, and tortuosity) and the soil physico-hydric conditions govern N2O emissions using synchrotron tomography techniques; iii) identify correlations between N2O emissions and pore network characteristics. For the conduction, incubation experiments will be carried out in a controlled environment and the evaluation of the characteristics of the pore network will be carried out by X-ray computed microtomography at Mogno beanline (Sirius). Additionally, the results of this research will be integrated with other project activities, such as activities of molecular biology and nitrogen isotopes techniques, to elucidate the main routes of N2O production in tropical soils under agricultural cultivation. The candidate will collaborate with researchers from the project NBS A2.2 of the FAPESP-Shell Research Centre for Gas Innovation of POLI-USP at the University of São Paulo. Summary of the program and projects can be found at the RCGI website (



The applicant will contribute in line with the main objectives of the project:
1. to quantify the soil greenhouse gas emissions in integrated agricultural systems;
2. to decipher the main mechanisms of N2O emissions in tropical under integrated agricultural systems;


Requirements to fill the position:

- This project would be well-suited to a highly motivated candidate and requires X-ray tomography imaging skills, experience in soil science, particularly involving the carbon and nitrogen cycles. Oral and written communication skills in English will be essential.
- The postdoc candidate should hold a PhD in Agronomy, Biology, Physics or correlated areas.


Funding Notes:

This Postdoc fellowship is funded by FAPESP. The fellowship will cover a standard maintenance stipend of R$ 8,479.20 (Reais) per month.
Work place: Brazilian Center for Research in Energy and Materials (CNPEM)/ Campinas, Brazil


Position: Post-Doctoral REF: 22PDR179 AND APPLICATION AT REF 22PDR179 – Post Doctoral


Please reference in your cover letter when
applying for or inquiring about this job announcement.

Contact Information

  • RCGI
    Human Resources
    University De São Paulo
    Av Prof Mello Moraes, 2231
    Cidade Universitaria - Butanta
    Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo 05508-030


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