Postdoctoral Researcher Spatial Optimization of a Siren Network (UMRAE - Nantes, France)

Application deadline: Tue 28 Feb 2023

L’Unité Mixte de Recherche en Acoustique Environnementale

The Joint Research Unit for Environmental Acoustics (UMRAE) is a research laboratory shared between

Gustave Eiffel University and the Center for Studies and Expertise on Risks, Environment, Mobility

and Planning (CEREMA). It brings together teams of researchers, engineers, technical staff and

doctoral students from these two organizations to carry out research missions related to reducing

noise and its impact on the environment. The activities of the UMRAE focus on reducing noise and

its impacts in the environment through experimental, numerical, theoretical and interdisciplinary approaches.

Scientific Context

Civil defense sirens are an essential means of alerting the public in the event of rapid-onset natural

or human-made hazards. However, the densification of the siren network is often based solely on

technical constraints. When spatial optimization of their sound coverage is taken into account, the

distance to the siren is often the only factor considered, ignoring the phenomena related to acoustic

propagation such as the influence of terrain or soil type, or masking from surrounding sources like

traffic noise.

In collaboration with Paul Valéry University - Montpellier 3 and LASTIG (IGN-ENSG, Univ. Gustave

Eiffel, EIVP), the UMRAE is working on the audibility of civil defense sirens in urban areas [1,2]. A first

audibility model has recently been proposed and implemented in the open-source tool NoiseModelling


In May 2022, NoiseModelling was technically coupled with the open-source tool OpenMOLE [4]. This

tool allows for the exploration, diagnosis, and calibration of numerical models by taking advantage of

distributed computing environments. This coupling opens up the possibility of developing a methodology

for the spatial optimization of the siren network through the use of pre-implemented genetic

algorithms in OpenMOLE.

Objectives and activities

Based on these tools, the goal will be to develop a methodology for optimizing the number and positioning

of sirens based on an estimate of the alert signal’s audibility by the largest possible number of

people exposed to risks. The person hired will be responsible for developing the methodology and applying

it to a study area. The work done will result in the publication of these findings in a peer-reviewed

scientific journal.

Research framework

The person hired will be based at the Joint Research Unit for Environmental Acoustics (Nantes), but

will also have interactions with Matthieu Péroche (Paul Valéry University - Montpellier 3, specialist

in population evacuation in case of tsunami) and Paul Chapron (LASTIG, IGN-ENSG, Univ. Gustave

Eiffel, EIVP, specialist in the analysis of simulation models). The person will be working in a multidisciplinary

team with the aim of developing a methodology for optimizing the number and positioning of

sirens based on an estimate of the alert signal’s audibility by the largest possible number of people

exposed to risks. The person will have the opportunity to work with state-of-the-art tools and methodologies

and be part of a dynamic and stimulating research environment.

Qualifications and experience required

> Ph.D. or equivalent with at least one publication in a peer-reviewed journal

> Experience related to environmental acoustics or model exploration

> An interest in scientific programming is necessary for this position

> Programming languages such as JAVA, Groovy, Scala

Application process

> Submit a CV, cover letter, and at least one writing sample (preferably a published paper)

> Include the names and contact information of at least two references

> Submit all application materials to


1 Siliézar, J., Aumond, P., Chapron, P., Péroche, M., Can, A. (2022, April). Méthode d’évaluation de

l’audibilité d’un système d’alerte SAIP. In 16ème Congrès Français d’Acoustique.

2 Péroche, M., Siliézar, J., Aumond, P. « Modéliser l’audibilité des sirènes pour optimiser la couverture

du signal d’alerte en cas de tsunami », IRMA.

3 : outil gratuit et open-source développé

à l’UMRAE pour produire des cartes de bruit environnemental sur de très grandes zones


4 : plateforme open-source dédiée à l’exploration de modèles de

simulation, développée à l’ISCPIF

Dowload the document with all the information on the link above.