PhD position: coupled partial differential equations Fusion Energy

DIFFER (Dutch Institute for Fundamental Energy Research) is one of the NWO institutes and focuses on a multidisciplinarily approach of the energy research combining physics, chemistry, engineering and materials science. The institute is based on two main strands, solar fuels for the conversion and storage of renewable energy and fusion-energy as clean and unlimited source of energy. DIFFER is developing and supporting a national network on fundamental energy research and is closely collaborating with academic institutions, research institutes and industry.

PhD position: Developing controllers for a physics-based model of the L-H transition in a tokamak

Research:

Both the heat exhaust problem (how to remove heat from the core) and core transport (how to reduce heat losses) in nuclear fusion reactors are governed by sets of coupled partial differential equations (PDEs). Hence, for improving both the core plasma and reducing the heat exhaust these coupled PDEs play a crucial role and need to be modelled, estimated, and controlled.

In this project, the candidate is expected to analyse and identify relevant coupled PDEs for transport problems in fusion reactors and what its relevant parameters are. The project encompasses analysis, system identification, and control of coupled PDEs. There are different directions possible such as identifying only one PDE and treat its coupling as a non-linear input or directly analysing and controlling coupled PDEs relevant for nuclear fusion.

The PhD project will be carried out at DIFFER and at the Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands, and involves frequent contacts with our (inter)national collaborators.

Scientific aim: 

This position is part of the strategic programme "Taming the Flame", which aims to enhance our understanding of the physics of power exhaust of tokamak fusion reactors, and to develop advanced control strategies for high-performance, low wall load operation.

Responsibilities and tasks: 

In this project, the candidate is expected to analyse and identify relevant coupled PDEs for transport problems in fusion reactors and what its relevant parameters are. The project encompasses analysis, system identification, and control of coupled PDEs. There are different directions possible such as identifying only one PDE and treat its coupling as a non-linear input or directly analysing and controlling coupled PDEs relevant for nuclear fusion.

Qualifications: 

We seek enthusiastic and highly talented candidates that are willing to work in an international and interdisciplinary team of theoretical and experimental physicists and control scientists. The applicant should have a Master degree (or an equivalent diploma giving access to doctoral studies). A solid background on control engineering and partial differential equations is required. Moreover, the candidate must have an affinity with nuclear fusion preferably with some knowledge on actuators and sensors.

Employment conditions: 

When fulfilling a PhD position at NWO, you will get the status of junior scientist. You will have an employee status and can participate in all the employee benefits NWO offers. You will get a contract for four years. Your salary will be up to a maximum of 2,834 euro gross per month. The salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8 percent and an end-of-year bonus of 8.33 percent. You are supposed to have a thesis finished at the end of your four year term with NWO. A training program is part of the agreement. You and your supervisor will make up a plan for the additional education and supervising that you specifically need. The conditions of employment of NWO are laid down in the Collective Labour Agreement for Research Centers, more exclusive information is available at this website (www.NWO-i.nl) under Personnel.

Further information: 

The NWO Recruitment code applies to this position. At DIFFER we believe that a workforce diverse in gender, age and cultural background is key to performing excellent research. We therefore strongly encourage applications from women and minorities. In our institute physicists, chemists, engineers and other specialists work together in multidisciplinary teams to accelerate the transition to a sustainable society. DIFFER’s workforce is currently composed of 150 scientists (of which 60 guests and interns), supported by 40 technicians and 30 support staff members. The global nature of the energy challenge is apparent from the international representation of our employees, who originate from over 30 different countries. To strengthen our commitment to diversity, in January 2018 we formed a taskforce with the aim to design, implement, and monitor diversity and gender equality initiatives. Further information on the vacancy is available through the leader of the fusion energy department, Prof. Dr. M. R. de Baar (+31 (0)40 3334 952), e-mail: m [368] r [368] debaar [28] differ [368] nl

Application procedure: 

In case you are interested you can apply by submitting an application letter, a grade list and full resume. Please refer to vacancy 17.004. The letter of application and other documents may be sent electronically as single PDF-files (in the following format lastname_appl.letter_17.004, lastname_CV_17.004, etc), to vacancies [28] differ [368] nlI

Closing date: 
Friday, June 30, 2017
Vacacany number: 
17-004