PhD Position on Measurement of Crossflow Instabilities on Swept Wings

Delft University of Technology, Netherlands is inviting applicants to apply for a PhD position in aerospace engineering. Applicants should apply as soon as possible.

The faculty of Aerospace Engineering at Delft University of Technology is one of the world’s largest faculties devoted entirely to aerospace engineering. In the Netherlands it is the only research and education institute directly related to the aerospace engineering sector. It covers the whole spectrum of aerospace engineering subjects. In aeronautics, the faculty covers subjects ranging from aerodynamics and flight propulsion to structures and materials and from control and simulation to air transport and operations. In astronautics, topics include astrodynamics, space missions and space systems engineering. The faculty has around 2,700 BSc and MSc students, 225 PhD candidates and 27 professors supported by scientific staff.

The faculty’s mission is to be the best Aerospace Engineering faculty in the world, inspiring and educating students through modern education techniques and enabling staff to perform ambitious research of the highest quality for the future of aerospace. The working atmosphere at the faculty is friendly, open-minded and dedicated.

The Faculty has a reputation for excellence in education and research, and works closely with other reputed knowledge institutes and aerospace industry. Reseach and education cover the full range of topics in the aerospace technology domain.

The Aerodynamics Section forms part of the Faculty's Department of Aerodynamics, Wind Energy, Flight Performance & Propulsion (AWEP).

The Aerodynamics Section is responsible for the education and research in aerodynamics, with attention to both the fundamental aspects of aerodynamics as well as its application to aerospace vehicles. The Section has an experimental and a computational half. The former has a number of outstanding wind tunnel facilities (low and high speed), the latter are leaders in uncertainty quantification, data assimilation, fluid-structure interaction, and LES amongst other numerical techniques.

Delay of laminar-turbulent flow transition on aircraft wings can potentially reduce aerodynamic drag by up to 15%, reducing emissions and fuel consumption considerably. The main cause of laminar-turbulent transition on commonly used swept wings is the development of crossflow (CF) instabilities. Despite their importance, our fundamental understanding of CF instabilities is limited due to inability of current measurement techniques to capture their complex and multi-scale spatio-temporal features.

This PhD position is part of the European Research Council (ERC) – funded project GLOWING, which aims at measurement, understanding and control of crossflow instabilities for drag reduction. We are looking for an enthousiastic candidate, which will work within a team of PhD and PostDoc researchers, all adressing parts of the GLOWING project. This PhD position will deal with advanced spatio-temporal measurements of CF instabilities in our low turbulence windtunnels. The measurement techniques will involve (but not limited to) tomographic velocimetry.

We are a young and growing team of enthousiastic researchers. We offer a stimulating and open-minded environment where PhD candidates can develop their experimental and theoretical skills and pursue cutting edge research, using state-of-the-art facilities. Our team works closely together, investigating all aspects of laminar-turbulent transition, using experimental, theoretical and numerical techniques.

We are looking for an enthousiastic and creative candidate with a MSc (or equivalent) degree in Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering, Applied Physics or related disciplines. Basic knowledge of flow measurement techniques such as PIV and HWA, as well as data acquisition and processing software (LabView, Matlab, Tecplot) are a plus. Female candidates are especially encouraged to apply, and in case of equal qualification they will be preffered

TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children's Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. You will have 232 hours of paid leave each year and in addition to your salary, at TU Delft you will receive an annual holiday allowance of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% of your salary.

As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Dr. Marios Kotsonis, Assistant Professor, phone: +31 (0)15-2785904, e-mail:

To apply, please send an application letter by e-mail, a curriculum vitae, transcripts of BSc and MSc degrees, copies of BSc and MSc diplomas, proof of language skills if applicable, and the names of two references to Ms. C.J.J.Russo,

When applying, please refer to vacancy number LR18.38.


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