PhD Scholarship Position in Combustion Engines Studying Waste-derived and Biofuels

A new opening PhD position in mechanical engineering is available at Lund University, Sweden. The initial contract for this position is 5 years. Candidates are welcome before February 25, 2019.

LTH forms the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University, with approximately 9 000 students. The research carried out at LTH is of a high international standard and we are continuously developing our teaching methods and adapting our courses to current needs.

The Division of Combustion Engines is a world leading engine research facility focused on engine control, alternative fuels, novel combustion concepts, and fundamental studies in optically accessible engines. It hosts a state-of-the-art engine lab with 12 test cells, and about 30 employees of which 20 are Ph.D. students. The engine research cluster in Lund involves staff from Combustion Physics, Fluid Mechanics, Automatic Control and Heat Transfer totalling more than 50 scientists.

Job assignment

The vast majority of combustion engines today are driven by fossil fuels such as diesel and gasoline which leads to emissions of the greenhouse gas CO2. The European Research & Innovation Action project "BioRen", funded by the European Commission, aims at developing competitive drop-in biofuels for road transport from the organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW).

A higher value fuel is targeted: glycerol tertiary butyl ether (GTBE) is a promising fuel additive to both diesel and gasoline that could improve engine performance and cut harmful exhaust emissions (i.e. particulates). It can be blended in higher amounts than e.g. ethanol, without having to change the engine. Bio-ethanol and bio-isobutanol from OFMSW are required intermediaries in this innovation path towards GTBE. Their specific business case as second generation drop-in fuel will be compared to the bio-GTBE business case. Other project partners (in Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland and Spain) will focus on the development of the production methods, leading to a demonstration treatment plant.

Lund University is responsible for testing the fuels (ethanol, isobutanol and GTBE) in engine tests to provide feedback regarding their performance, emission results and fuel use. This includes: first, testing of blends that fall within the current fuel standards as this is the easiest route to market. Second: testing of higher level blends to see the potential for improved efficiency and reduced emissions. Third: testing of neat fuels. This comprises both light-duty gasoline engines and heavy duty diesel engines, as well as new combustion concepts (such as partially premixed combustion). The obtained results will be studied in detail to link back to the fuel properties, and will be the basis for suggesting the most appropriates routes towards market introduction.

Admission requirements

Assesment criteria

The selection for admittance to the postgraduate studies will be based on the judged ability to successfully finish the same.

The candidate should have a Master of Science degree in mechanical engineering, chemical engineering or engineering physics science, natural science or other similar competence.

Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive and independence, and how the applicant, through his or her experience and skills, is deemed to have the abilities necessary for successfully completing the third cycle programme.

Only those admitted to third cycle studies may be appointed to a doctoral studentship. Third cycle studies at LTH consist of full-time studies for 4 years. A doctoral studentship is a fixed-term employment of a maximum of 5 years (including 20% departmental duties). Doctoral studentships are regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), chapter 5, 1-7 .

Instructions on how to apply

Apply for the position via the link at the bottom of the vacancy notice. Applications shall be written in English, unless otherwise stated, and include a cover letter stating the reasons why you are interested in the position and in what way the research project corresponds to your interests and educational background. The application must also contain a CV, degree certificate or equivalent, and other documents you wish to be considered (grade transcripts, contact information for your references, letters of recommendation, etc.).


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