PhD Scholarship at University of Ghent

Applicants are invited to apply for a PhD position at University of Ghent, Belgium. The funding allows successful candidate to work for two years. Applications should be sent before March 01, 2020.

Ghent University is a top 100 university worldwide and one of the major universities in Belgium, with more than 44,000 students and 15,000 staff members. At the department of Electromechanical, Systems and Metal Engineering (ESME), the optimization and control of electromechanical systems is an important research topic. As the share of renewable energy sources in the power system increases, maintaining the power balance between production and consumption becomes more challenging, and the need for grid balancing technologies increases. Ghent University is a research partner in the European Horizon 2020 ALPHEUS project, which investigates the possibility of fast grid balancing by means of large pumped hydro systems with a rated power of up to 10MW. In this project, different innovative and advanced turbine concepts will be investigated. The focus of our research group in this project is on the Power Take-Off (PTO) system, i.e., the drivetrain components, generator, rectifier and machine-side control systems.

As a PhD student within this project, your task is to investigate and develop an optimal control system for the machine-side, i.e., generator, blade pitch and inlet gate control, for the different turbine concepts. This involves modelling the PTO and developing new control strategies in a Matlab/Simulink simulation environment. The research results must be validated both in the simulation environment and on a lab scale test setup of 50kW. Since the research is part of a European Horizon 2020 project, you will collaborate closely with other research groups within the European Union. You are expected to publish your research results in scientific journals and to present your results on international conferences.

The initial contract duration will be one year, in which you are hired as a PhD researcher. The contract can start on the first of April at the earliest. The contract can be extended to a full 4 year PhD research period under the condition of a positive evaluation after the initial period. Ghent University offers an attractive salary with additional benefits, a positive and inspiring working environment and training possibilities. You will work both in the mechatronics research group at the campus Kortrijk and the Electrical Energy Laboratory in the Tech Lane Ghent Science Park in Zwijnaarde.

You can also find a description of the job vacancy on

You have a master of science degree in engineering, preferably in electromechanical, electrical or control engineering. You are motivated, creative and have a passion for academic research. You have an affinity with both experimental research and simulation software. You must be sufficiently fluent in writing and speaking in English. You will work in a positive and international environment where a constructive collaboration with other researchers is expected. Therefore, we expect you to be a team-player and a good communicator.

Send your CV and motivation letter to before the 1st of March 2020. Please include contact details of two referees. If you pass the pre-selection, you will receive further instructions on the selection process and will be invited for a job interview, possibly via Skype. Job interviews will be held in March.


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