PhD Student

Updated: 2 days ago
Deadline: 15 Oct 2021

Job description

Ghent University (Belgium) is internationally one of the leading institutes in resource recovery and renewable resources. It is home to the BioRefine Cluster Europe, a network of international research and development projects with dedicated focus of guiding innovation towards applied market implementation. As part of an extensive European programme on closing wastewater cycles for nutrient recovery, we are recruiting a junior expert for a PhD degree at Ghent University (Belgium) in frame of the Horizon 2020 WalNUT project.
WalNUT aims to develop the necessary concepts and technological solutions to re-design the value and supply chains of nutrients from wastewater and brine, by applying a wide range of technological processes (physico-chemical, electro-chemical, biological). These technological processes will be validated both on lab and pilot scale. The Belgian pilot is operated (in collaboration with Ghent University) by Aquafin, a wastewater treatment company, with the aim to recover N, P and/or K fertilisers. The produced fertilisers will be tested against the performance of conventional mineral fertilisers, in laboratory and field trial setting. The research topic is part of the broader concept of reusing waste to generate products for a sustainable economy, reducing pollution risk and dependence on imported material resources. Research will be conducted in a setting of transnational collaboration, including potential stays abroad.

We offer

  • Full-time employment for a period of 4 years
  • Being embedded in a team of young dynamic experts from academia and industry
  • Involvement in a European project (Horizon 2020 “WalNUT”) with research partners in Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Denmark, Hungary, Portugal and Belgium with possibility of mobility across partner countries to visit innovative nutrient recovery processes at practical industrial scale
  • An innovative and hot-topic research scope with clear practical applications
  • Close supervision and guidance in conducting the planned research by both UGent and Aquafin
  • The possibility to develop a broad network and perform your research in an industrial setting with a wastewaster treatment company
  • Stimulation to self-improvement by encouraging participation in courses, workshops and conferences
  • Career option (to be discussed with the selected candidate based on mobility/travel interests and research opportunities): for short or longer stays abroad

Job profile

Your profile

  • You are interested in and motivated by the research topic, as well as in obtaining a PhD degree
  • You have mastered the English language, both in writing skills and oral presentations
  • You have the required communicative skills to interact independently with scientific community, business community and farming community
  • You have a relevant degree – Master level in applied biological sciences (agriculture, environmental technology,…)

How to apply

Send (I) CV and (II) motivation letter to: and before Friday October 15th, 17h (Central European Time) (put „WalNUT PHD“ in the email title). Selected candidates will be invited for an interview in the course of October with foreseen to start at the earliest convenience thereafter (based on candidate availability, but as soon as possible from our perspective).

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