PhD Stipend in Mechanical Engineering: Analysis and design of wind turbine blades with prefabricated carbon fiber subcomponents (915-21040)

Updated: 29 days ago

PhD Stipend in Mechanical Engineering: Analysis and design of wind turbine blades with prefabricated carbon fiber subcomponents (915-21040)

At the Faculty of Engineering and Science, Department of Materials and Production a PhD stipend in Mechanical Engineering is open for appointment from 15 August 2021 or soon hereafter. Department of Materials and Production (MP) is a wide-ranging research and educational environment at Aalborg University. The Department's mission is to meet the future's demands for new materials and production systems by directing the whole value chain from basic material understanding, materials' applications in mechanical constructions, industrial production, and management. The department has several strong, international, and innovative research groups which comprise everything from basic science to strategic and applicable research. The activities encompass research as well as education within materials, mechanics, physics, production technique, and industrial management and innovation. Benefitting the industry and additional collaborators several innovative and unconventional collaborations have been and are developed through interdisciplinary co-operations. Thereby, as an employee at the department, you will become a part of an international research environment, where the focus is on innovation, knowledge sharing/building, and interdisciplinary collaborations.

Job description

The PhD project is a part of the project “Affordable and Innovative Manufacturing of Large Composites” which is funded by Innovation Fund Denmark. Aalborg University is an active partner and will besides this PhD position have a full-time postdoc and four part-time researchers on the project. The role of Aalborg University in the project is focused on design, testing, and damage analysis of modular pre-cast wind turbine blade subcomponents. This is an important contribution to securing the structural performance and integrity of the entire wind turbine blade.

In this context, the tasks assigned to this PhD position involve the development of a new modular design concept using prefabricated carbon fiber subcomponents. An experimental campaign should be carried out where a selected design concept is loaded to failure. These results will then be used as a basis for the formulation of a predictive model which will be implemented in a finite element framework. Finally, this model will serve as the basis for a detailed design optimization where the design concept is configured to a given user case.

For all the before-mentioned the ideal candidate should hold documented skills in modeling and analysis of laminated composite materials, programming, finite element analysis, fracture mechanics, cohesive zone modeling, progressive damage/fracture simulation during quasi-static or repeated loading, experience with fracture and fatigue-related experiments.

We are looking for a candidate who is a fast learner, has an excellent analytical mindset, is self-driven, and has good collaborative skills. Please describe how you fit these personality characteristics, preferably with the aid of examples demonstrating this. Good dissemination skills in oral and written English are required.

Semester project supervision and teaching tasks within the general area of mechanical engineering can to a limited extent be expected to be handled by the PhD student.

You will join a research group with several PhD students, post-doc researchers, and professors, which gives a good opportunity for inspiration, sparring, and academic discussions. We have a friendly and supportive working environment, believing that this is the best way to ensure world-class scientific results.

The PhD scholarship includes a competitive salary where university fees and course participation fees are fully covered. The project also covers the cost associated with travelling, participation in scientific conferences, and an external research stay at another university for 3-6 months. All relevant IT and laboratory costs associated with the tasks to be carried out in the position are also covered. When employed in Denmark you are covered by the Danish health insurance. We can also provide guidance on how to re-locate to Aalborg, Denmark.

The supervisors in the PhD project will be Professor Erik Lund and Associate Professor Brian Lau Verndal Bak.

You may obtain further professional information from Associate Professor Esben Lindgaard, Department of Materials and Production, phone +45 3033 4668, email: .

The application must be written in English and must include the following:

  • A cover letter describing the motivation for applying to the position.
  • A Curriculum Vitae including education qualifications, research and industrial experience, awards and fellowships, any additional scientific achievements.
  • A list of publications.
  • A copy of the Master’s certificate (or equivalent).
  • An official transcript of the completed subjects and grades achieved in the course of the Master’s programme.
  • A description of the research as envisioned by the candidate.

PhD stipends are allocated to individuals who hold a Master's degree. PhD stipends are normally for a period of 3 years. It is a prerequisite for allocation of the stipend that the candidate will be enrolled as a PhD student at the Doctoral School of Engineering and Science in accordance with the regulations of Ministerial Order No. 1039 of August 27, 2013 on the PhD Programme at the Universities and Certain Higher Artistic Educational Institutions. According to the Ministerial Order, the progress of the PhD student shall be assessed at regular points in time.
Shortlisting will be applied. This means that subsequent to the deadline for applications the head of department supported by the chair of the assessment committee will select candidates for assessment. All applicants will be informed whether they will be assessed or not.
For further information about stipends and salary as well as practical issues concerning the application procedure contact Ms. Ruth Klitte, The Doctoral School at The Faculty of Engineering and Science, email: ,  phone: +45 9940 7993.
For more information of The Doctoral School of Engineering and Science:  

The application is only to be submitted online by using the "Apply online" button below.
AAU wishes to reflect the diversity of society and welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background or belief.


Appointment and salary as a PhD fellow are according to the Ministry of Finance Circular of 28 June 2019 on the Collective Agreement for Academics in Denmark, Appendix 5, regarding PhD fellows, and with the current Circular of 11 December 2019 on the employment structure at Danish universities.

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