Two PhD positions in the field of chemical fingerprinting and reactive multiphase flow in cement

Updated: 26 days ago

Individual research projects

The Danish Hydrocarbon Research and Technology Centre (DHRTC), Technical University of Denmark (DTU), invites applicants for two PhD positions in the field of chemical fingerprinting and reactive multiphase flow in cement. These two positions are closely linked within the same project and is part of a larger project portfolio relating to safe and sustainable abandonment of oil wells in the Danish North Sea Chalk reservoirs. DHRTC was established by the Danish Underground Consortium and DTU in 2014 as part of a national strategy for energy, the research Centre is an ambitious, targeted effort to improve recovery of hydrocarbons from the Danish North Sea sector. When the oil field approach the end of the production lifetime, the procedures of abandoning and safely closing the wells poses challenges to the materials involved. DHRTC has initiated a research program with a focus on solutions to the techniques and materials required to seal abandoned wells and the monitoring of closed wells.

Project 1 – Characterization of crude oil tracers by fingerprinting
This project will focus on the detailed chemical characterization and identification of specific compounds which can be used as tracers for hydrocarbon leaks in cement structures in wells. The chemical analysis will performed by spectroscopic techniques (IR and UV) and high resolution mass spectrometry (2D GC-TOF-MS and LC-HRMS) and other analytical techniques. The interaction between fluids and cement will be tested in conditions in flow experiments in the laboratory.

Project 2 - Reactive multiphase flow in cement
The project will utilize coupled simulations to address the fate and transport of multiphase flow from reservoir to well top side. The model will consist of a complex reaction network considering microbial activity and cement-steel-water-hydrocarbon and chemical interactions. The main purpose is to study the relevant processes that may occur during the transport of fluids from reservoir or overburden layers to the surface through annulus of the well.

Qualifications – PhD 1 Characterization of crude oil tracers by fingerprinting
Candidates should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree in environmental, physical or analytical chemistry or similar fields.

Exceptional skills and interest in physical, organic  and analytical chemistry;

  • Experience with and interest in experimental chemistry;
  • Experience from MSc level with chromatography,  mass spectrometry, IR spectroscopy, chemometrics and separation techniques
  • Strong interest in applied research;
  • Ability to work in a multi-disciplinary environment;
  • Excellent writing and communication skills in English;

Qualifications – PhD 2 Reactive multiphase flow in cement

  • M.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Physics, Applied Mathematics,  Earth / Environmental Sciences or other relevant areas;
  • Knowledge of the fundamentals of reactive flow and transport in porous media (e.g. cement) and wells;
  • A good knowledge of geochemistry is very valuable.
  • Practical experience with scientific programming languages and laboratory work are desirable
  • Ability to work in a multi-disciplinary environment as an independent researcher;
  • Good writing and communication skills in English;

Applicable for all scholarships

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarships for the PhD degree are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide .

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here .

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Senior Researcher Karen Feilberg, email: and Hamid Nick, email:  

Please do not send your application by email.

You can read about the scientific basis for the centre’s activities here:

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark .

Please submit your online application no later than 24 August 2021 (Danish time).

Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here )
  • Research statement and names and addresses of three references

Please do not include additional documents such as published articles/reports, and copy of course certificates.

In the field “Please indicate which position(s) you would like to apply for”, please indicate your preference of the two advertised PhD projects (title from the above list of PhD projectsor individual research projects).

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Candidates may apply prior to ob­tai­ning their master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

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DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 12,900 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.

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