PhD Towards climate friendly flight: understanding the underlying chemistry and physics of the climate effects of aviation (LR19.44)

Updated: 27 days ago

PhD Towards climate friendly flight: understanding the underlying chemistry and physics of the climate effects of aviation

Department/faculty: Faculty Aerospace Engineering
Level: University Graduate
Working hours: 38.0 hours weekly
Contract: Temporary. 4 years
Salary: 2325 - 2972 euros monthly (full-time basis)

Faculty Aerospace Engineering

The faculty of Aerospace Engineering at Delft University of Technology is one of the world's largest faculties devoted entirely to aerospace engineering. In the Netherlands it is the only research and education institute directly related to the aerospace engineering sector. It covers the whole spectrum of aerospace engineering subjects. In aeronautics, the faculty covers subjects ranging from aerodynamics and flight propulsion to structures and materials and from control and simulation to air transport and operations. In astronautics, topics include astrodynamics, space missions and space systems engineering. The faculty has around 2,500 BSc and MSc students, 214 PhD candidates and 27 professors supported by scientific staff.

The faculty's mission is to be the best Aerospace Engineering faculty in the world, inspiring and educating students through modern education techniques and enabling staff to perform ambitious research of the highest quality for the future of aerospace. The working atmosphere at the faculty is friendly, open-minded and dedicated.

The mission of the Department of Control and Operations is to improve the safety and efficiency of operations in aerospace and to reduce the impact on the environment. The department comprises three sections: Control and Simulation, which focuses on the development of advanced automatic control systems (including the role of the human operator), Air Transport Operations, which aims to improve operational performance in terms of capacity, safety and economy, and Aircraft Noise and Climate Effects, which focuses on reducing aircraft noise, emissions and the effects of aviation on climate change.      

Job description

Aviation is a strong and growing sector, which guarantees long-range mobility. However, it also contributes to global warming. Emissions from aircraft increase the atmospheric concentrations of e.g. carbon dioxide, ozone, water vapour, and particulates. Another very important effect is the formation of contrails, which also contribute to climate change. For most of these effects a sound understanding of the underlying physical and chemical processes has been developed in recent years, and estimates on their climate impact are available. However, there is one big area of uncertainty, which relates to the impact of emitted aerosols, e.g. soot, on clouds. Aerosols impact cloud formation, but also their optical properties and lifetime.

Your research, which is embedded in the European project ACACIA, includes the analysis of transport pathways and processes along these pathways to better understand the interaction of atmospheric transport with cloud micro-physics and atmospheric chemistry. It also aims to identify regions, which are more and less climate sensitive to eventually guide air traffic management towards reducing the climate impact of aviation.   


The candidate should have a Master's degree in an area relevant to the subject, e.g. atmospheric sciences, (applied) physics, (applied) chemistry, or aerospace engineering. A combination of good mathematical/analytical skills and advanced programming skills with a strong interest in interdisciplinary work is advantageous for this position.   

Conditions of employment

TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. You will have 232 hours of paid leave each year and in addition to your salary, at TU Delft you will receive an annual holiday allowance of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% of your salary. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

Information and application

For information about this vacancy, you can contact Prof. dr. Volker Grewe, Professor, email: [email protected] .

For information about the selection procedure, please contact Dr. Irene Dedoussi, Assistant Professor in the section Aircraft Noise and Climate Effects, email: [email protected] .

The application shall include a detailed CV, 2 reference contacts, proof of English language level and copies of your BSc and MSc degrees and transcripts along with a motivation letter. These documents should be compiled into a single pdf file named lastname_firstname.pdf which will be sent to [email protected] . When applying for this position, please refer to the vacancy number LR19.44 in the subject of your email.

If your MSc diploma and transcript are not in Dutch or English and you will be the selected candidate, the TU Delft will ask you to deliver a certified translation.

Enquiries from agencies are not appreciated.

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