PhD candidate within the area of “Energy storage for grid services in HVDC connected offshore wind...

Updated: about 2 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 30 Apr 2021

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About the position

The Department of Electric Power Engineering , has one vacancy (100% positions) as PhD candidate within the area of: “Energy storage for grid services in HVDC connected offshore wind farms". 

This PhD project is part of the newly established FME NorthWind (Norwegian Research Centre on Wind Energy) that has as aim to bring forward outstanding research and innovation to create jobs and grow exports, and to facilitate the sustainable development of wind power. The Centre is led by SINTEF, with research partners NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology), UiO (University of Oslo), NINA (The Norwegian Institute for Nature Research), and NGI (Norwegian Geotechnical Institute). The Centre involves more than 40 national and international industrial partners that, together with the research partners, comprise a world leading consortium for the development of a sustainable wind energy future.  

The prospective candidate will work in the research group Power Electronic Systems and Components (PESC) .

The main supervisor of the PhD candidate will be Prof. Elisabetta Tedeschi.

The position reports to the Head of Department.

Duties of the position

With the European Union setting the ambitious goal of installing 60 GW of offshore wind power by 2030 and 300 GW by 2050, and many other countries embracing similar policies to decarbonizing electricity and supporting a more sustainable society, there is a significant need for technological advances and increased competitiveness to drive the growth of offshore renewable energy and electric infrastructure in the coming years.

Within this context, this PhD project will investigate different options for integrating energy storage into HVDC-connected offshore wind power plants, in order to provide grid ancillary services. 

It will primarily investigate the possibilities to embed or exploit energy storage provided by the different converters in the offshore wind power plant, in relation to the type of grid service required. It will discuss the implications of different alternatives in terms of: 1) storage location (i.e. in the wind turbine, on the collection grid converter -if present-, at the interface with the onshore grid); 2) storage/converter sizing, depending on storage type; and 3) control implementation based on the grid support service to be provided.

The proposed solutions are expected to be validated in a laboratory environment through the Hardware-in-the-Loop approach, reaching the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 4. 

The PhD is foreseen to collaborate with national and international partners, among which SINTEF Energy Research and the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), which will contribute to the co-supervision of the PhD candidate.

The candidate must engage in the FME NortWind activities as required.

Required selection criteria

The objective of the PhD education is to qualify for scientific research of high international standard. The PhD education has a nominal duration of three years of full-time study and includes required coursework or similar academic training comprising a minimum of 30 credits. The most important component of the PhD education is an independent scientific research project carried out under academic supervision, which results in the PhD thesis. The PhD degree is conferred based on these two elements and the doctoral examination, which consists of a trial lecture and a public defence of the scientific thesis.

The candidate is expected to fully complete the course work and the PhD thesis within the period of employment, which could be 3 or 4 years. The doctoral examination may take place after the period of employment. The option of 4-year employment would imply 1 year of duties as teaching Assistant for the Department and may be offered to a candidate with clear motivation and ability for such work, if the Department sees the need. This will be clarified during and after any interview.

The qualification requirement is completion of a master’s degree with strong academic background with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale.

Applicants for the PhD position must hold a M.Sc. degree (or equivalent) within electrical engineering and have a strong background in power electronics control, and good knowledge of basic concepts of power systems stability and operation. Competence on HVDC grid related technology and control, and experience with real-time simulations and Hardware-in-the-Loop testing (especially with OPAL-RT) will be an advantage. 

Relevant scientific publications in international journals and peer-reviewed conferences are merited. 

Applicants for the position are required to submit a one-page research proposal within the proposed research area. 

The PhD project requires excellent analytical and communication skills. 

The applicants for the position must be able to work independently, but also to collaborate with the other project participants and other colleagues at the department.

Other qualifications

Applicants must have very good English language skills, written and spoken. Applicants from non-English speaking countries outside EU/EEA/Switzerland must provide preliminary documentation of English language proficiency, in terms of an approved test. The following tests can be used: TOEFL, IELTS and Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) or Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE).

Further assessment of both written and oral English language skills and the ability to communicate fluently will be conducted in the continued selection process and during any interviews for all applicants.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant.

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA .

Personal characteristics

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability.

  • Be structured, targeted and solution-oriented.
  • The successful candidate will be a team player in a group with the project consortium, professors, researchers, PhDs and scientists from the industrial sector.
  • Self-driven with a strong ability to work independently when required.
  • Proven ability to work with an interdisciplinary team.
  • Have good dissemination skills.
  • Personal skills like a positive and friendly attitude, and contributing to a sustainable social environment will also be valued.

We offer
Salary and conditions

During the employment period at NTNU, the PhD candidate will be remunerated at gross NOK 482 200 per annum. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The employment contract is for three years.

Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in Electrical Power Engineering. Applicants must be qualified for admission as PhD students  at NTNU. 

As a PhD candidate, you will have to successfully complete the PhD academic training programme; the training includes mandatory course work and other obligatory activities. Within the first three months of your employment, you must formally qualify for admission to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering.

The position is fully funded by the Research Council of Norway.

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English.

Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above. 

The application must include:

  • A cover letter where the applicant describes the personal motivation, summarising scientific work, and how the applicant sees her/his background suitable.
  • A draft research proposal (1 or 2 pages) for the PhD study, where the candidate presents her/his own ideas for the PhD-work and how it can be applied, based on the project description given in this advertisement. This proposal will be neither final nor binding for the project.
  • CV (summarising education, positions, pedagogical experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activity).
  • Copies of educational certificates, academic transcript of records and letters of recommendation. Applicants from universities outside Norway are kindly requested to send a diploma supplement  or a similar document, which describes in detail the study programme and grading system.
  • The required documentation of English language proficiency.
  • Names and contact information of at least two references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number).
  • Certified copies of academic diplomas and certificates (both Bachelor and Master)

In assessing the applications, emphasis will be placed on the documented, academic qualifications, the cover letter and the ideas and/or originality of the draft research proposal in shortlisting of candidates. Interviews with the best-qualified candidates will be arranged. 

Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration. 

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU.

The Department of Electric Power Engineering works closely with key players in the Norwegian electricity supply sector, which manage critical infrastructure. A comprehensive risk assessment of the candidates' research interests and potential activities related to national threat assessments will therefore also form basis for the final selection of candidates.

In the final assessment of the candidates also strategic considerations at the Department of Electric Power Engineering will be taken into account.

General information

Working at NTNU

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background. 

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

Information Act (Offentleglova), your name, age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested not to have your name entered on the list of applicants.

Questions about the position can be directed to  Professor Elisabetta Tedeschi  , or to Head of Department Prof. Ole-Morten Midtgård .

Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Diploma Supplement is required to attach for European Master Diplomas outside Norway. Chinese applicants are required to provide confirmation of Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI) .

If you are invited for interview you must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. 

Application deadline: 30.04.21

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