PhD Candidate within the area of floating structures for the next generation of ocean industries

Updated: 3 months ago
Deadline: 01 Feb 2022

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About the position

The Department of Marine Technology  has a vacancy for a PhD candidate focusing on floating structures for the next generation of ocean industries. For a position as a PhD Candidate, the goal is a completed doctoral education up to an obtained doctoral degree.

This PhD project is part of the newly established Centre for Research based Innovation SFI BLUES. The centre aims to develop new knowledge and technology that will contribute to solving the industrial and societal challenges the world is facing. The ambition is to enable Norwegian industry to create new types of floating stationary structures, which will satisfy the needs and requirements from renewable energy, aquaculture, and coastal infrastructure. The Centre is led by SINTEF Ocean, with research partners NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology), the Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI) the Norwegian Meteorological Institute (MET) and SINTEF Industry. The Centre involves more than 10 national and international industrial partners. 

Job description:

The focus of the PhD project is floating membrane structures for the support of solar panels or aquaculture closed cage systems. The membranes are made of flexible polymeric materials that will deform statically when exposed to current loads and dynamically when subjected to waves. The connections to buoyancy elements   and stiff solar panels must be carefully designed as stress concentrations will be introduced, potentially violating the lifetime performance of such structures.


The objective of the PhD is to define a multiscale modelling approach that can accurately describe the connection behaviour between soft membrane and stiff components for application in offshore flexible structures with focus on:

  • Describing and develop understanding of the critical failure mechanisms of the membrane connections.
  • Understand the mechanical behaviour of the membrane and develop numerical models that transform global load effects into local responses that can be applied to evaluate the governing failure mechanisms.
  • Develop  constitutive models for the connections that can be applied for efficient global analysis.

The above may require laboratory testing, detailed Finite Element (FE) analysis and formulation of constitutive models that e.g., by Artificial Neural Network (ANN) approaches.  

The PhD will work in a group with other PhDs in SFI BLUES working on membrane structures with respect to global modelling approaches and  hydrodynamic load models, laying the foundation for optimised design of membranes structures in the future.

You will report to your Supervising Professor and The Head of the Deparment.


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