Doctoral student in fusion plasma physics and computational fluid dynamics

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 13 Dec 2021

KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm has grown to become one of Europe’s leading technical and engineering universities, as well as a key centre of intellectual talent and innovation. We are Sweden’s largest technical research and learning institution and home to students, researchers and faculty from around the world. Our research and education covers a wide area including natural sciences and all branches of engineering, as well as architecture, industrial management, urban planning, history and philosophy.

Project description

Third-cycle subject: Electrical Engineering

The understanding of the mechanisms and the consequences of melt motion induced by the impact of transient intense plasma heat fluxes in the presence of strong magnetic fields is of profound importance to the development of tokamak reactors operating with metallic plasma-facing armour.  The MEMOS (Melt Motion at Surfaces) code suite is one of only two computational tools within the global magnetic Fusion Community capable of describing the evolution of molten surface deformation in the harsh tokamak environment. The upgraded code MEMOS-U solves the incompressible resistive thermoelectric magnetohydrodynamic equations together with the heat convection– diffusion equation. 

Although MEMOS-U has been validated against experiments in the largest European tokamaks , transient events in ITER and DEMO will bring forth presently inaccessible plasma-material interaction regimes and new physical processes affecting melt generation and dynamics. This project aims to identify physics processes governing melt production and macroscopic motion in ITER and DEMO, to model and incorporate them in the MEMOS-U code, thus facilitating realistic predictions of gross melt erosion in future fusion reactors.

A PhD candidate is sought to launch the core activities in this effort. The PhD project aims will include; (i) development of the code in terms of the provision of a new interface, allowing easier use by non-experts, (ii) modelling of the key mechanisms driving melt motion in the tokamak environment, (iii) code comparisons with new experiments being conducted and planned within the EUROFusion Consortium,, (iv) application of MEMOS-U to specific ITER scenarios, assisting in the assessment of the required levels of transient mitigation that operation must satisfy.  The candidate is expected to spend some periods of time at the ITER Organization in the course of the project.

Supervision: Prof. S. Ratynskaia is proposed to supervise the doctoral student. Decisions are made on admission

What we offer
  • The possibility to study in a dynamic and international research environment in collaboration with industries and prominent universities from all over the world.Read more
  • A workplace with many employee benefits and monthly salary according to KTH’s Doctoral student salary agreement.
  • A postgraduate education at an institution that is active and supportive in matters pertaining to working conditions, gender equality and diversity as well as study environment.
  • Work and study in Stockholm, close to nature and the water.
  • Help to relocate and be settled in Sweden and at KTH .
  • Expertise in the theory and modelling of multiple facets of plasma-surface interactions.
  • Access to state-of-the-art experimental data from the largest European tokamaks.
  • Access to state-of-the-art plasma profiles expected in ITER and DEMO.

Admission requirements

To be admitted to postgraduate education (Chapter 7, 39 § Swedish Higher Education Ordinance), the applicant must have basic eligibility in accordance with either of the following:

  • passed a second cycle degree (for example a master's degree),
  • completed course requirements of at least 240 higher education credits, of which at least 60 second-cycle higher education credits, or
  • acquired, in some other way within or outside the country, substantially equivalent knowledge

In addition to the above, there is also a mandatory requirement for English equivalent to English B/6, read more here


In order to succeed as a doctoral student at KTH you need to be goal oriented and persevering in your work. During the selection process, candidates will be assessed upon their ability to:

  • independently pursue his or her work
  • collaborate with others,
  • have a professional approach and
  • analyse and work with complex issues.

Preferred qualifications include

  • Familiarity with plasma-surface interactions in the fusion plasma environment
  • Familiarity with standard computational fluid dynamics software (e.g. COMSOL, ANSYS)

After the qualification requirements, great emphasis will be placed on personal competency. 

Target degree: Doctoral degree

Information regarding admission and employment

Only those admitted to postgraduate education may be employed as a doctoral student. The total length of employment may not be longer than what corresponds to full-time doctoral education in four years ' time. An employed doctoral student can, to a limited extent (maximum 20%), perform certain tasks within their role, e.g. training and administration. A new position as a doctoral student is for a maximum of one year, and then the employment may be renewed for a maximum of two years at a time.

Union representatives

You will find contact information for union representatives on KTH's website .

Doctoral section (Students’ union on KTH Royal Institute of Technology)

You will find contact information for doctoral section on the section's website .


Apply for the position and admission through KTH's recruitment system. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the advertisement.

Applications must be received at the last closing date at midnight, CET/CEST (Central European Time/entral European Summer Time).

Applications must include the following elements:

  • CV including your relevant professional experience and knowledge.
  • Application letter with a brief description of why you want to pursue research studies, about what your academic interests are and how they relate to your previous studies and future goals. (Maximum 2 pages long)
  • Copies of diplomas and grades from previous university studies and certificates of fulfilled language requirements (see above) . Translations into English or Swedish if the original document is not issued in one of these languages.Copies of originals must be certified .
  • Representative publications or technical reports. For longer documents, please provide a summary (abstract) and a web link to the full text.

Other information

Striving towards gender equality, diversity and equal conditions is both a question of quality for KTH and a given part of our values.

For information about processing of personal data in the recruitment process please read here.

We firmly decline all contact with staffing and recruitment agencies and job ad salespersons.

Disclaimer: In case of discrepancy between the Swedish original and the English translation of the job announcement, the Swedish version takes precedence.

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