PhD student in Concrete Structures

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 18 Feb 2023

We are looking for a Ph.D. student who will study the long-term performance of steel-reinforced concrete with cement to major extent replaced by natural pozzolans. Your work will contribute to the development of novel, sustainable, composite materials for the built infrastructure of tomorrow, durable to cope with future climate effects. You will get experience from the combination of non-invasive imaging based experimental methods combined with state-of-the-art modelling.

Project description
In the research project “Materials for the infrastructure of tomorrow”, we will integrate experimental characterisation and predictive modelling in 4D (3D+ time). The aim is to characterise and model the long-term performance of steel-reinforced concrete with cement largely replaced by natural pozzolans. We will study the carbonation process with related shrinkage and microcracking, influencing chloride ingress and in turn steel corrosion and crack development. Imaging instruments at large facilities will be strategically combined with lab-based experimental methods more readily available, for 4D monitoring of the life-cycle performance. Further, we will implement constitutive models in a multiphysics finite element analysis approach. The experimental imaging data will be used to populate image-based models at multiple scales. Carbonation with related shrinkage and microcracking will be modelled on micro-level, while the swelling effect of corrosion and subsequent cracking will be modelled on meso-level.

Information about the division and the department
The research will be done in the research group Concrete Structures, which is part of the Division of Structural Engineering at the Department of Architecture and Civil Engineering , in collaboration with the research groups Building Materials and Geotechnics at the same department. The research group Concrete Structures is internationally well-known for its expertise in assessment of existing reinforced concrete structures, with special focus on reinforcement corrosion. Other focus areas are the use of innovative materials in concrete such as fibres and textiles, and industrial construction.
This recruitment is connected to the Wallenberg Initiative Materials Science for Sustainability (WISE, WISE, funded by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation, is the largest-ever investment in materials science in Sweden and will encompass major efforts at Sweden's foremost universities over the course of 10 years. The vision is a sustainable future through materials science.

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Major responsibilities
Your major responsibility will be to carry out the PhD project and to conduct research in concrete structures. You will have the opportunity to influence the details of the research towards the needs of the project, with the possibility to combine experimental work with theoretical modelling. As a doctoral student, you will participate in doctoral courses and be involved in teaching activities. You will develop your skills in communicating scientific results, both to the public and industry and through scientific publications to the research community.

As a Ph.D. student you are employed by Chalmers and will receive a salary according to current salary agreements. The position is limited to maximum 5 years. A maximum of 20% of your time will be required for carrying out departmental duties, mainly teaching of undergraduate courses. The remaining time will be spent on your own courses and research, and you are expected to obtain a Ph.D. degree within 5 years (nominal time without department duties is 4 years).

 A suitable background is a Master of Science (Swedish: civilingenjör) corresponding to at least 240 higher education credits in Civil or Structural Engineering, or an equivalent degree. You have a good knowledge of concrete structures and enjoys both experimental and modelling work. Good knowledge of structures and materials is required, and a specialization in concrete structures and building materials is meritorious. A sound knowledge of structural engineering and nonlinear finite element analysis, and experience of data processing and scripting, e.g. by the use of Python or Matlab, is recommended.

You are expected to work relatively independently (although you will be a part of a research environment with several other researchers and Ph.D. students). You have an ability to plan and organize your own work, to work in collaboration with others, and to be able to communicate your scientific results in English.

Contract terms
Full-time temporary employment. The position is limited to a maximum of five years.

We offer
Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the coastal city of Gothenburg .
Read more about working at Chalmers  and our benefits  for employees.

Chalmers aims to actively improve our gender balance. We work broadly with equality projects, for example the GENIE Initiative on gender equality for excellence . Equality and diversity are substantial foundations in all activities at Chalmers.

Application procedure
The application should be marked with Ref 20230026 and written in English. The application should be sent electronically and be attached as PDF-files, as below. Maximum size for each file is 40 MB. Please note that the system does not support Zip files.

CV:(Please name the document: CV, Family name, Ref. number)
• CV
• Other, for example previous employments or leadership qualifications and positions of trust.
• Two references that we can contact.

Personal letter:(Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, Ref. number)
1-3 pages where you:
• Introduce yourself
• Describe your previous experience of relevance for the position (e.g. education, thesis work and, if applicable, any other research activities)
• Describe your future goals and future research focus

Other documents:
• Copies of bachelor and/or master’s thesis.
• Attested copies and transcripts of completed education, grades and other certificates, e.g. TOEFL test results.

Please use the button at the foot of the page to reach the application form. 

We will evaluate all candidates after the deadline. We will not prereview applications sent by email, thus please ensure that you have provided all required information through the online application system.

Application deadline: 18 February, 2023

For questions, please contact:
Professor Karin Lundgren, Concrete Structures
e-mail:, +46 31 772 22 56

Assistant Professor Arezou Baba Ahmadi, Building Materials , +46 31 772 11 61

*** Chalmers declines to consider all offers of further announcement publishing or other types of support for the recruiting process in connection with this position. ***

Chalmers University of Technology conducts research and education in engineering sciences, architecture, technology-related mathematical sciences, natural and nautical sciences, working in close collaboration with industry and society. The strategy for scientific excellence focuses on our six Areas of Advance; Energy, Health Engineering, Information and Communication Technology, Materials Science, Production and Transport. The aim is to make an active contribution to a sustainable future using the basic sciences as a foundation and innovation and entrepreneurship as the central driving forces. Chalmers has around 11,000 students and 3,000 employees. New knowledge and improved technology have characterised Chalmers since its foundation in 1829, completely in accordance with the will of William Chalmers and his motto: Avancez!

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