PhD Student in Machine Elements (MSCA COFUND project PRISMAS)

Updated: 3 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 30 Oct 2023 - 22:00 (UTC)

2 Sep 2023
Job Information

Luleå University of Technology
Research Field

Engineering » Mechanical engineering
Researcher Profile

First Stage Researcher (R1)

Application Deadline

30 Oct 2023 - 22:00 (UTC)
Type of Contract

Job Status

Is the job funded through the EU Research Framework Programme?

H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions COFUND
Reference Number

Is the Job related to staff position within a Research Infrastructure?


Offer Description

Luleå University of Technology is in strong growth with world-leading competence in several research areas. We shape the future through innovative education and ground-breaking research results, and based on the Arctic region, we create global social benefit. Our scientific and artistic research and education are conducted in close collaboration with international, national and regional companies, public actors and leading universities. Luleå University of Technology has a total turnover of SEK 1.9 billion per year. We currently have 1,840 employees and 17,670 students.

In the coming years, multi-billion investments will be made in large projects in Northern Sweden to create a fossil-free society both nationally and globally. Luleå University of Technology is involved in several of these cutting-edge research projects and in the societal transformation that they entail. We offer a broad range of courses and study programmes to match the skills in demand. We hope that you will help us to build the sustainable companies and societies of the future.

At the Division of Machine Elements  the research is primarily focused on tribology and its applications. The research group today consists of around 50 researchers and doctoral students and is one of the leading tribology research groups in Europe. In the group, there is a state-of-the-art lab facility, Tribolab, including a polymer processing lab where it is possible to apply dry and wet chemistry in preparing polymer blends and composites, to consolidate using consolidation methods, such as injection molding, compression molding, and 3D printing. State-of-the-art thermomechanical characterization, mechanical and custom-made multidirectional pin on disc to study polymer-tribology are available within the group. The research at Division of Machine Element is both fundamental and applied and often takes place in close collaboration with Swedish and international industry.

At the division, we have many active research projects in questions related to tribo-materials, friction and wear mechanisms of experimentally designed functional polymeric-based materials for different applications such as hydropower and energy sector, automotive and EV, biomedical applications and others.

PRISMAS - PhD Research and Innovation in Synchrotron Methods and Applications in Sweden – is a new doctoral network training the next generation of 40 leading synchrotron experts and is co-funded by the Horizon Europe MSCA COFUND Programme.

As a PRISMAS PhD student, you will have the chance to conduct cutting-edge research in your field, taking advantage of state-of-the-art tools that will lead to attractive future job opportunities in academia or industry. Moreover, you are part of designing the future of synchrotron technology and instrumentation and using these to tackle some of the most significant global challenges the world faces today while acquiring interdisciplinary and intersectoral knowledge. Furthermore, you will at the same time take an active part in the green industrial transition that currently is on-going in the northern part of Sweden. Being part of the PRISMAS programme gives you the one-of-a-kind experience in form of a secondment at the world´s first 4th generation synchrotron, MAX IV in Lund, Sweden. With a tailored training programme, including courses to build scientific and technical competence as well as strengthen transferrable skills, PRISMAS provides you with the skills, knowledge and competence needed to successfully achieve your doctoral degree.

Project description
The goal of this project is to understand the wear mechanism of polymeric based material at macroscale, with support of polymer physical behavior at nano and micro-scale.

Opening a new era in tribology:  In this project, we will develop a new rheometer - tribometer setup combined with small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering, which we will refer to as Rheo-Tribo-SWAXS, at ForMAX. This research project aim is to address the fundamental mechanisms behind “abrasive and adhesive” polymer wears. In short, this research projects objectives are: 

  • A novel rheo-tribometer in combination with small- and wide-angle X-ray scattering will be developed to study polymeric physical behavior (elastic and plastic deformation) under tribological condition. 
  • At first, the aim is to establish the operational condition of the new measuring setup.
  • Novel polymeric-based materials will be processed/manufactured in our labs. 
  • The mechanical and thermo-mechanical properties of these novel composites will be characterized carefully.
  • The Tribological characterization (wear and friction behavior) of newly developed polymer composites will be studied.  
  • Polymer physical characteristic relationship to the wear mechanisms will be investigated using data from thermomechanical, tribological and the developed Rheo-Tribo-SWAXS, at ForMAX. 
  • The successful candidate will interact closely with the three different groups involved in the project. The project is a cooperation between Luleå University of Technology – Division of Machine Elements, Chalmers University of Technology - rheology and MAX IV - scattering.

    As a PhD student you are expected to perform both experimental and theoretical work within your research studies as well as communicate your results at national and international conferences and in scientific journals. Most of your working time will be devoted to your own research studies. In addition, you can have the opportunity to try the teacher role. As a researcher, you work as a neutral party in many contexts, which provides a great opportunity to be involved in challenging development projects.

    The training implies a secondment of 3-12 months at MAX IV laboratory in Lund, Sweden. Additional secondments and/or short stays may be arranged in agreement with the supervisor of the research project. Moreover, you will attend international conferences, participate in periodical project meetings and training schools as well as in specialised courses at different universities to complement your knowledge.  A certain amount of travelling is foreseen in relation to these activities.

    To comply with the mobility rule of the MSCA COFUND programme, you are eligible if you have not resided in Sweden for more than 12 months during the period 2020-10-30 to 2023-10-31 for work or studies as main occupation.

    By the employment date (before March 1, 2024) you must have completed courses of at least 240 credits, of which at least 60 credits are from second-cycle courses, have been awarded a Master´s degree in Engineering Physics, Material/Polymer Science, Polymer Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering or related fields or have acquired largely equivalent knowledge in some other way, in Sweden or abroad. Of these at least 60 credits should be second-cycle courses related to one or several of the following topics Polymer Rheology, Tribology, Material Mechanics, Physics and Experimental Techniques. Experience of multidimensional metrology, rheology, Tribology and/or X-ray techniques is a merit. Applicants should also have good knowledge in written and spoken English.

    The position is a full-time, fixed term employment for four years, forseen to start on March 1, 2024. Admission to the doctoral studies takes place at the respective University. Place of employment: Luleå. The holders of these positions have a primary obligation to successfully fulfil their postgraduate (third cycle) education ending with a doctoral degree (PhD). A position as doctoral student can contain some limited teaching or other departmental work, the maximum amount of such work is 20%.

    The MSCA COFUND project PRISMAS offers you outstanding opportunities as well as a stimulating and inspiring surrounding for performing cutting-edge research. Supporting your mobility, it creates perfect conditions for strengthening your international network. This project is in close collaboration with Professor Roland Kádár team at Chalmers University, as well as Anton Paar as industry partner. 

    For further information about the position, please contact Professor Nazanin Emami, +46 920-49 1939,

    For complete vacancy announcement please visit

    In case of different interpretations of the English and Swedish versions of this announcement, the Swedish version takes precedence.

    Closing date for applications: October 31, 2023
    Reference number: 2952-2023

    Research Field
    Education Level
    Master Degree or equivalent


    Research Field
    Engineering » Mechanical engineering
    Years of Research Experience

    Additional Information
    Work Location(s)
    Number of offers available
    Luleå University of Technology
    Postal Code
    Luleå University of Technology

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