PhD in Underwater Robotics and Sensors in Marine Archaeology

Trondheim, Norway
May 13, 2020
End of advertisement period
Jun 02, 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

About the position

The NTNU University Museum is seeking a highly qualified, ambitious and motivated candidate for a PhD position in marine archaeology and technology.

This position is a fixed term, full time (100 %) position for 3 years starting 1 September 2020. 

The PhD candidate will be part of an interdisciplinary research collaboration between the Department of Archaeology and Cultural History, NTNU Applied Underwater Robotics Laboratory (AUR-Lab) and the Center for Autonomous Marine Operations and Systems (AMOS) at the Department of Marine Technology.

The PhD candidate will have access to AUR-Lab infrastructure, which includes several AUVs and ROVs with a range of different sensors.

The purpose of this PhD project is to contribute with new methods and knowledge towards a better integration of technology and marine archaeology, a strategic goal of the University Museum. The candidate must be prepared to participate in cruises and operations at sea.

Our research has civilian objectives. However, equipment restricted by export licenses and ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) is being used in the research areas listed above. Applicants that are citizens of Norway, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, EU or NATO countries are eligible. Other applicants are required to provide evidence of eligibility to use such equipment for their application to be considered.

You will report to Head of Department.

Project outline

Your application must include a short outline (max 3 pages) describing your research interests within the field of marine archaeology and technology. Your chosen field of research should be aligned with one or more of the following topics:

  • underwater robotics in marine archaeology
  • applied sensor fusion
  • autonomy
  • method development in deep water archaeology
  • underwater cultural heritage in the Arctic

The outline should suggest research questions you want to pursue, their relevance, and the theoretical and methodological approach you plan to follow. This outline is part of the application assessment. Applicants are required to justify their candidateship by explicitly explaining their personal motivation and academic aptitude for pursuing a doctoral degree within this research field (general applications will not be considered). During the first three months of the employment period, you will develop your proposal to a final research proposal in cooperation with your supervisors. The successful PhD candidate will be supervised by an interdisciplinary research group.

Duties of the position

  • follow the PhD study according to NTNU expectations and regulations
  • publish scientific work in relevant journals and at conferences.
  • complete a PhD thesis within 3 years.

Required selection criteria

The PhD-position's main objective is to qualify for work in research positions. The qualification requirement is that you have completed a master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic background in marine technology/archaeology or other relevant disciplines, or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. Master students graduating summer 2020 can apply. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic foundation. If you are unable to meet these criteria you may be considered only if you can document that you are particularly suitable for education leading to a PhD degree.

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.

Excellent English skills, written and spoken, are required. Applicants from non-European countries where English is not the official language must present an official language test report. The following tests can be used as such documentation: TOEFL, IELTS or Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) or Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE). Minimum scores are:

  • TOEFL: 600 (paper-based test), 92 (Internet-based test)
  • IELTS: 6.5, with no section lower than 5.5 (only Academic IELTS test accepted)
  • CAE/CPE: grade B or A.

Personal characteristics

  • strong analytical skills
  • strong ability to express research work and results in English, both written and orally
  • flexible and dependable
  • collaborative
  • highly motivated and hard working

Academic results, outline, work or research experience, personal qualifications and motivation will be considered when evaluating the applicants.

We offer

Salary and conditions

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 479 600 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years.

Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to a PhD programme at Faculty of Humanities or Faculty of Engineering at NTNU within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.

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. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

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

About the application

The application must be submitted electronically through with:

  1. Preliminary research outline
  2. CV including a list of publications
  3. Copies of both Bachelor and Master degrees
  4. Copies of publications or other relevant scientific work authored by the applicant
  5. Copies of transcripts (including copies of documentation on English language proficiency test for non-English applicants, if available)
  6. Contact information for at least two references willing to provide letters upon request
  7. A statement/cover letter detailing how this position would match the interests, experience and career plan of the applicant.

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

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. 

Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation.

Please submit your application electronically via 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.

General information

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.

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

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.

If you have any questions about the position, please contact researcher Øyvind Ødegård,

If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Renate Lillian Johansen, e-mail:

Application deadline: 02.06.2020

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Archaeology and Cultural History

Our most important field of research is cultural history and cultural heritage, technology and methods of spatial analysis, and conservation in practice. In terms of the Cultural Heritage Act, we conduct archaeological surveys and excavations both on land and in water. Heritage management duties also include preservation and curation of cultural heritage archives and collections. We conduct extensive dissemination and outreach, and educate archaeologists in cooperation with the Department of Historical Studies. The Department of Archaeology and Cultural History is one of two departments at the NTNU University Museum. 

Deadline 2nd June 2020
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Project
Place of service Kalvskinnet

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