PhD in Scalable Power Electronic Topologies for High Energy Physics Experiments

Gløshaugen, Norway
14 Nov 2018
End of advertisement period
11 Dec 2018
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, and the Department of Electric Power Engineering at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) offer a 4-year PhD position. The candidate will spend one year at the Department of Electric Power Engineering at NTNU, Trondheim, Norway and three years at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland. The prospective candidate will be enrolled in the PhD-programme at NTNU.

CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, is an intergovernmental organization with 22 Member States. Its seat is in Geneva but its premises are located on both sides of the French-Swiss border. CERN’s mission is to enable international collaboration in the field of high-energy particle physics research and to this end it designs, builds and operates particle accelerators and the associated experimental areas. At present more than 10 000 scientific users from research institutes all over the world are using CERN’s installations for their experiments.

The Power Electronics Group (EPC) has more than 80 scientific and technical staff and students and has a long history in power electronics development in Europe. The first power converters have been installed in the 1960s to power electro-magnets in the first accelerator, the Proton Synchrotron. Over the last 58 years, while the accelerator complex has been expanding to host the Large Hadron Collider, more than six thousand power converters have been commissioned including the flagship 60MW POPS system with built-in energy recovery.

The position reports to Head of the Department of Electric Power Engineering.

Job description

CERN performs major upgrades of existing converter installations where one of its main objectives is to provide performant solutions to reliably power the physics experiments. While preparing for a major upgrade programme beyond the 2025 horizon, we are looking for the evolution of SIRIUS, our existing modular converter family with an output power rated to one megawatt peak.

The research programme will consider a number of technologies related:

  • Topologies of power modular power converters in general
  • A scalable input (front-end) unit
  • distributed (built-in) or centralized (building) energy storage
  • different energy storing mediums such as super-capacitors, flywheels etc
  • DC power distribution options at the level of facility

We are expecting the doctoral candidate to work with our team of engineers and technicians and to contribute to the discussion with studies and publications as well as with laboratory and prototyping work.

Keywords: magnet supply, current precision, modularity, scalability, ease of maintenance, energy recovery, capacitors, super-capacitors, flywheel, redundancy, semiconductors.

Qualification requirements

PhD candidate:

The PhD-position's main objective is to qualify for work in research positions.The qualification requirement is completion of a master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic background in electrical engineering with a specialization in power electronics or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. Applicants with no letter grades from previous studies must have an equally good academic foundation. Applicants who are unable to meet these criteria may be considered only if they can document that they are particularly suitable candidates 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, postdoctor and research assistant.

See here for regulations concerning appointment and promotion to teaching and research posts:

Other qualifications

Applicants with a laboratory experience on power electronics (design of power electronic converters prototypes, programming of FPGAs and DSPs etc.) will be preferred. Scientific publications in international journals and conferences are merited.

Furthermore candidates should satisfy the CERN requirements for applicants to the Doctoral Programme. A successful application to the Doctoral programme is a condition.

It is required that the applicant are a national of a CERN Member or Associate Member state.

Language requirements:

Applicants must provide evidence of good English language skills, written and spoken. If your first language is not English, the following tests can be used as documentation: TOEFL, IELTS and 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

  • ambitious and self-motivated
  • able to work independently
  • proactive and able to work collaboratively in teams

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, as well as motivation, in terms of the qualification requirements specified in the advertisement

We offer

  • exciting and stimulating tasks in a strong international academic environment
  • an open and inclusive work environment with dedicated colleagues
  • favourable terms in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • employee benefits

Salary and conditions

PhD candidate:

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 449 400 per annum before tax. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 4 years (with 25% duty work).

Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in electrical engineering ( A condition of appointment is that you are in fact qualified for admission to the PhD programme within three months.

Appointment takes place on the terms that apply to State employees at any time, and after the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

General information

Working at NTNU

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background. Under the Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova), information about the applicant may be made public even if the applicant has requested not to have their name entered on the list of applicants.

Questions about the position can be directed to Associate Professor Dimosthenis Peftitsis,

About the application:

The application procedure will be completed in two steps:

  • Application to the University on open until (4 weeks after advertisement)
  • Application to the CERN Doctoral programme is planned for spring 2019. Only the candidate offered the position will be eligible for applying.

The application must contain (all in one combined PDF file):

  • Applicants are required to submit a one-page research proposal within the proposed research area.
  • CV.
  • Certified copies of academic diplomas and certificates.
  • Applicants from universities outside Norway are kindly requested to send a diploma supplement or a similar document, which describes in detail the study and grading system and the rights for further studies associated with the obtained degree.
  • List of scientific publications.
  • Publications relevant to the research scope and any other work which the applicant wishes to be taken into account should clearly state the applicant’s contribution. A short summary should be attached outlining the applicant’s input to joint work.
  • Publications and other academic works that the applicant would like to be considered in the evaluation must accompany the application. Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify the individual applicant's contribution to joint works, the applicant must include a brief description of his or her contribution.

Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applicants invited for interview must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. Please refer to the application number 2018/40211 when applying.

Application deadline: December 11, 2018.

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 Electric Power Engineering

Our department is Norway’s leading university environment in the field, and our vision is to be at the centre of the digital green shift. We have excellent collaboration with business and industry as well as other academic environments internationally. This gives us outstanding opportunities for interdisciplinary research with high relevance to society, while we meet industrial needs and address global challenges at the same time. The Department of Electric Power Engineering is one of seven departments in the Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering.

Deadline 11.12.2018
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Gløshaugen

Similar jobs

Similar jobs