PhD in Ship Response Prediction for Manuevering in Confined Waters

Ålesund, Norway
07 Dec 2018
End of advertisement period
31 Jan 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

During every maneuvering operation, the environmental situation has to be constantly assessed and the ship response within these conditions has to be predicted. Based on these two key elements, the captain uses his knowledge and expertise, to plan the maneuvering operation and assess the risk for an accident. In modern shipping, these situations have become increasingly demanding.  The increased vessel size has negatively influenced the maneuverability while at the same time the environmental factors that have to be considered grew much more complex.

This motivates the research question of this project: How to use the advanced technological possibilities, to increase safety and provide maneuvering assistance. A better understanding of the harbor scenario and ship behavior is the prerequisite for the development of autonomous harbor maneuvering systems.

Towards this goal, the Department of Ocean Operations and Civil Engineering in collaboration with the Department of ICT and Natural Sciences has initiated a joint project for autonomous docking. Within this project we are announcing one PhD position.

The position reports to head of department.

Job description

For maneuvering in confined water such as water ways, near shore or in a harbor, the boundary conditions change constantly. To predict the ship response during harbor maneuvering, unsteady boundary conditions due to shallow water and banking effects have to be considered. At the same time, efficiency of the propulsion and steering units is altered. 

Furthermore has the wind load and currents a much more severe influence.

These factors motivate the idea for this PhD position:

  • To create a ship response model  for a harbor environment using numerical field methods.
  • The goal is to derive a ship response model that can be incorporated in a control system simulation.
  • To balance the computational effort and the model prediction quality, an uncertainty quantification analysis of the ship flow will be applied.

Qualification requirements

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 computational fluid dynamics, numerical mathematics, marine engineering 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

Other qualifications

  • Proof of programming skills (Matlab, Python, C++, Fortran)
  • Affinity to numerical simulations
  • Documented experience in computational fluid dynamics with commercial or open source software
  • Good written and oral English language skills

Personal characteristics

  • Able to work independently as well as in team
  • Keen interest in the wider context of own research, and an ability to engage in cross-disciplinary 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

Salary and conditions

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

The period of employment is 3 years without required duties. Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to a relevant PhD programme. As a PhD candidate, you undertake to participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period. 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 Henry Piehl, e-mail

About the application:

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 SO-IV-18/19 when applying.

Application deadline: 31.01.19

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 Ocean Operations and Civil Engineering

We aim to be a hub of international knowledge and innovation in maritime operations. This involves education and research on the design of ships and marine equipment as well as on the operation of vessels. Maritime operations integrate technology, human factors and business. The interfaces between these areas often spark inspiration for innovation and new solutions. The Department of Ocean Operations and Civil Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

Deadline 31.01.2019
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Ålesund
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Jobbnorge ID 161102