Phd Candidate in Theory and Molecular Basis of Viscosity of Complex Fluids

Trondheim, Norway
28 Feb 2019
End of advertisement period
27 Mar 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

We have a vacancy for a PhD student in the Materials Group at the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering.  The project is concerned with understanding and modelling the viscosity of complex fluids, particularly polar fluids, ionic liquids, and electrolyte solutions.  Viscosity of fluids arises from the nonlinear interactions between molecules at the nano scale.  The goal of this project is to link these microscopic dynamics to the macroscopic transport properties of the fluid.  To this end, we will make use of both numerical methods, specifically molecular-dynamics simulations, and analytical approaches using kinetic theory.  Along with this, there will be close interaction with experimental and theoretical groups in Trondheim, Stockholm and at Imperial College London.

The focus of this project is on a specific class of complex fluids, namely electrolytes (salts): water-based electrolyte solutions and ionic liquids, which are liquid salts.  These systems are becoming a new frontier in friction research and are very promising for low-friction applications, as demonstrated for instance by the amazing effectiveness with which water-based synovial fluid lubricates our joints. To make full use of these possibilities, we need more general understanding of the transport properties of these complex liquids. The aim of this project is to develop this understanding as well as practical methods for calculating the viscosity and other transport properties.

About the materials group

The materials group deals with applications of materials science: engineering materials and surfaces with desirable properties for specific applications. The group consists of an interdisciplinary mixture of engineers, physicists, and chemists. We have many industrial and international academic collaborations and aim to provide a stimulating environment for PhD students' learning and development.

The position reports to Associate Professor Astrid S. de Wijn

Job description

  • Construct and perform molecular-dynamics simulations of models of complex fluids with various level of detail.
  • Develop new theory for the viscosity of complex fluids and test it against simulations.
  • Compare theoretical results to experimental data.

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 material science, physics, chemistry, or engineering or similar field, 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

  • Experience with modelling on atomic or molecular scales, preferably with Molecular Dynamics or Monte Carlo simulations.
  • Affinity for analytical mathematical modelling and theory.
  • Good written and oral English language skills.

Personal characteristics

  • Highly motivated, with enthusiasm for applied theoretical research.
  • Be able to work both in a research team as well as carry out personal research projects.
  • Good interpersonal skills.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, 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 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 3 years. Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in Engineering:

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 after commencement of the PhD position.

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 Dr. Astrid S. de Wijn, phone number +4773597098, email:

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 within the application deadline. 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 the Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI):

Please refer to the application number IV-106/19 when applying.

Applicants later invited for interview must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters.

Application deadline: 27 March 2019

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 Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

We educate graduates who can create new products, operate and maintain products, and manage projects. The Department has a variety of bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. We conduct wide-ranging research in fields such as technology, energy, product quality and development, and productivity. The Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

Deadline 27.03.2019
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Dep. of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

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