Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Engineering Cybernetics

Trondheim, Norway
21 Jun 2019
End of advertisement period
01 Sep 2019
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

About the position

The position will be a part of BRU21 – NTNU’s Research & Innovation Program in Digital and Automation Solutions for the Oil and Gas Industry. This is a joint NTNU-industry program with up to 40 PhD/PostDoc positions. The objective of the program is to develop new digital and automation methods and technologies to increase efficiency, safety and environmental care in all operations in O&G activities. The program is organized as a multidisciplinary eco-system across seven departments at NTNU: Geoscience and Petroleum, Engineering Cybernetics, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Computer Science, Information Security and Communication Technology, Sociology and Political Science, Industrial Economics and Technology Management. The research program covers the corresponding multidisciplinary areas of digitalization and automation in the oil and gas industry. Most of the program’s research projects will be linked to specific digitalization/automation cases originating from the industrial partners. Innovation is a vital part of the program.  More information about the research program, as well as NTNU strategy in Oil and Gas research (BRU21 report) can be found on the program website (

The position reports to Professor Morten Hovd at the Department of Engineering Cybernetics, NTNU. However, the Postdoc candidate for this position will also be part of a smaller inter-disciplinary team consisting of BRU21 PhDs, Postdocs and Researchers already focusing on the development of the FieldOpt framework.

Main duties and responsibilities

The Postdoc will have a central role in BRU21. A main responsibility will be maintaining and further developing FieldOpt, an open-source software framework for efficient implementation of advanced simulation-based optimization methodology for both research and industry applications. In general, FieldOpt enhances petroleum field development research by providing extensive capabilities for prototyping, customization and real-case application of novel optimization routines coupled with state-of-the-art reservoir simulators. The software encompasses a bridge between numerical optimization and petroleum engineering. In time, however, the software is also envisioned to expand its simulation-based optimization capabilities to include other engineering disciplines.

BRU21 currently employs several PhD and Postdoc candidates developing optimization methodology for critical aspects of petroleum field development. The Postdoc candidate for this position will work closely with other BRU21 PhDs and Postdocs to facilitate the implementation and knowledge-transfer from the ongoing projects onto the FieldOpt framework. The main goal will be to put the various projects into a larger operational context where links and synergies between the various technologies can be efficiently explored and the time frame and work load required to apply research methodology to realistic cases can be shortened.

Job description

  • Maintenance of the FieldOpt open-source program package.
  • Development of new features and optimization formulations for FieldOpt.
  • Assist other personnel within BRU21 with solving optimization problems for field development.

Qualification requirements

A main objective of a Postdoctoral research fellowship position is to conduct work that can serve as qualification for subsequent academic positions. The current vacancy for a Postdoctoral research fellow requires the completion of a Norwegian doctoral degree in Computer Science, Control Engineering, Applied Mathematics or similar, or a corresponding foreign doctoral degree recognized as equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree.

The appointment will 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

  • Strong skills in computer (object-oriented) programming for mathematical applications.
  • Knowledge of convex and non-convex optimization is highly desired.
  • Knowledge within any petroleum engineering discipline is an advantage.
  • The FieldOpt repository is found at FieldOpt is an in-house open-source software package coded in C++ that currently links, relies-on and executes different types of software packages to enable the various research field development optimization workflows. The list below provides some of the tools FieldOpt uses for pre- and post-processing as well as for running simulations and doing optimization. Knowledge and/or some familiarity with some or any of the packages listed below is a significant advantage, though not essential:
    • OPM ResInsight, OPM Flow, Matlab Reservoir Simulation Toolbox, Eclipse reservoir simulator, ADGPRS, SNOPT-solver for nonlinear optimization, ERT Ensemble-based Reservoir Tool, DAKOTA.
  • Good written and oral English.  Applicants who are not native English speakers and are not from Scandinavia, must provide evidence of English language proficiency by means of one of the following tests:  TOEFL, Academic IELTS, and Cambridge CAE or CPE.  The 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 accepted)
    • CAE/CPE: grade A or B.
  • Fluency in Norwegian will be considered positively.

Personal characteristics

  • The ability to work both independently and in a team.
  • Personal initiative and motivation.

The candidate will be evaluated in terms of the qualification requirements specified in the advertisement. However, in the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience as well as personal and team suitability.

We offer

Salary and conditions

Postdoctoral candidates are remunerated in code 1352, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 523 200 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 2 years.

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 criterias 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.

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 Professor Morten Hovd, phone number +47 91897189, e-mail .

About the application:

Applications are to be submitted electronically through this page ( ). Please refer to the application number 2019/17783 when applying.

The application should contain:

  • A motivation letter (1-2 pages), explaining the applicant’s motivation and suitability for the position.
  • 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.
  • The applicant’s PhD thesis.  Applicants who expect to complete their PhD before the end of 2019 may submit an extended abstract of the thesis (around 10 pages).
  • Publications and other academic works (not more than 10) that the applicant would like to be considered in the evaluation. 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.
  • Names and contact information of at least two references.

Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration.

Application deadline: 01.09.2019.

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 Engineering Cybernetics (ITK)

Engineering cybernetics is the study of automatic control and monitoring of dynamic systems. We develop the technologies of tomorrow through close cooperation with industry and academia, both in Norway and internationally. The Department contributes to the digitalization, automation and robotization of society. The Department of Engineering Cybernetics is one of seven departments in the Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering.

Deadline: 1st September 2019
Employer: NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality: Trondheim
Scope: Fulltime
Duration: Project
Place of service: Trondheim

Similar jobs

Similar jobs