PhD Candidate in Machine-Learning Based predictive Additive Manufacturing

Trondheim, Norway
15 Apr 2021
End of advertisement period
30 Apr 2021
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

NTNU Nanomechanical Lab, Department of Structural Engineering at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is seeking a PhD Candidate in the field of predictive additive manufacturing.

Effective manufacturing is of undeniable importance nationally and internationally. Additive Manufacturing (AM) is regarded as a key enabling technology with the potential of 3D printing any material, any shape and in any fields, without the need for specialized tooling. However, large quality variance, poor process consistency and lack of predictability of properties and performance of printed parts are hindering the wide spreading of the promising technology. There is an urgent need to develop a digital platform which can be used to optimize the AM process parameters based on the predicted properties and performance in real time. In the current state, it might take from hour-days to weeks or months to analyse the deposition process through simulations, depending on the level of details included in the model. It is a fact that the state-of-the-art physics-based models are so computationally demanding and thus cannot be used for any realistic process optimization.

Equipped by more than 20-year experience in studying residual stresses, structural integrity and multiphysics and multiscale modelling, and enriched by the newly learned knowledge of machine learning, we establish this project aiming to move the current state-of-the-art simulation technology of AM one step forward by building a pilot digital twin of a selected AM process which allows, for the first time, real-time prediction of the property and performance of printed parts. It is anticipated that the digital twin will be at least 2 to 3 orders of magnitude faster in accurately replicating the printing process compared to traditional finite element-based solutions.

The PhD candidate will work at NTNU Nanomechanical Lab, chaired by three full time professors, one associate professor and two adjunct professors from the industry. In 2020, there were 18 PhD students and 3 post-doc fellows working in the NTNU Nanomechanical Lab. 

You will report to the supervising professors.

Duties of the position

  • perform excellent and independent research on the topic attached to the position
  • publish in top-ranking journals and conferences
  • interact with the research group where this position will be hosted and also with international leading groups in the same field
  • complete and defend a dissertation 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 mechanical engineering, structural engineering, material science; physics or nanotechnology or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. 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.

  • good written and oral English language skills

Preferred selection criteria

  • experience in and knowledge of machine learning, modelling of additive manufacturing, or finite element modelling of plasticity and microstructures

Personal characteristics

  •  motivated and ambitious
  • ability to work both individually and in a team environment and a high level of personal responsibility
  • excellent communication skills 
  • eager to disseminate research results through publications and presentations at international conferences

We offer

Salary and conditions

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 482 200 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 the PhD programme in Engineering 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.

The position is subject to the condition that the candidate start the PhD study within the end of August 2021.

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

About the application

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

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. 

The application must include:

  • CV, certificates and diplomas
  • Academic works - published or unpublished - that you would like to be considered in the assessment
  • Name and address of three referees

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.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability.

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

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. 

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.

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.

In accordance with The Public 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 Zhiliang Zhang, telephone +47 93001979 , email If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Elin Pedersen Nystuen, e-mail

Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. 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. Please refer to the application number IV-126/21 when applying.

Application deadline: 30.04.2021

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 Structural Engineering

We teach mechanical engineering, engineering and ICT, and civil and environmental engineering. The Department conducts internationally leading research and participates in several large national research projects. The Department of Structural Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

Deadline 30th April 2021
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Gløshaugen

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