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Phd Candidate 2 In The Mission-Ccs Project, An Msca-Doctoral Network For Carbon Capture And Storage

Trondheim, Norway
Closing date
25 Mar 2024

About the job

A position as a Doctoral Researcher in the field of X-ray Computed Tomography applied to carbon capture and storage (CCS) is available at the Department of Physics, NTNU.

We are looking for a PhD candidate for the MISSION-CCS (Material Science Innovation for Accelerated, Sustainable and Safe Implementation of Carbon Capture and Storage) project that will provide a bespoke training environment for 13 Doctoral Candidate Researchers (DCRs), focussed on understanding and mitigating material degradation phenomena across the entire CCS chain. MISSION-CCS is a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Doctoral Network (MSCA-DN) program.

This Ph.D. project (DCR9) will use time-resolved X-ray computed tomography (CT) and complementary techniques, including electrochemistry and machine learning, to monitor the interfacial chemical reactions induced by brine/CO2 under realistic reservoir conditions

Cement and steel are important also for CCS, notably in the transport system bringing the CO2 into the reservoirs and closing off the wellbore. It is crucial that the cement-rock and cement-steel interfaces near the steel pipe remain stable against corrosion when exposed to the CO2 stream. This Ph.D. project (DCR9) will use time-resolved X-ray computed tomography (CT) and complementary techniques, including electrochemistry and machine learning, to monitor the interfacial chemical reactions induced by brine/CO2 under realistic reservoir conditions. Imaging contrast will be achieved using phase contrast, diffraction, and isotopic contrast (for neutrons). An aim is to model the multiscale CO2 induced degradation of cement and steel as a function of exposure time, which we aim to do using big data techniques and physics based machine learning. The project will involve significant experimental efforts using both home laboratory and large-scale facilities (neutron and/or synchrotron sources), and data analysis including computer modelling of coupled thermodynamical and physicochemical processes. 

Secondments to consortium partners including industry partners are integral part of the PhD programme. The project incorporates weekly collaboration with Equinor, Norway and research secondments to the University of Leeds, UK and Schlumberger, UK, adding to the academic scope and the social experience.

Recognizing that many Ph.D. candidates proceed with an industrial career, often in lead positions, we put strong emphasis on being an attractive high-performance arena, which may serve as an academic trainee step between a master’s degree and top positions in both academia and industry. The candidate is expected to participate actively in the group activities, to mentor bachelor and master students, and to contribute to our extensive international network. Moreover, having excellent contacts within the CCS industry, secondment to industry is an integral part of the 3-year Ph.D. program.

Your supervisor team will be Prof. Dag W. Breiby and Dr. Basab Chattopadhyay.

Duties of the position

The candidate will:

  • plan and execute a comprehensive, independent experimental physics research project under supervision. This will involve laboratory experiments, systems integration and data analysis.
  • learn to master academic writing and author journal publications.
  • present her/his work at international conferences and workshops.
  • collaborate internationally.
  • participate in secondments to consortium partners.
  • contribute to the supervision of undergraduate students.

Information about eligibility

The applicant shall, at the time of recruitment by NTNU, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their researchcareers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree. Researchers who have successfully defended their doctoral thesis but who have not yet formally been awarded the doctoral degree will not be considered eligible. Full-time equivalent research experience is measured from the date when a researcher obtained the degree which would formally entitle him or her to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited.

The applicant is required to undertake transnational mobility (i.e. move from one country to another) when taking up his/her appointment. At the time of recruitment by NTNU, the applicant must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host beneficiary for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the reference date. Note that the mobility rule applies to Norway, where the researcher is recruited, and not to co-hosting research groups to which the researcher is sent or seconded.

Required selection criteria

  • The successful candidate has completed/ is about to complete a master's degree in physics or a closely related field, with good grades. Candidates holding a prior degree with an experimental (i.e., laboratory-based) background in CCS will be considered, regardless of degree title.
  • Your education must be equivalent to to a five-year Norwegian degree program, where 120 credits are obtained at master's level
  • You must have a strong academic background from your previous studies and an average grade from the master's degree program, or equivalent education, which is equal to B or better compared with NTNU's grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic basis. If you have a weaker grade background, you may be assessed if you can document that you are particularly suitable for a PhD education.
  • Master's students can apply, but the master's degree must be obtained and documented by 1 July 2024.
  • You must meet the requirements for admission to the faculty's doctoral program.
  • The position requires a strong interest in experimental physics, data analysis and computer programming.
  • The position requires spoken and written fluency in English.
  • The following requirements on qualifications will be given major weight in the evaluation of the candidate. In the cover letter, the applicant must specifically describe his/her expertise in relevant fields like materials physics / chemistry, X-ray physics, microscopy, analysis of large datasets, artificial intelligence & machine learning, computer programming.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, Phd candidate, research assistant and specialist candidate and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) in artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant 

Preferred selection criteria

  • Experience from experiments using microscopy, X-ray methods, or hardware building skills is a desired qualification requirement. Computer programming skills (e.g., Matlab, Python, LabView or C) and hardware building skills are desired, as is basic knowledge of artificial intelligence (AI) and more specifically machine learning (ML) methods.
  • Working knowledge of Norwegian or another Scandinavian language would be evaluated positively.

Personal characteristics

  • highly motivated, independent and enthusiastic
  • strong ability to systematically carry out research tasks
  • enjoy interdisciplinary research
  • keen interest in learning and working in teams
  • good skills to deliver oral and written presentation of research results

Emphasis will be placed on personal and interpersonal qualities.

We offer

Salary and conditions

As a PhD candidate (code 1017) you are normally paid from gross NOK 532 200 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 3 years. Tentative starting date is September 1, 2024.

Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD programme in physics 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. 

The position is subject to external funding from Horizon Europe 2022 Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action (MSCA) for the MISSION-CCS project.

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 be attached to the application. Please note that your application will be considered based solely on information submitted by the application deadline. You must therefore ensure that your application clearly demonstrates how your skills and experience fulfil the criteria specified above.

The application must include : 

  • Cover letter
  • Motivation statement, explaining also the link between this position and the research interests of the candidate
  • CV (summarizing education, positions, pedagogical experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activity)
  • Copies of educational certificates, academic transcript of records and letters of recommendation
  • Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number) 

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both bachelor's and master's education, in addition to other higher education. Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well.

We will take joint work into account. If it is difficult to identify your efforts in the joint work, you must enclose a short description of your contribution.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

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

NTNU believes that inclusion and diversity is our strength. We want to recruit people with different competencies, educational backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to solving our social responsibilities within education and research. We will facilitate for our employees’ needs.

NTNU is working actively to increase the number of women employed in scientific positions and has a number of resources to promote equality. 

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.

A public list of applicants with name, age, job title and municipality of residence is prepared after the application deadline. If you want to reserve yourself from entry on the public applicant list, this must be justified. Assessment will be made in accordance with current legislation. You will be notified if the reservation is not accepted.

You will report to Professor Dag W. Breiby ( , phone: +47 984 54 213) and Research Scientist Dr. Basab Chattopadhyay (, phone: +47 73559085) to whom further inquiries may be directed. If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact HR consultant Magnus Gautvik ( , phone:+47 70161226)

If you think this looks interesting and in line with your qualifications, please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates attached. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Upon request, you must be able to obtain certified copies of your documentation.  

Application deadline: February 25, 2024.


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 Physics

Our research and teaching are both experimental and theoretical, covering a wide range of disciplines. Our activities contribute to development of new medical technology and to finding solutions for the next generation’s communication technology, energy utilization and development of materials. The Department of Physics is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Natural Sciences.

Deadline 25th February 2024
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Høgskoleringen 5, 7034 Trondheim

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