Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

One or more PhD Stipends in Photovoltaic Energy Supply for future Energy Neutral Base Stations (14-18086)

This job offer has expired

    Aalborg University, the Faculty of Engineering and Science
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    31/01/2019 12:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Denmark › Aalborg
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

At the Faculty of Engineering and Science, Department of Energy Technology one or more PhD stipends in Photovoltaic Energy Supply for future Energy Neutral Base Stations are available within the general study program Energy Technology. The stipends are open for appointment from 1 July 2019 or soonest thereafter. The Department of Energy Technology is an expanding department covering most fields of Energy Technology ranging from electrical energy (Power Systems, Power Electronics, Electrical Machines to thermal energy including Energy Systems and Fluid Mechanics and Combustion but also mechatronic systems. The department has about 280 employees – out of them are more than 100 PhD students. The Laboratory facilities are world-class and the research carried out are most often in collaboration with industry. The position is offered in relation to the research program Photovoltaic Systems (www.pv-systems.et.aau.dk) and the PhD Student will be positioned to the section for Power Electronic Systems. The position will be within the H2020-MSCA-ITN project entitled energy-autonomous Portable Access points for INfrastructure-LESS networks (PAINLESS).

Job description

About PAINLESS The explosive growth of applications and industrial sectors that rely on broadband connectivity, is set to stretch the demand for wireless networks beyond the reach of the power grid infrastructure. Access points are being deployed on board of drones, while more than 84,000 hybrid-energy base stations are expected to be deployed annually in remote areas by 2020. Portable network nodes that are energy-autonomous and operate detached from the power grid will become indispensable in the coming applications of wireless networks. Energy-autonomy presents immense challenges for the wireless network design and imposes a complete re-think of technological solutions. PAINLESS has the visionary aim to establish a training and research platform to pioneer green, energy-autonomous portable network nodes which are self-subsistent and limitlessly-scalable, to satisfy future demands with minimal infrastructure. It promises a paradigm shift by integrating and jointly optimising wireless networks with renewable energy sources, radiated energy harvesting and airborne access points, as well as establishing disruptive performance benchmarks for the combined wireless power-and-information distribution. Our results will kick-start an innovation ecosystem for infrastructure and service providers of ICT to develop and commercialise a new generation of autonomous, sustainable and power-independent communication networks with selforganising functionality, to enable 100% coverage in urban environments in a power-efficient manner; provide network access to all types of emergency, disaster and special events areas; and connect remote / developing areas with problematic infrastructure. PAINLESS relates to H2020-MSCA with a vision to produce the first generation of experts in a radically new wave of energy autonomous networks that will revolutionise the wireless networking technology landscape and the plethora of associated vertical business sectors.


For further information about the Project, please visit www.painless-itn.com.


The PhD student will be enrolled on the PhD programme at Aalborg University, Department of Energy Technology and will write his/her thesis on a topic related to Photovoltaic Energy Supply for future Energy Neutral Base Stations, supervised by a member of the academic staff at Aalborg University, and co-supervised by members of the academic and industrial teams during the secondments. Further information about the PhD project is below: Objectives: This PhD project focuses on accurate modelling of the photovoltaic -based energy supply for the Base Stations (BS). Throughout the project two main cases will be thoroughly investigated. Case 1: ground-based BSs, where PV panels must ensure long-term energy-autonomous operation. Case 2: drone-based BSs, where solar cells must contribute to extended flight time and range. Furthermore, to assess the net energy provided by the solar cells, the power electronic converters that ensure the conversion of the variable PV cell voltages to the required level as well as Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) to ensure optimum energy extraction from the PV cells will be thoroughly investigated and modelled. Both theoretical analysis and simulations as well as lab experiments should be included.

The ESR’s PhD must be designed and conceived as an integral part of the overall PAINLESS project. The successful candidate will be a team player, prepared to work closely with the Project’s senior staff and other ESRs. By the end of the third year the ESR will be expected to complete a publishable chapter for the volume constituting one of the major deliverables of PAINLESS. This chapter can be a part of the PhD dissertation. This is an outstanding opportunity to be part of a network of leading scholars working on state of the art technologies in Wireless Communications. In addition to PhD supervision, the successful candidate will benefit from a wide-ranging training programme, which will encompass:

a) Regular summer/winter schools pertaining to both, technical skills on topics in wireless communications relevant to the scope of the PAINLESS project, and a range of transferrable skills (research management, entrepreneurship, patents, etc.);

b) An overseas research secondment to one of the partner universities in the PAINLESS consortium;

c) A secondment to a non-academic training partner; d) A number of career fares towards the end of their project, to assist in their future employment.

The ESR will help organise and present their research at a major international conference on the themes of the PAINLESS research programme.

Duties & Responsibilities

1. Undertake postgraduate research in support of the agreed doctoral research project.

2. Work closely with the academic supervisors to ensure the compatibility of the individual project with the overall goals of PAINLESS.

3. Present and publish research to both academic and

non-academic audiences.

4. Attend and participate in academic and non-academic conferences, events and seminars.

5. Attend and participate in all training events and supervisory meetings.

6. Be seconded to other network partners as necessary to fulfil the grant obligations.

7. Prepare progress reports and similar documents on research for funding bodies, as required.

8. Contribute to the delivery and management of the wider Programme, including attending and participating in programme committee meetings.

As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the ESR may be required to undertake other duties, which are broadly in line with the above duties and responsibilities.

Person Specification

1. A good Undergraduate degree and a postgraduate Master’s degree (or equivalent) in electronic or electrical engineering, or a physical sciences subject.

2. Excellent written and verbal communication, including presentation skills.

3. Highly proficient English language skills.

4. Excellent organisational skills, attention to detail and the ability to meet deadlines.

5. Ability to think logically, create solutions and make informed decisions.

6. Willingness to work collaboratively in a research environment.

7. A strong commitment to your own continuous professional development.

8. Ability to travel and work across Europe.

Eligibility Requirements

All candidates must meet the following requirements to be considered for this post:

a) Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs) shall at the time of recruitment by the host organisation be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree. 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.

b) At the time of recruitment by the host organisation, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host organisation for more than 12 months in the three years immediately prior to the recruitment date. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.

How to apply

Application must be submitted online at https://www.vacancies.aau.dk/

The application must include:

a) A cover letter explaining your motivation for applying.

b) A Curriculum Vitae setting out your educational qualifications as well as any additional scientific achievements and publications.

c) Evidence of Advanced-level English – IELTS (or equivalent) overall grade of 7.5 with a minimum of 6.5 in each of the subtests.

d) A copy of your Master’s certificate (or equivalent) or certificate of graduation.

e) An official transcript of the completed subjects and grades achieved in the course of the Master’s programme.

f) Two letters of recommendation from researchers familiar with your academic activities, e.g. the advisor of your Master’s thesis. The referees must e-mail their recommendations directly to (EST-EF-HR@adm.aau.dk).

g) A short research proposal on the project’s theme (max. 2,000 words)

Selection process

The selection and recruitment processes of the ESRs will be in accordance with the European Charter and Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. The recruitment process will be open, transparent, impartial, equitable, and merit-based. There will be no overt/covert discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or belief, disability or age. To this end, the following selection criteria for the recruitment of the ESRs will be considered:

1) Curriculum vitae

2) Academic performance (diplomas, university transcripts, etc.)

3) Research and industrial experience

4) Awards and fellowships

5) Publications and patents

6) Research, leadership, and creativity potential

7) English knowledge

8) Other relevant items based on the specific candidate

The recruitment process will adhere to the guidelines described in the Grant Agreement of the PAINLESS project. At the network’s level, the recruitment panel will include a minimum of 3 members of the project in order to guarantee gender- and sector-balance.

Applications close on 31 January 2019 and interviews are anticipated to be held February-March 2019.

The applications will be analysed after the application deadline, and the shortlisted candidates will be invited to a Skype interview.

By applying for this position, you give consent to circulate your application within the consortium members.


You may obtain further information from Associate Professor Dezso Sera, Department of Energy Technology, phone: +4530622675, email: des@et.aau.dk concerning the scientific aspects of the stipend.

PhD stipends are allocated to individuals who hold a Master's degree. PhD stipends are normally for a period of 3 years. It is a prerequisite for allocation of the stipend that the candidate will be enrolled as a PhD student at the Doctoral School of Engineering and Science in accordance with the regulations of Ministerial Order No. 1039 of August 27, 2013 on the PhD Programme at the Universities and Certain Higher Artistic Educational Institutions. According to the Ministerial Order, the progress of the PhD student shall be assessed every six months. It is a prerequisite for continuation of salary payment that the previous progress is approved at the time of the evaluation.

The qualifications of the applicant will be assessed by an assessment committee. On the basis of the recommendation of the assessment committee, the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Science will make a decision for allocating the stipend.

For further information about stipends and salary as well as practical issues concerning the application procedure contact Ms Lise Suhr Mogensen, The Faculty of Engineering and Science, email: lsm@adm.aau.dk, phone: +45 9940 3687.

For more information of The Doctoral School of Engineering and Science: www.phd.engineering.aau.dk

The application is only to be submitted online by using the "Apply online" button below.

AAU wishes to reflect the diversity of society and welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background or belief.


Appointment and salary as a PhD fellow are according to the Ministry of Finance Circular of November 10, 2015 on the Collective Agreement for Academics in Denmark, Appendix 5, regarding PhD fellows, and with the Ministry of Finance current circular on the employment structure at Danish Universities.

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Aalborg University

EURAXESS offer ID: 368529