Postdoc on mechanical challenges in energy conversion technologies

DTU Energy
Thursday 13 Jul 17

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The Department of Energy Conversion and Storage at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) seeks a postdoc to strengthen our research area on mechanical challenges in emerging energy technologies like solid oxide fuel and electrolysis cells (SOC) and high temperature, high pressure alkaline electrolysis cells (HTP-AEC). The reliability and durability of these technologies depend critically on the mechanical properties of the constituent ceramic materials and their interplay. 

Responsibilities and tasks
The increasing share of electricity production from fluctuating sources like wind and solar, entails the need to store energy in GWh-TWh scale. At this scale schemes involving “power to gas” are a promising option as gas can be stored in vast amounts at low cost. At DTU Energy it is our mission to address technological barriers to energy technologies central to the transition to a sustainable energy system and in collaboration with industry to seek to bring such technologies to use.

At DTU Energy we thus work with various technologies complementing each other to serve different purposes in a sustainable energy system. General for many of them (SOFC, SOEC, HTP-AEC) is that they rely on brittle ceramics, glass ceramics joined with metals and in some cases also involve high pressure operation. These conditions pose severe challenges relating to the mechanical behavior of the components, i.e. excessive deformations due to creep and risk of brittle fractures.

At DTU Energy we address these challenges in project teams involving members with different background, e.g. chemistry, material science solid mechanics etc. Key to the development is the investigation of the mechanical properties of materials and components and assessing the technical risks during use by modelling the non-linear mechanical response and failure processes.

We seek as postdoc to contribute to this work. Given employment you will be involved in a broad range of mechanical investigations, which will include mechanical testing (bulk, interfaces) at relevant conditions (at high temperature /controlled atmosphere) an also analyses of mechanical failures through modelling with the aim to mitigate risks by modifying designs, material compositions and/or operational conditions.

Thus, you should be strong in several of the following disciplines:

  • solid mechanics
  • finite element modeling and/or multi-scale modelling
  • fracture mechanics
  • experimental characterization of mechanical properties
  • material science
  • properties of ceramic
  • Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics, or similar.
  • Good communication skills in both written and spoken English.
  • Ability to work independently, to plan and carry out complicated tasks, to be part of a dynamical multi-disciplinary group, and to network both with project partners and international collaborators.
The working environment
DTU Energy is focusing on functional materials and their application in sustainable energy technology. Our research areas include fuel cells, electrolysis, polymer solar cells, magnetic refrigeration, superconductivity, thermo-electrics, sustainable synthetic fuels, and batteries. Additional information about the department can be found on

We offer
We offer an interesting and challenging job in an international environment focusing on education, research, scientific advice and innovation, which contribute to enhancing the economy and improving social welfare. We strive for academic excellence, collegial respect and freedom tempered by responsibility. The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is a leading technical university in northern Europe and benchmarks with the best universities in the world.

Salary and terms of employment
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The salary will be agreed with the relevant union.

The employment is for a time limited period. The place of work is DTU Risø Campus in Roskilde, and late 2019 the department will move to the main campus of DTU north of Copenhagen.

Further Information
Please contact Professor Peter Vang Hendriksen, , +45 4677 5725 or Senior Researcher Henrik Lund Frandsen,, +45 4677 5668.

Application procedure
Please submit your online application no later than Monday 14 August 2017. Apply online via

Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • Application (cover letter)
  • CV
  • Diploma (MSc/PhD)
  • List of publications
Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered. All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 10,600 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.