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PhD: Salt Intrusion in Pearl River Estuary

Using mathematical techniques to analyse nonlinear dynamical systems

12 maanden geleden


Mekelweg, Delft, Zuid-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 uur
€ 2840 per maand


The mathematical physics group is seeking a PhD student on the project 'Salt intrusion: Understanding the Pearl River Estuary by Modelling and field Experiments', a joint research project between China (Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou), England (National Oceanography Centre, Liverpool) and the Netherlands (Delft University of Technology). A detailed description of the research project can be found at ta.twi.tudelft.nl/dv/staff/schuttel/sustainable_delta.pdf.

The overall aim of the project is to understand the three-dimensional salt transport mechanisms, and their sensitivity to variations in external forcing and geometry/bathymetry, with a specific focus on the Pearl River Estuary (China). Within the project, an integrated approach will be used, including field observations, numerical modelling and idealised modelling. The PhD candidate employed by Delft University of Technology, and co-supervised by the University of Twente, will focus on the latter aspect: using mathematical techniques (asymptotic analysis techniques, bifurcation techniques to analyse nonlinear dynamical systems, etc.), an idealised model will be developed and analysed to gain insight into the most important physical mechanisms. Our Chinese and English partner will simultaneously conduct field measurements and numerical modelling experiments. To ensure an optimal interaction among the candidates in the three different countries, three workshops and extended visits are scheduled.


Candidates should hold an MSc degree in applied mathematics, physical oceanography, civil engineering, or a related natural science. Experience with numerical modelling and knowledge of dynamical systems theory and (geophysical) fluid dynamics are an advantage.
In view of the international and multidisciplinary context of the project, a proactive attitude regarding project organisation and communication is a strong benefit.     


The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.
As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit graduateschool.tudelft.nl/ for more information.

For more information about this position, please contact H. M. Schuttelaars, phone: +31 (0)15-2783825, e-mail: h.m.schuttelaars@tudelft.nl. To apply, please e-mail a detailed CV, including a list of MSc results and preferably a copy of your MSc thesis, along with a letter of application by 1 february 2018 to P.T.M. van den Bergh, Hr-eemcs@tudelft.nl.
When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number EWI2017-42.

Additional information

H. M. Schuttelaars
+31 (0)15-2783825

Technische Universiteit Delft


Delft University of Technology (the TU Delft) is a multifaceted institution offering education and carrying out research in the technical sciences at an internationally recognised level. Education, research and design are strongly oriented towards applicability. The TU Delft develops technologies for future generations, focusing on sustainability, safety and economic vitality. At the TU Delft you will work in an environment where technical sciences and society converge. The TU Delft comprises eight faculties, unique laboratories, research institutes and schools. Electrical Engineering, Mathematics & Computer Science Research at the Delft Institute of Applied Mathematics (DIAM) centres around the analysis of mathematical models arising in science and engineering. This research is both fundamental and applied in nature, and is often inspired by technical applications. The department plays an active role in translating research results into concrete, practical applications. It maintains intensive contacts with other TU Delft departments, the major technological institutes and the research laboratories of major companies. Within its own subject field, the department provides teaching for the Applied Mathematics BSc and MSc programmes, and also contributes to the teaching of mathematics courses within other academic programmes at the TU Delft, and within national programmes such as “MasterMath”.