PhD Fellow in the development of a combined heat & power system based on Fuel cell

Deadline: 04.08.2024

UiT The Arctic University of Norway

UiT The Arctic University of Norway is a multi-campus comprehensive university at the international forefront. Our vision is to be a driving force for developing the High North. The Northern Sami notion eallju, which means eagerness to work, sets the tone for this motive power at UiT. Along with students, staff and the wider community, we aim to utilise our location in Northern Norway and Sápmi, our broad and diverse research and study portfolio and interdisciplinary advantage to shape the future.

Our social mission is to provide research-based education of high quality, perform artistic development and carry out research of the highest international quality standards in the entire range from basic to applied. We will convey knowledge about disciplines and contribute to innovation. Our social mission unites UiT across various studies, research fields and large geographical distances. This demands good cooperation with trade and industry and civil society as well as with international partners. We will strengthen knowledge-based and sustainable development at a regional, national and international level.

Academic freedom and scientific and ethical principles form the basis for all UiT’s activities. Participation, co-determination, transparency and good processes will provide the decision-making basis we need to make wise and far-sighted priorities. Our students and staff will have the opportunity to develop their abilities and potential. Founded on academic integrity, we will be courageous, committed and generous in close contact with disciplines, people and contemporary developments.

We will demonstrate adaptability and seek good and purposeful utilisation of resources, so we are ready to meet the expectations and opportunities of the future. We will strengthen the quality and impact of our disciplines and core tasks through the following three strategic priority areas.

Faculty of Engineering Science and Technology

The position

A PhD position is available at the Department of Building, Energy and Material TechnologyFaculty of engineering science and technology from April 2024 for applicants who wish to obtain the degree of Philosophy Doctor (PhD). The position is affiliated with the Hydrogen, Fuel Cells and Clean Energy Storage Research Group, focused on the development of combined gas turbine-fuel cell system for different applications such as smart cities.

The position is for a period of four years. The nominal length of the PhD programme is three years. The fourth year is distributed as 25 % each year and will consist of teaching and other duties. The objective of the position is to complete research training to the level of a doctoral degree. Admission to the PhD programme is a prerequisite for employment, and the programme period starts on commencement of the position.

The workplace is at UiT in Narvik. You must be able to start in the position within a reasonable time after receiving the offer.

The project

Smart cities stand at the forefront of sustainable energy transformation and play a pivotal role in advancing clean power generation for stationary utilization and for transport. For a sustainable energy landscape, innovative solutions are required to achieve the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the strategic goals of UiT.

When it comes to power generation, the solid Oxide fuel cells (SOFC) that operate at intermediate temperatures represent a game changer especially when they are combined with a gas turbine. Hybrid Power Plants combining SOFC and Gas Turbines have been explored by many researchers and their contribution to a more sustainable land scape in smart cities have been validated due to their capacity to maximize Efficient Energy Utilization and to reduce harmful emissions. However, there is still a need to develop more innovative solutions to further improve their efficiency, simplify their design and reduce their capital cost. This research may be based on Norwegian Patent No. 346132, Patentee: Universitetet i Tromsø - Norges Arktiske Universitet.

The initial theoretical analysis of the system reveals that the overall efficiency of this combination is better than the efficiency of either the fuel cell or the jet engine working individually, as all the outputs of the fuel cell are utilised, which yields a system of considerably high efficiency. The candidate is expected to propose novel system solutions that will lead to improved design and efficiency of the plant. We aim to achieve scientific advances that incorporates state of-the-art knowledge in several fields that converge to establish the technology at field scale. This research project focuses on the design and optimization of the system and potentially production and testing of a small-scale prototype. A parametric study of the influence of the principal design parameters of a novel full-scale plant on its performance will be undertaken.

The following aspects must be considered in the analysis: reduction in GHG, particularly carbon emission, increase in energy utilisation efficiency and reduction in thermal loading on the environment, while operating in standard atmosphere.


For further information about the position, please contact:

Professor Mohamad Mustafa: 

or Professor Rajnish Calay:


This position requires a master’s degree or equivalent in Mechanical Engineering, Process technology, applied physics with a good knowledge of turbomachinery, power generation or other relevant disciplines. Previous publications on a relevant topic are desirable. If you are near completion of your master’s degree, you may still apply.

Applicants must document fluency of in English and be able to work in an international environment. Nordic applicants can document their English capabilities by attaching their high school diploma. Working knowledge of Norwegian or a Scandinavian language is also beneficial.

In addition, knowledge and training in the following fields are essential:

  • Thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, materials science, turbomachines, design of experiments and engineering design
  • Programming (for instance C/C++, python, MATLAB, and other modelling software)
  • CFD, FEA Modelling and simulations

The applicant must present a short essay (max 1 page, excluding references) on the proposed work for the PhD. The essay should outline the applicant's area of interest and motivation for completing a PhD at UiT in Narvik.

In the assessment, the emphasis is on the applicant's potential to complete a research education based on the master's thesis or equivalent, and any other scientific work. The essay will also be considered. In addition, other experience of significance for the completion of the doctoral programme may be given consideration.

We will also emphasize motivation and personal suitability for the position. 

We are looking for candidates who:

  • Have experience such as project leadership, pedagogic and scientific writing
  • Has good interpersonal skills
  • Have good collaboration skills
  • Has good communication at all levels (writing and oral)
  • Wants to contribute to a good working environment

As many people as possible should have the opportunity to undertake organized research training. If you already hold a PhD or have equivalent competence, we will not appoint you to this position.

Admission to the PhD programme 

For employment in the PhD position, you must be qualified for admission to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Engineering Science and Technology and participate in organized doctoral studies within the employment period.

Admission normally requires:

  • A bachelor's degree of 180 ECTS and a master's degree of 120 ECTS, or an integrated master's degree of 300 ECTS. 
  • A master's thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 30 ECTS for a master's degree of 120 ECTS. 
  • A master's thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 20 ECTS for an integrated master's degree of 300 ECTS. 

UiT normally accepts higher education from countries that are part of the Lisbon Recognition Convention.

In order to gain admission to the programme, applicants with a background from a Norwegian institution should have a minimum grade of C on their master thesis and a weighted grade average of 3.0 for the last two years of their master programme. A more detailed description of admission requirements can be found here

Applicants with a foreign education will be subjected to an evaluation of whether the educational background is equal to Norwegian higher education, following national guidelines from NOKUT. Depending on which country the education is from, one or two additional years of university education may be required to fulfil admission requirements, e.g. a 4-year bachelor's degree and a 2-year master's degree. 

If you are employed in the position, you will be provisionally admitted to the PhD programme. Application for final admission must be submitted no later than two months after taking up the position. 

Inclusion and diversity

UiT The Arctic University of Norway is working actively to promote equality, gender balance and diversity among employees and students, and to create an inclusive and safe working environment. We believe that inclusion and diversity are a strength, and we want employees with different competencies, professional experience, life experience and perspectives.

If you have a disability, a gap in your CV or immigrant background, we encourage you to tick the box for this in your application. If there are qualified applicants, we invite at least one in each group for an interview. If you get the job, we will adapt the working conditions if you need it. Apart from selecting the right candidates, we will only use the information for anonymous statistics.

We offer

  • Involvement in an interesting research project 
  • Good career opportunities 
  • A good academic environment with dedicated colleagues
  • Flexible working hours and a state collective pay agreement
  • Pension scheme through the state pension fund 
  • PhD Fellows are normally given a salary of 532 200 NOK/year with a 3% yearly increase

Norwegian health policy aims to ensure that everyone, irrespective of their personal finances and where they live, has access to good health and care services of equal standard. As an employee you will become member of the National Insurance Scheme which also include health care services.

More practical information about working and living in Norway can be found here.


Your application must include: 

  • Cover letter explaining your motivation and research interests
  • CV
  • Diploma for bachelor's and master's degree
  • Transcript of grades/academic record for bachelor's and master's degree
  • Explanation of the grading system for foreign education (Diploma Supplement if available)
  • Documentation of English proficiency
  • Documentation of proficiency in Norwegian (or a Scandinavian language) if applicable 
  • 2-3 references with contact information
  • Master’s thesis, and any other academic works (published or unpublished) he/she wants to be considered in the assessment
  • Essay (max 1 page, , excluding references)

Qualification with a master’s degree is required before commencement in the position. If you are near completion of your master’s degree, you may still apply and submit a draft version of the thesis and a statement from your supervisor or institution indicating when the degree will be obtained. You must still submit your transcripts for the master’s degree with your application.

All documentation to be considered must be in a Scandinavian language or English. Diplomas and transcripts must also be submitted in the original language, if not in English or Scandinavian. If English proficiency is not documented in the application, it must be documented before starting in the position. We only accept applications and documentation sent via Jobbnorge within the application deadline. 

General information 

The appointment is made in accordance with State regulations and guidelines at UiT. At our website, you will find more information for applicants

Remuneration for the position of PhD Fellow is in accordance with the State salary scale code 1017. A compulsory contribution of 2 % to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund will be deducted. You will become a member of the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund, which gives you many benefits in addition to a lifelong pension: You may be entitled to financial support if you become ill or disabled, your family may be entitled to financial support when you die, you become insured against occupational injury or occupational disease, and you can get good terms on a mortgage. Read more about your employee benefits at: spk.no.

A shorter period of appointment may be decided when the PhD Fellow has already completed parts of their research training programme or when the appointment is based on a previous qualifying position PhD Fellow, research assistant, or the like in such a way that the total time used for research training amounts to three years. 

We process personal data given in an application or CV in accordance with the Personal Data Act (Offentleglova). According to the Personal Data Act information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure. You will receive advance notification in the event of such publication, if you have requested non-disclosure. 

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