PhD position NewGen

PhD position NewGen

Published Deadline Location
16 Jun 16 Jul Enschede

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Job description

A PhD position is available at the University of Twente (the Netherlands) within the Faculty of Science and Technology. The research project will develop and demonstrate novel chemical additives for mitigating space charge accumulation in next generation PP-based thermoplastic and conventional DC-XLPE insulation materials for high voltage HVDC cables.

There is a significant need for developing new dielectric materials and solutions to overcome the issue of space charge accumulation in the main insulation layer of polymeric HVDC cables. Under HVDC stresses, both the XLPE insulation, and also the more recently emerging PP-based thermoplastic insulation materials, are prone to harmful space charge accumulation which can lead to local electric field stress enhancement, electrical treeing and premature dielectric breakdown, hence degrading the HVDC cable system reliability and lifetime.

Currently, we are looking for a PhD candidate for the project:

"New generation of HVDC insulation materials, cables and systems" (NewGen).

The candidate will develop and demonstrate novel molecularly defined space charge mitigating additives for PP- and XLPE-based HVDC cable insulation matrices where polar species capable of acting as charge trapping sites are directly anchored to suitable polyolefin (PO) backbones via chemical modification. This approach ensures compatibility with the polymeric host, hence providing a pathway for controlled and homogeneous dispersion of the space charge mitigating functionality in the insulation matrix.


University of Twente (UT)


For this position we are searching for an ambitious candidate with a Master's Degree in Organic Chemistry. To address the scientific questions you will use a combination of experimental techniques including organic synthesis, controlled polymerization techniques and state-of-the-art characterization techniques for polymers. For this project, therefore, organic or polymer synthesis skills are essential. In addition, the candidate should be fluent in English. If you are keen on working in an interdisciplinary environment as an organic and polymer chemist and are looking for a challenging project, please contact us.

Conditions of employment

  • Fulltime position for four years
  • The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in a stimulating scientific environment.
  • The PhD salary is € 2.541,- in the first year and increases to € 3.247,- in the fourth year.
  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%.
  • The number of holiday hours for full-time employment is 232 hours per calendar year.
  • A personal development program within the Twente Graduate School.


This highly interdisciplinary project is located between chemical sciences and engineering, involving the Sustainable Polymer Chemistry (SPC) group and the Elastomer Technology and Engineering (ETE) group of the University of Twente. The SPC group is part of the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology, which offers advanced characterization and fabrication tools on the nanoscale and covers various aspects of nanoscience and technology. The ETE group is part of the department of Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & Systems (MS3). The key topic of the chair of Elastomer Technology and Engineering is material development. Within this area, the main areas are filler technology, natural rubber, fibre reinforcing and recycling. Common ground of all projects within ETE is sustainability. ETE has been a partner in a preceding project on PP modification, using modified silica as filler (Gridable).


  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • 38—40 hours per week
  • €2541—€3247 per month
  • University graduate
  • 646


University of Twente (UT)

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Drienerlolaan 5, 7522NB, Enschede

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