PhD Position on Electromagnetic Characterisation of Steel Surfaces for Through Process Emissivity Control

PhD Position on Electromagnetic Characterisation of Steel Surfaces for Through Process Emissivity Control

Published Deadline Location
10 Aug 24 Sep Delft

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Join the multi-faculty team of researchers at TU Delft and M2i investigating the chemical and physical properties of steel surfaces for the Through Process Emissivity Control (TREC) project.

Job description

In the automotive and transport industries, there is a continuous drive to construct light-weight vehicles to reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions to meet European sustainability targets. The steel community has responded by the development of advanced high strength steels (AHSS) and their introduction into today's cars has made them considerably safer and lighter. AHSS owe their higher strength to their largely refined and complex microstructures, containing multiple metallurgical phases. The microstructure of AHSS is strongly influenced by the exact temperature-time path with which it is processed, which in turn depends critically on the emissivity of the steel surface. Emissivity variations may occur during manufacturing due to variations in surface chemistry, surface topography, and oxidation layer composition and thickness. Additionally, the temperature itself influences the emissivity. As the temperature, surface chemistry (due to diffusion) and oxidation layer (depending on the local furnace atmosphere) vary during strip heating, it is highly complex to master the evolution of the emissivity.

The proposed research and development on emissivity modelling will help Tata Steel to predict the emissivity and emissivity variations of the incoming product and possibly anticipate on them by adjustment of the process settings, with the aim to minimize the microstructural variations. A second important objective of the project is to develop a measurement technique to assess the emissivity of the steel surface. This measurement will provide capabilities for model validation as well as feedback to enhance the emissivity control and feedforward information to improve the strip temperature control. In the perspective of Industry 4.0, an inline emissivity measurement allows to tune the digital twin describing the evolution of the surface condition over the production route. At TU Delft, the project team involves two PhD researchers and a multidisciplinary supervisory team from the Departments of Aerospace Structures and Materials and Materials Science and Engineering.


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


You have a strong background in applied physics, optical sensing and electromagnetic theory.

In particular, you should have:

  • An MSc in Applied Physics, Chemical Engineering, Materials Science or related subjects;
  • An eye for details and interest in applying physics knowledge to manufacturing processes;
  • Excellent writing skills;
  • Laboratory experience in experimental optics and/or electromagnetics
  • Affinity with analytical and numerical modelling
  • Complementary knowledge on materials science;
  • A curiosity-driven mindset and a strong motivation for conducting independent research;
  • Inclination for team-work and effective communication in an international environment;
  • Desire to publish scientific articles and participate in project meetings and international conferences;

Doing a PhD at TU Delft requires English proficiency at a certain level to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements.

Conditions of employment

Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2770 per month in the first year to € 3539 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.

For international applicants, TU Delft has the Coming to Delft Service. This service provides information for new international employees to help you prepare the relocation and to settle in the Netherlands. The Coming to Delft Service offers a Dual Career Programme for partners and they organise events to expand your (social) network.


Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.

At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.


Challenge. Change. Impact!


Faculty Aerospace Engineering

The Faculty of Aerospace Engineering at Delft University of Technology is one of the world’s most highly ranked (and most comprehensive) research, education and innovation communities devoted entirely to aerospace engineering. More than 200 science staff, around 270 PhD candidates and close to 3000 BSc and MSc students apply aerospace engineering disciplines to address the global societal challenges that threaten us today, climate change without doubt being the most important. Our focal subjects: sustainable aerospace, big data and artificial intelligence, bio-inspired engineering and smart instruments and systems. Working at the faculty means working together. With partners in other faculties, knowledge institutes, governments and industry, both aerospace and non-aerospace. Working in field labs and innovation hubs on our university campus and beyond.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering.


  • PhD
  • Engineering
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • TUD04281


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

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