PhD scholarship on AI based surrogate models for integrated optimization of wind power plants

onsdag 11 maj 22

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Frist 31. maj 2022
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Do you want to be involved in the green energy transition? Do you wish to contribute to the development of wind energy and are you looking for a career in R&D or academia? Then we have an opportunity!

We are looking for a highly motivated and skilled candidate to join us as PhD scholar.

DTU Wind and Energy Systems is a world-leading wind energy department that puts knowledge to work through cutting-edge research, innovation and development of technology. We have internationally leading research environments, and we prioritize strong cross-disciplinary collaborations within DTU, with leading international universities and facilities, and with private companies. We have a strong focus on the development of wind energy as the backbone of the future energy system and collaborate with the full sector.

You will be part of the international team carrying out research in the PWR section where the working language is English.

Designing offshore wind power plants is a very complex task, involving multiple disciplines and optimization blocks. For example, deciding optimum locations of wind turbines (WTs) in a project area (WTs layout optimization), demands a great deal of aerodynamic analysis, i.e., wind farm flow models; while the collection system cable layout optimization (how to interconnect WTs with the onshore system), requires combined knowledge of network optimization and power engineering. The strongest trade-off results between the placement of WTs and the total length of submarine cables: the more spread the WTs, the less flow interaction between them (known as wake effect), which would increase the annual energy production (AEP), at the expense of longer cables. Given the theoretical strong dependency, a coordinated design should lead to the best system outcome.

The PhD project focuses on developing models and solution methods for the optimization of electrical systems for large-scale offshore wind power plants using artificial intelligence (AI) based surrogate models and on the application of these methods within the simultaneous WTs layout and electrical systems optimization problem. Techniques stemming from Deep Learning will be studied, to separate factors of variation, establishing relationships that are expressed in terms of simple aspects. For example, the estimation cost of electrical systems in function of the degree of separation between WTs, among others.

Responsibilities and qualifications
The PhD project is part of the “Integrated Optimization of Offshore Wind Power Plants” research project funded by Independent Research Fund Denmark (DFF), further strengthening DTU Wind and Energy Systems’ world leading competences within design and optimization of wind power plants. The PhD student is expected to collaborate closely with the other members – internal and external – of the project.

Your primary tasks will be:

  • Plan and manage your PhD project in collaboration with supervisors
  • Leverage AI techniques to develop computationally fast and accurate models for the optimization of the electrical systems for large-scale offshore wind power plants
  • Contribute to the development of methods for the integrated optimization of Wind Turbines and electrical systems
  • Benchmark the developed models and methods using traditional and novel large-scale offshore wind power plants
  • Contribute to education as teaching assistant and co-supervision of BSc and MSc student projects.

A detailed project plan will be developed with the supervisors within the first three months after enrolment.

Candidates should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points)  in engineering, natural sciences or similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a Master’s degree. The successful candidate either has an education in computer science or applied mathematics and is willing to learn about electrical systems or has an education in electrical engineering with a deep inclination towards data science and optimization.  Candidates are required to have:

  • MSc degree in Computer Science, Applied Mathematics or Electrical Engineering
  • Documented background in optimization techniques and/or surrogate modelling
  • Experience with wind power plant analysis or design and optimization
  • Strong programming skills in different languages as C, Python, Matlab (or similar), and familiarity with optimization solvers as CPLEX, GUROBI, MOSEK (among others)
  • Ability to work in a project team and take responsibility for own research goals
  • Fluency in communicating and reporting in English

The successful candidate must also fulfill the requirements for admission to a PhD program at DTU.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see DTU's rules for the PhD education.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

The workplace will be DTU Wind and Energy Systems, Risø Campus at Roskilde, Denmark.

Further information
Further information about the academic content may be obtained from Professor Nicolaos A. Cutululis, ( or Professor Mathias Stolpe (

You can read more about DTU Wind and Energy Systems AT

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark. Furthermore, you have the option of joining our monthly free seminar “PhD relocation to Denmark and startup “Zoom” seminar” for all questions regarding the practical matters of moving to Denmark and working as a PhD at DTU.

Please submit your online application no later than 31 May 2022 (Danish time).

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:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma (in English) including official description of grading scale
  • A 1-page research statement on the above research topic

You may apply prior to ob­tai­ning your master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

The Department of Wind and Energy Systems is one of the world’s largest centers of wind energy and energy systems research and knowledge, with a staff of more than 400 people from 37 countries working in research, innovation, research-based consulting and education. DTU Wind and Energy Systems has approximately 90 PhD students. The department’s cross-disciplinary research is organized through strategic research programmes that collaborate with Danish and international universities, research institutions and organizations, as well as the wind industry.

Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 13,400 students and 5,800 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.