PhD scholarship in Optimization, Control, and Stability of Combined AC and DC Grids under Uncertainty

DTU Elektro
fredag 17 mar 17

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Frist 31. marts 2017
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The Center for Electric Power and Energy at the Department of Electrical Engineering invites applications for a PhD position in Optimization, Control, and Stability of Combined AC and DC Grids under Uncertainty.

Increased integration of renewable energy sources leads to exploitation of remote sites with abundant renewable potential, as in off-shore wind farms. High voltage direct current lines are seen as the major technology option to connect off-shore wind farms to major load centers, forming HVDC grids. The off-shore grid currently in the planning phase in the North Sea belongs to one of these examples.

Advanced optimization and control algorithms under uncertainty are necessary to incorporate the advanced capabilities of a combined AC and DC grid for a large integration of renewable energy sources. The optimal operation of such a grid and the impact on the stability of both AC and DC grids, given the stochasticity of wind infeed, need to be studied in detail.

Responsibilities and tasks
The PhD student will carry out research in the field of optimization, stability assessment, and control of combined AC and HVDC grids. The work will focus on advanced computational techniques based on semidefinite programming for optimization and stability assessment. Convex relaxations will be applied to recover near-global optimal solutions. The fundamental properties of the methods and the underlying systems will be studied in detail.

Furthermore, advanced computational techniques for the stability of AC and HVDC grids will be developed, considering future low-inertia systems.

Candidates should have an MSc in engineering or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the MSc in Engineering.

The applicants should fulfill the following requirements: 

  • Knowledge of power system operation, stability, and integration of renewable electricity production
  • Advanced knowledge of optimization and control, with application to power systems
  • Demonstrated ability to use mathematical programming techniques based on semidefinite programming
  • Knowledge of optimization tools (e.g. GAMS, MOSEK, etc.) as well as programming tools (e.g., Matlab, C++, Julia)


  • Advanced skills in mathematical programming and advanced optimization techniques, e.g. linear and quadratic programming, mixed integer programming, and second order cone programming
  • Good Knowledge of decision making under uncertainty and robust optimization
  • Knowledge of modeling High Voltage DC lines for optimization and control
  • Knowledge of simulation of power systems with large shares of distributed energy resources
  • Excellent use of the English language
  • Ability to present results in technical reports, and prepare scientific papers for publication in international journals

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarships for the PhD degree are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

The assessment of the applicants will be made by Professor Pierre Pinson and Assistant Professor Spyros Chatzivasileiadis.

We offer
We offer an interesting and challenging job in an international environment focusing on education, research, scientific advice and innovation, which contribute to enhancing the economy and improving social welfare. We strive for academic excellence, collegial respect and freedom tempered by responsibility. The Technical University of Denmark (DTU) is a leading technical university in northern Europe and benchmarks with the best universities in the world.

Salary and appointment terms
The salary and appointment terms are consistent with the current rules for PhD students. The period of employment is 3 years.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Professor Pierre Pinson, tel.: +45 4525 3541 or Assistant Professor Spyros Chatzivasileiadis, tel.: +45 4525 5621.

You can read more about the Center for Electric Power and Energy

Please submit your online application no later than 31 March 2017. 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
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to ob­tai­ning their master's degree, but cannot begin before having received it.

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

Department of Electrical Engineering is the central department within electrical and biomedical engineering. Including PhD students we have more than 275 staff members. It is our goal to ensure research and engineering training at the highest international level. The department is organized into 8 sections each covering important areas of electrical and biomedical engineering. You can read more about DTU Electrical Engineering on At the Center for Electric Power and Energy we conduct cutting edge research which is crucial for society – not only in Denmark but worldwide.  

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 10,600 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.