PhD scholarship in bio-electrochemical system

A PhD scholarship is available in Bioenergy group at Department of Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Denmark within the project “Innovative bio-electrochemical- anaerobic-digestion coupled system for ammonia recovery and energy production from ammonia-rich residues” funded by the Danish Council for Independent Research, Technology and Production Sciences.
Responsibilities and tasks
The candidate will participate in a newly granted project, which aims to develop an innovative process integrating bio-electrochemical system with anaerobic digestion to recover ammonia and thereby enhance bio-methanation of ammonia-rich residues. In this process, ammonia recovery and energy production will be realized in a bio-electrochemical system. Moreover, removal of ammonia from anaerobic reactor will alleviate or counteract ammonia inhibition and enhance the conversion of ammonia-rich wastes to biogas, giving synergistic advantages for both ammonia recycling and increase of biogas production.The candidate will perform a thorough study to optimize system performance, address potential limitations, and to find corresponding technical solutions.

Candidates must have obtained a master's (MSc) degree in engineering/science or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to the master's degree in engineering/science. A high motivation for research and solid written and oral communication skills in English are prerequisites of any successful application.
The successful candidate should have a strong background in bio-electrochemistry, systems biology, biotechnology and bioengineering, microbiology/metabolic engineering, chemical or biochemical engineering. Strong skills in electrochemistry analysis and experience with laboratory work are required. Moreover, previous high level publications in relevant area will be an advantage.

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 programs of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

In order to obtain academic approval, a student must have an MSc grade point average of at least 8 (7 grade scale) in addition to having received a high grade on the master's thesis (10/12). Instructions on how to convert your grades in the 7 grade scale are found at DTU’s homepage.

PhD at DTU Environment
As PhD student at DTU Environment you will be part of the scientific staff and treated as such. We are one of the leading university institutes in Europe with a large network worldwide. We have an international environment with an international MSc education and 60 PhD students from different countries. Copenhagen is a pleasant place to live with easy transport and a rich cultural life.

Scientific environment in Bioenergy group
The PhD project will be conducted in the Bioenergy research group headed by Professor Irini Angelidaki. The group focuses on the area of bio-electrochemical systems and biomass (e.g. algae) based biofuels production (biogas, bio-hydrogen and bioethanol), optimization of the anaerobic processes and development of sustainable solutions for organic waste and wastewater treatment. The group has over 200 scientific publications. The group has during the last years gained a high momentum and attracted significant external funding from national and international sources.

The assessment of the applicants will be made by Professor Irini Angelidaki.

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

The desired start date is as soon as the position is filled with qualified candidate, no later than February 1, 2014.

This is a full scholarship covering salary and tuition fee.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Dr. Yifeng Zhang,

Please do not send applications to this e-mail address, instead apply online as described below.

You can read more about DTU Environment at

We must have you online application by 31 March 2014.

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).
  • Two reference letters
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.

DTU Environment is one of the largest university departments specializing in environmental engineering in Europe. Research is conducted by an international staff consisting of 25 faculty members, approximately 15 postdocs, 5 visiting foreign scientists and 55 PhD students. Research is done in four themes. The project is located in Bioenergy Group, Theme Residual Resource Engineering.
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