Post doc: Machinery for unmanned ships

Department/faculty: Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering
Level: Doctorate
Working hours: 38-40 hours weekly
Contract: 2 years
Salary: 3173 - 4166 euros monthly (full-time basis)

Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering

The 3mE Faculty trains committed engineering students, PhD candidates and post-doctoral researchers in groundbreaking scientific research in the fields of mechanical, maritime and materials engineering. 3mE is the epitome of a dynamic, innovative faculty, with a European scope that contributes demonstrable economic and social benefits. 

The Department of Maritime and Transport Technology (MTT) studies how to develop, design, build and operate marine, dredging and transport systems and their equipment. New generation transport and marine systems require the further development of the knowledge of the dynamics and the physical processes involved in transport, dredging and marine systems, the logistics of the systems and the interaction between the equipment and control systems. For more information on the research activities of M&TT department, please see: maritime-and-transport-technology .

Job description

The machinery onboard all existing ships was designed under the assumption that it would largely  be maintained and, if necessary, repaired by the ship's crew. With the advent of autonomous/unmanned ships this assumption becomes invalid and the design/selection of the ship's machinery needs to be reconsidered. 

Your job will be to research how the removal of a ship's crew should affect the choice for the ship's machinery and the maintenance concepts of this machinery. The research will include the identification of new maintenance processes needed and estimations on cost changes, with regards to different levels of autonomy. The solutions shall be reliable, safe, cost-effective and guarantee a high uptime of the ship (zero maintenance while at sea). The relevant research will be performed within a Dutch Joint Industry Project and a European Horizon 2020 project.


The applicant shall have a PhD degree in naval architecture, mechanical/marine engineering or a similar engineering discipline. excellent written and verbal communication skills in English is required, while the ability to communicate in Dutch is considered valuable.      

Conditions of employment

TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

Information and application

For information about this vacancy, you can contact Robert Hekkenberg, Associate Professor Ship Design, email:, phone: +31 15 2783117.  For information about the selectionprocedure, please contact Mrs Nathalie van Benthem, HR advisor, email

To apply, please submit an application letter, CV, publication list, and contact information of at least 2 references by 1 December 2018 to and refer to the vacancy number 3mE18-72 in the subject.



Enquiries from agencies are not appreciated.


Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering
Working hours
38-40 hours weekly
2 years
3173 - 4166 euros monthly (full-time basis)

Closing date
Dec. 2, 2018
Vacancy nr.


For more information about this job, please contact Robert Hekkenberg.

T +31 15 2783117

For more information about the application procedure, please contact: