PhD in Physics of Sloshing Impacts on LNG Tanks

Department/faculty: Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering
Level: Master degree
Working hours: 38 hours per week
Contract: 4 years
Salary: €2191 to €2801 per month gross

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 research activities in the Process and Engineering Department are carried out on a world-class international level and range from fundamental to conceptual and applied research. Most relevant to the current opening is the department’s expertise in multiphase flow, turbulence, and computational fluid dynamics.

The new Multiphase Systems research group is dedicated to the study of multiphase flows. The research is carried out at a fundamental level, using modern experimental and numerical methods, and has a clear connection to processes in an applied or industrial context. Our group is housed in the Laboratory for Aero- and Hydrodynamics and has a state-of-the-art infrastructure for both experiments and numerical simulations.

Job description

The SLING project (funded by the STW Perspective programme) is offering a position for a PhD candidate. SLING develops the knowledge to enable new technologies for LNG tanks, with crucial cost-saving potential. The key to designing cost-effective LNG tanks is a shift to a first-principles approach to assess sloshing impacts. Due to the motion of the ship, surface waves are formed in the tanks that impact the tanks' walls, with the risk of damaging the structure. SLING brings together an unparalleled multidisciplinary team to tackle the complex sloshing physics through advanced experiments and numerical simulations. SLING is creating a new Dutch knowledge infrastructure with multiphase flow experts, state-of-the-art numerical tools, and a unique multiphase facility. The PhD candidate will study the interaction between strong pressure waves and bubbles. Initially, this will be done in water at atmospheric conditions, but later on the techniques need to be translated to a dedicated new facility that can be used to study liquids close to their boiling points. Optical techniques will be used to quantify the speed of sound (strongly affected by the presence of bubbles), the change in diameter of the bubbles and possibly the local temperature field in the case of phase transition.

Daily supervision will be provided by Dr. C. Poelma. The Multiphase Systems section is housed in the Laboratory for Aero- and Hydrodynamics, which provides a state-of-the-art infrastructure (both experimental and numerical). Close collaboration is encouraged with the Fluid Mechanics section, housed in the same laboratory.


Candidates must have an MSc in Mechanical or Aeronautical Engineering, Applied Physics or a related field. A successful candidate needs to have:
1) a thorough knowledge of fluid mechanics (including multiphase flows). He/she should have a strong background in experimental techniques (e.g. HWA, LDA or PIV).
2) a deep scientific curiosity and strong motivation to work in the field of multiphase flows.
3) strong analytical skills and the ability to work independently as well as in a team.
4) strong communication skills, an affinity for writing in scientific journals and giving presentations at scientific conferences, and a good command of English.

Conditions of employment

The 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.
As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

Information and application

For more information about this position, please contact Dr. C. Poelma, phone: +31 (0)15-2782620, e-mail: For general information about the application procedure, please contact drs. H.M. Bleeker,
To apply, please e-mail a detailed CV along with a letter of application by 1 April 2017 to Caroline Legierse,
When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number 3ME17-10.

Enquiries from agencies are not appreciated.


Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering
Master degree
Working hours
4 years
€2191 to €2801 per month gross

Closing date
May 1, 2017
Vacancy nr.


For more information about this job, please contact C. Poelma, Associate Professor.

T +31 (0)15-2788663

For more information about the application procedure, please contact Caroline Legierse/P&E.