iPhD “Thermally Enhanced Antenna Arrays for mm-Wave Applications”

Eindhoven University of Technology
March 01, 2024
Offerd Salary:€3,355
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Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
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iPhD “Thermally Enhanced Antenna Arrays for mm-Wave Applications”

Prestigious industrial PhD Student Position on “Thermally Enhanced Antenna Arrays for mm-Wave Applications” Department of Research and Development, The Antenna Company EM Group, Department of Electrical Engineering, Eindhoven University of Technology.



Irène Curie Fellowship



Electrical Engineering



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Reference number


Job description

Communication networks provide the bedrock for digital transition of our society and economy. In 4G and 5G mobile networks, the Netherlands is strong in RF semiconductor technologies and applications of mobile technology. 6G, the new generation for the 2030s, offers large economic opportunities for the Netherlands to extend this position to areas in the global 6G value chain that have earlier moved to Asian and US companies. Securing such a position is crucial for the Netherlands to stay in control of its mobile networks. In the Future Network Services (FNS) program, leading ICT- and semiconductor companies and research institutions will jointly research specific parts of 6G: software antennas, AI-driven network software and leading 6G applications. By integrating these parts at the 6G software layer, FNS creates a powerful approach to make 6G a truly intelligent network. This innovation gives an important impulse to the Dutch economy and sustainable earning power, through advanced industrial activity and significant export opportunities. It will make 6G networks more energy efficient and drive digital autonomy.

Outline of the FNS-6G program:

The FNS innovations are developed in four program lines: (1) intelligent components, developing software antennas for the new high (mm-wave and THz) frequencies in 6G; (2) intelligent networks, developing AI-driven software for 6G radio and core networks; (3) leading applications, developing new 6G applications in mobility, energy, health and other sectors that create value through new set- ups of the sector value chains; (4) ecosystem strengthening, integrating the FNS innovations in the national 6G testbed, stimulating start-ups and SMEs, developing and executing the human capital agenda and ensuring policy alignment. The consortium currently consists of a mix of 60 large and small telecom, semiconductor and ICT companies, universities and public bodies:

  • PL1: TU/e (lead), Aircision, Altum-RF, Ampleon, AntenneX, Astron, Bosch (ItoM), Chalmers, CITC, Ericsson, IMEC, KPN, NXP, PITC, Prodrive, RobinRadar, Sabic, Signify, TheAntennaCompany, TNO, TUDelft, Twente University (UT), Viasat, VodafoneZiggo, VTEC;
  • PL2: TUDelft (lead), Almende, AMS-IX, Ericsson, IS-Wireless, KPN, Nokia, NVIDIA, Solvinity, SURF, TNO, TU/e, Universiteit van Amsterdam, UT, Viasat, VodafoneZiggo, Vrije Universiteit (Amsterdam);
  • PL3: TNO (lead), Alliander, ASML, Comforest, Cordis, Drone Delivery Service, Ericsson, Future Mobility Network, gemeente Amsterdam and Rotterdam, Gomibo, KPN, Philips, Port Of Rotterdam, PWXR, Robin Radar, TenneT TSO, T-Mobile, Vialis;
  • PL4: TUDelft (lead), BTG, Ericsson, ECP, EZK, Hanze Hogeschool, KOREWireless, KPN, Liberty Global, Nokia, OostNL, RDI, SURF, TU/e, T-Mobile , UT, Vodafone, Ziggo.
  • PhD position on “Thermally Enhanced Antenna Arrays for mm-Wave Applications”:

    Research Objective:

    Develop advanced antenna arrays for mm-wave applications with enhanced thermal management capabilities. This involves the integration of heatsink structures with antenna elements to ensure efficient heat dissipation while maintaining optimal electromagnetic characteristics.


    Millimeter-wave technologies are crucial for 5G/6G communication systems and radar applications. However, these high-frequency systems generate significant heat, affecting performance and reliability. Effective thermal management becomes paramount for sustaining stable operation.

    Research Components:
  • Material Analysis: Investigate high thermal conductivity materials, such as alumina, for use in antenna designs. Study their electromagnetic and thermal properties to understand the balance between heat transfer and radiation efficiency.
  • Design of Thermally Enhanced Antennas: Develop antenna designs that incorporate thermal management features. These may include fin-shaped heatsink structures or integrated heatsink-antenna elements using 3-D printing and LTCC technologies.
  • Simulation and Modeling: Use computational tools to simulate both the thermal and electromagnetic behavior of the proposed antenna designs. Optimize the designs for minimal thermal resistance without compromising electromagnetic performance.
  • Fabrication and Testing: Fabricate prototypes using advanced manufacturing techniques and test them in real-world scenarios. Analyze their performance in terms of heat dissipation, gain, bandwidth, and radiation patterns.
  • Innovative Applications: Explore the potential applications of these thermally enhanced antenna arrays in emerging mm-wave technologies, such as joint communications and sensing.
  • Advantages:

  • Improved Reliability: Efficient heat management leads to stable operation under various conditions, enhancing the reliability of mm-wave systems.
  • Enhanced Performance: Optimal thermal and electromagnetic design ensures high performance in terms of signal strength and bandwidth.
  • Compactness and Integration: The use of innovative materials and designs allows for creation of compact and integrated antenna solutions, suitable for densely packed electronic systems.
  • Outcome:

    The research aims to contribute significantly to the field of mm-wave technology, offering solutions for thermal challenges in high-frequency antenna systems, and paving the way for more efficient and reliable communication and radar systems.


    This Ph.D. program will address a critical need in the rapidly advancing field of mm-wave technology, combining theoretical research with practical design and implementation. The development of thermally enhanced antenna arrays will play a pivotal role in the next generation of wireless communication and sensing technologies.

    Job requirements
  • Applicants should have, or expect to receive, a Master of Science degree or equivalent in a relevant electrical engineering or applied physics discipline.
  • The selection is based on the candidates' application documents in combination with their performance during the interviews and possible assignments.
  • Besides good subject knowledge, emphasis will be placed on creative thinking, motivation, ability to work in a team, initiative to work independently and personal suitability for research training.
  • An educational background in the areas of electromagnetic field theory, antenna design, antenna arrays, microwave engineering, and signal processing is preferred. Practical experience is considered beneficial.
  • Proficiency in using scientific and engineering software packages such as CST Studio Suite, Python, Matlab, Mathematica, etc. are advantageous.
  • Fluency in spoken and written English is essential.
  • Conditions of employment
  • An opportunity for a significant role in a rapidly evolving scale-up within the advanced antenna systems sector, offering exposure to both the scientific and industrial communities.
  • Four years of full-time employment, featuring biannual performance and progress review cycles.
  • Complimentary access to facilities of The Antenna Company to facilitate your PhD research, with annual discussions on personal development programs.
  • A competitive starting gross monthly salary of €3,355 (based on full-time employment), with meaningful annual increases reflecting performance and results, in line with the salary policies of The Antenna Company.
  • An additional annual holiday bonus amounting to 8% of your yearly gross salary.
  • A comprehensive package of fringe benefits, including access to state-of- the-art technical infrastructure, reimbursement of commuting expenses, company mobile phone, and a pension plan, is provided according to the policies of The Antenna Company.
  • This vacancy concerns a partnership of which TU/e is one of the participating parties. Employment will be with The Antenna Company.

    Information and application

    Further information can be obtained by using the following contact addresses:

    Dr. Diego Caratelli ( diego.caratelliatantennacompany , d.caratelliattue.nl ) Prof. Bart Smolders ( a.b.smoldersattue.nl ).

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