PhD Position Digital twin for data driven control, commissioning and continuous design optimisation of positive energy neighborhoods

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven

Belgium

October 22, 2022

Description

PhD Position Digital twin for data driven control, commissioning and

continuous design optimisation of positive energy neighborhoods

(ref. BAP-2022-712)

Last modification : Wednesday, September 21, 2022

You will become a PhD student in Building Physics and Sustainable Design Section of the Department of Civil Engineering at KU Leuven and the SEB DEMO team of VITO both active in the EnergyVille research center. The Building Physics and Sustainable Design Section is active in Leuven, Genk and Ghent. The section's research targets heat and mass transfer in porous building materials, durability of (highly insulated) building components, and the energy use and indoor air quality in buildings and the built environment. The SEB DEMO (Unit Sustainable Energy and Built environment; team District Energy Modeling) team of VITO focuses on energy in buildings and the built environment. The KU Leuven promotor for his PhD will be prof.dr.ir.-arch. Dirk Saelens. At VITO dr.ir.-arch. Stijn Verbeke will supervise the research. You will work both in Leuven and Genk. The intention is to spend 50% of your time in EnergyVille, Genk.

Website unit

Project

The backbone of the PhD is a toolchainthat constructs a digital twin of the PEN, relying on capturing operationaldata and subsequent automated data analytics. In the setup of such digitalbackbone for a PEN, the PhD student will research amongst others:

· The type of operational datarequired at appliance level, building level, street level,… and theirtechnical characteristics such as frequency, granularity and precision

· Protocols to gather such datairrespective of vendor and owner of the equipment

· GDPR proof methods to handledata at PEN level (scalable privacy-preserving big data aggregation: respectprivacy while still having maximum insights from data at lower granularity)

· Methodological approaches totrain the digital twin model by the gathered data (initial training), andmethods to iteratively update the digital twin of the district

The digital twin will be used tocontinuously monitor the performance of the district under study and comparethis to the predicted performance goals. The PhD student will develop aproof-of-concept application to support the management of the PEN. Thisapplication will be able to suggests adjustments to the PEN control strategies(controlling multiple assets such as local storage, EV charging, etc. andmultiple energy vectors) and allows to evaluate the impact of changes in thePEN technology mix.

The research will be based on past andcurrent research at the Building Physics and Sustainable Design Section at KULeuven and the SEB DEMO team (Unit Sustainable Energy and Built environment) atVITO. There will be a close collaboration with other researchers from EnergyVille.

Profile

The PhD-project is focusing on energy neutral and zero-carbon buildings and built environments. Knowledge of building energy simulation modeling is essential. Independence and initiative, reliability in team work and good com­munication skills are similarly valuable. Finally, a suitable knowledge of spoken and written English is required.

The position is open for applicants holding a Master of Science in Engineering (or equivalent): Architecture, Civil Engineering, Energy, Mechanical Engineering or Electrical Engineering with a strong interest and experience in the field of energy in buildings. Knowledge and experience in the following fields will be relevant:

· Building energy simulation, especially MODELICA (to model buildings, equipment and electrical systems)

· Design and operation of buildings and the built environment

· Object-oriented programming, software development tools

· Integration of Renewable Energy in the built environment

· Use of design optimisation in buildings and the built environment

Please indicate clearly in the motivation letter what your experience and knowledge in the mentioned fields is and why you are interested and motivated to acquire expertise in the other fields.

Offer

· The successful applicant will receivea full-time scholarship for four years to do research to obtain the PhD-degreein Civil Engineering

· You will participate inexciting scientific projects on PENs. The research will be carried out at theEnergyVille research center in Genk and at the Building Physics Section from theKU Leuven.

· EnergyVille is activelycollaborating with industry which enables you to expand your professionalnetwork.

· You will receive training fromthe Arenberg Doctoral School at University of Leuven, one of the top EuropeanUniversities, providing an excellent research environment.

· You will have access tostate-of-the-art technologies, core facilities and technical support

· You will gain experience inmany transferal skills and receive personalized mentoring.

· You will also have theopportunity to participate in local and international conferences and thusexpend your scientific network

· Funding is available but thesuccessful candidate will be encouraged to also apply for additionalfellowships

Thecandidate will first have to outline a more elaborated project description anddefend this before a jury before being selected for the scholarship. You canapply while currently being a MSc-student, but you have to have obtained your MSc degree before the date of appointment.

Interested?

For more information please contact prof. dr. ir.-arch Dirk Saelens, tel.: +32 16 32 13 43, mail: dirk.saelens@kuleuven.be.

KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at diversiteit.HR@kuleuven.be.

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