We have vacancies for up to three PhD positions at the Department of
Engineering Cybernetics at NTNU.
PhD positions in control systems for autonomous marine robots
This is NTNU
NTNU is a broad-based university with a technical-scientific profile and a
focus in professional education. The university is located in three cities
with headquarters in Trondheim.
At NTNU, 9,000 employees and 42,000 students work to create knowledge for a
You will find more information about working at NTNU and the application
About the position
The positions are for three years with the possibility of one-year extension
for teaching assistant duties, and are connected to the ERC Advanced Grant
Project Control of light vehicle-manipulator systems (CRÈME) and the NTNU
VISTA Centre for Autonomous Robotic Operations Subsea (CAROS).
The objective of the ERC project is to develop a control framework that
enables the advent of light and freely moving autonomous robots that can
perform complex and versatile operations in challenging environments,
involving highly precise and forceful physical interactions.
The NTNU VISTA Centre for Autonomous Robotic Operations Subsea (CAROS) is an
interdisciplinary research centre between the NTNU Departments of Engineering
Cybernetics and Marine Technology and Equinor on autonomous underwater robotic
operations with focus on resident autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) that
are supported by subsea docking systems for energy charging and communication.
The VISTA Center is awarded by Equinor and the Norwegian Academy of Science
and Letters, funded for 5 years in collaboration with host institution NTNU.
Together with ground-breaking research on articulated underwater robots and
autonomy we proceed towards a game changer in offshore oil and gas activities
in terms of increased efficiency in marine operations and lower CO2 footprint.
The proposed scope will contribute to higher uptime of subsea production units
as well as higher marine environmental capabilities in case of incidents. The
addressed research will also be of high relevance for ocean science and other
marine industries such as maintenance and inspection of offshore wind
installations and aquaculture. The methods will be demonstrated and tested on
the NTNU snake robot Eelume, an articulated intervention-AUV (AIAUV), as
well as remotely operated vehicles (ROV) with manipulators.
The role of the PhD candidates will be to develop efficient methods for
Autonomous docking and intervention operations: To achieve truly
autonomous resident robots subsea, the research questions of autonomous
docking and autonomous intervention need to be solved. A permanent docking
station on the seafloor, where the subsea robot can charge the batteries and
transfer the results of a mission, will reduce the current need for frequent
launch and recovery operations. For fully autonomous resident robots,
autonomous docking is required. Moreover, while existing resident subsea
robots are still remotely operated, autonomous intervention is required for
truly autonomous resident robots.
To develop accurate and robust methods for vision-based autonomous docking
of subsea robots.
To develop methods achieving high-accuracy position and force control for
autonomous intervention operations with light subsea robots, including
small remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and articulated intervention-
The candidates will work within a highly competent research group. The
tasks are academically challenging and at the same time industrially
Duties of the position
Research into efficient methods for control of autonomous marine robots
Cooperation with the research group
Upon agreement with the candidate and the department, the position can be
extended to four years if the candidate undertakes teaching duties
Required selection criteria
The PhD-positions´ main objective is to qualify for work in research
positions. The qualification requirement is that you have completed a master's
degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic
background in Engineering Cybernetics/Automatic Control/Control
Engineering/Robotics or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in
terms of NTNU's grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous
studies, you must have an equally good academic foundation. If you are unable
to meet these criteria you may be considered only if you can document that you
are particularly suitable for education leading to a PhD degree.
Master students in their final year are also invited to apply. Employment will
then be postponed until the master degree is finished.
Our research has civilian objectives. However, equipment restricted by export
licenses and ITAR (International Traffic in Arms Regulations) is being used
in the research project. Applicants that are citizens of Norway, Australia,
Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, EU or NATO countries are eligible. Other
applicants are required to provide evidence of eligibility to use such
equipment for their application to be considered/in their application.
The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force
concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and Regulations concerning the
degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosodophiae Doctor (PhD) in
artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and
Preferred selection criteria
Background in nonlinear control theory and either robot control or marine
control systems is a requirement.
Applicants who do not master a Scandinavian language and do not have
English as mother tongue, must document a thorough knowledge of English.
The following tests can be used as such documentation: TOEFL, IELTS or
Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) or Cambridge Certificate
of Proficiency in English (CPE). Minimum scores are: TOEFL: 600 (paper-
based test), 92 (Internet-based test), IELTS: 6.5, with no section
lower than 5.5 (only Academic IELTS test accepted), CAE/CPE: grade B or
• High self-motivation and high motivation for the project
• Intrinsic curiosity and open-minded attitude
• Independent working style
• Very good communication skills, good in collaborating with others in an
interdisciplinary research environment
being part of an ERC Advanced Grant Project and NTNU VISTA center
exciting and stimulating tasks in a strong international academic
an open and inclusive work environment with dedicated colleagues
favourable terms in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
Salary and conditions
PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at
gross from NOK 491 200 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and
seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian
Public Service Pension Fund.
Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD
programme in Engineering Cybernetics within three months of employment, and
that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment
The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force
concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to
Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates
who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with
the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU.
After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of
About the application
The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the
assessment must be in English.
Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Please
note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available
on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows
clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out
The application must include:
A motivation letter (0.5-2 pages), indicating how the applicant
envisages her/his contribution within the project
CV which includes information about education background and work
Certified copies of transcripts from Bachelor & Master degrees. Candidates
from universities outside Norway must include a Diploma Supplement or
similar documentation, which describes in detail the program of study, the
grading system and the rights for further studies associated with the
Contact information for two references (including email addresses and
English language proficiency documentation (e.g. TOEFL, IELTS, etc.).
This requirement is waived for applicants whose mother tongue is English,
as well as for applicants from Scandinavian countries.
If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to
attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both
bachelor's and master's education, in addition to other higher education.
Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already
have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well.
Publications and other academic works that the applicant would like to be
considered in the evaluation must accompany the application. Joint works will
be considered. If it is difficult to identify the individual applicant's
contribution to joint works, the applicant must include a brief description of
his or her contribution.
In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be
placed on education, experience and personal suitability, in terms of the
qualification requirements specified in the advertisement.
Incomplete applications will not be considered.
NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality
according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA.
Working at NTNU
A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified
candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or
The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural
scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of
200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools,
kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the
world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available.
Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including
international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family
life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.
As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the
development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are
In accordance with The Public Information Act (Offentleglova), your name,
age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested
not to have your name entered on the list of applicants.
Questions about the position can be directed to Project leader NTNU: Kristin
Y. Pettersen, Professor, Department of Engineering Cybernetics, e-mail:
Please submit your application electronically via jobbnorge.no with your CV,
diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be
considered. Diploma Supplement is required to attach for European Master
Diplomas outside Norway. Chinese applicants are required to provide
confirmation of Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI).
If you are invited for interview you must include certified copies of
transcripts and reference letters. Please refer to the application number
2021/49841 when applying.
Application deadline: 30.09.2021.
NTNU - knowledge for a better world
NTNU - knowledge for a better world
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge
for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.
Department of Engineering Cybernetics (ITK)
Engineering cybernetics is the study of automatic control and monitoring of
dynamic systems. We develop the technologies of tomorrow through close
cooperation with industry and academia, both in Norway and internationally.
The Department contributes to the digitalization, automation and robotization
of society. The Department of Engineering Cybernetics is one of seven
departments in the Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical
30th September 2021
NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Fulltime (3 jobs) Fulltime (%)
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