PhD Student in Melting/Solidification of Salt in a Molten Salt Nuclear Reactor

Delft University of Technology



The Faculty of Applied Sciences is the largest faculty of TU Delft, with around 550 scientists, a support staff of 250 and 1,800 students. The faculty conducts fundamental, application-oriented research and offers scientific education at the bachelor, master and doctoral levels. The faculty is active in the fields of Life and Health Science & Technology, Nanoscience, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Science & Technology, and Applied Physics.

The department of Radiation Science & Technology ( focuses on research and education in materials, energy and health with radiation as the common denominator. Fields of interest are sustainable nuclear energy, medical radioisotopes, materials for energy storage and conversion, medical technology for diagnosis and therapy, and advanced instrumentation.

Job Description

The EU is the largest nuclear electricity generator in the world. To stay at the leading edge, R&D focuses on Generation-IV reactors that excel on safety, sustainability, security, economy, and non-proliferation.

One of the most promising concepts is the Molten Salt Reactor (MSR), which has excellent safety characteristics, and which can operate either as a breeder reactor producing its own fuel, or as a burner reactor incinerating nuclear waste.

The European SAMOSAFER project focuses on new simulation models and tools validated with experiments to make sure the MSR can comply with the more stringent safety requirements expected in several decades from now.

In this project TU Delft has opened a new PhD position focusing on melting and solidification phenomena of salts in the MSR. The research involves both experimental and numerical work, and includes improvement of the physics models describing melting/solidification phenomena, the coding of these in new software tools, and the validation of the software with experiments. Finally the models and tools will be applied to improve the design of the European Molten Salt Fast Reactor.

Besides doing excellent research, the student will cooperate with the other members of the SAMOSAFER project and will present his/her work at project meetings and at conferences, and publish in scientific journals.

Keywords: melting/solidification, fluid mechanics, heat transfer, optical techniques for flow visualisation (LDA/PIV), modelling of transport phenomena, computational fluid dynamics and numerical analysis

Job Requirements

We are looking for an enthusiastic PhD student with background:

  • MSc in a relevant field, such as (applied) physics, mechanical engineering or fluid mechanics.
  • Creative in research with a sound academic attitude.
  • Excellent experimental, modelling and simulation skills.
  • Fluent in English, both in writing and speaking.
  • Good team player and able to work in a collaborative international environment.

Terms 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.

As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. 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.

Inform and Apply 

For more information about this vacancy, you can contact Dr. Martin Rohde, Associate Professor, e-mail: or +31 15 2786962.

To apply, please e-mail 1) a one-page motivation letter, 2) a detailed CV, 3) a grade list, 4) contact information of at least two references to Mrs. Trudy Beentjes, Put everything in one PDF-file. Although the position will remain open until filled, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications before June 30, 2019. Intended start of the research project is October 1, 2019.

In your application, please refer to


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