PhD student position in nuclear safeguards directed to the application of multivariate analysis techniques to existing and future nuclear fuel cycles
Uppsala University is a comprehensive research-intensive university with a strong international standing. Our mission is to pursue top-quality research and education and to interact constructively with society. Our most important assets are all the individuals whose curiosity and dedication make Uppsala University one of Sweden’s most exciting workplaces. Uppsala University has 44.000 students, 7.100 employees and a turnover of SEK 7 billion.
The Department of Physics and Astronomy, Division of Applied Nuclear Physics, conducts research in the areas of nuclear reactions (for applications like nuclear energy, cancer therapy or transmutation of nuclear waste), nuclear fuel diagnostics and safeguards (encapsulation of spent nuclear fuel, the future needs of nuclear power plants, nuclear safeguards and non-proliferation issues), neutron diagnostics for fusion energy (studying fusion as a possible future energy source in present day devices and for ITER) and interaction of high velocity ions in various materials (with applications ranging from archaeology and medicine to the ageing of materials in nuclear reactors). The Division of Applied Nuclear Physics offers training and expertise in instrumentation, numerical modelling and computer simulation of nuclear reactions and interactions as well as nuclear measurements techniques.
The fission group focuses on measurement techniques, instrumentation and analysis methods for the (fission) nuclear energy sector, for usage in nuclear fuel diagnostics and safeguards, and in future reactor concepts. We are developing techniques that utilize various radiation types to examine nuclear materials, e.g. neutron transmission tomography, gamma spectroscopy and tomography, and Cherenkov imaging.
Nuclear safeguards are measures undertaken by states to ensure compliance with international treaties and to prevent the use of nuclear materials for non-peaceful applications. The verification of nuclear material using non-destructive assay is an example of such measures. Traditionally, data from various instruments is typically analysed separately. We have however, based on earlier work, reason to believe that it is advantageous to simultaneously analyse multiple signatures using multivariate data analysis (MVA). The application of such analysis techniques to the field of nuclear safeguards is a relatively new approach, and our goal is to assess its potential.
Within this project, we want to investigate possibilities and limitations of applying MVA to data from non-destructive measurements with respect to verifying nuclear material in both existing and future nuclear fuel cycles (Gen IV). The work will include efforts to improve the capability to verify nuclear fuel on the gross and partial defect level especially before fuel encapsulation and storage in so-called difficult-to-access storages, as well as efforts to strengthen nuclear safeguards of future nuclear fuel cycles. With respect to Gen IV systems, such work may include e.g. detailed studies of Gen IV concepts. One example could be the Molten Salt Reactor concept and its different fuel cycle steps, in order to model material flows, detector systems, and modelled measurement data. It is also possible that the work will include experimental measurements of spent nuclear fuel from light water reactors, in order to validate the models.
As a doctoral student, you will perform research individually and together with research colleagues. You will present your work and findings in academic and non-academic contexts, participate in seminars, workshops, and at national and international conferences. You will take responsibility for your research project and activities that relate to your work and the work in your research group. You will specifically report to your supervisors regarding steps taken and progress made. In parallel, you are a doctoral student and as such you are required to take mandatory academic courses corresponding to requirements at the department.
You will perform modelling of e.g. reactor systems and nuclear material compositions using Monte Carlo based codes such as MCNP. You will also model detector responses and fuel properties, various detector systems and measurement signals from the chosen detector systems. You will implement multivariate analysis algorithms and perform data analysis. You may also participate in measurement campaigns for data collection in order to validate your models.
- A Master’s degree or equivalent in a field that is relevant for the research project, such as (but not limited to) Nuclear Engineering, Physics, Engineering Physics, Medical Physics or similar.
- Programming skills in and experience of e.g. MCNP, Geant, Serpent, MATLAB, Octave, Python, FORTRAN, C or C++.
- Excellent skills in written and spoken English.
Desirable qualifications and experience
- Experience of working with statistics and data analysis, possibly of multivariate data analysis.
- Experience of nuclear and/or particle physics instrumentation, detectors and data acquisition systems.
- Experience of using different simulation environments.
- Experience working in a physics-based research environment and of modelling experience, especially in applied nuclear physics.
- Ability to work effectively in a mixed gender, multi-cultural environment and to promote team spirit.
- Ability to work independently and take personal responsibility for the progression of the project is crucial.
The Doctoral student position is a 4-year appointment, and the candidate will primarily devote the time to his/her own research and studies. Extension, up to a maximum of five years, may be possible by including department duties at a level of at most 20%, typically teaching.
The position is fully financed and the salary is in accordance with local guidelines at Uppsala University.
The applicant must be eligible for Postgraduate studies at Uppsala University. Information on post-graduate education, enrolment as a doctoral student in The Higher Education Act and Higher Education Ordinance, and rules and regulations for doctoral students at Uppsala University can be found here.
Uppsala University strives to be an inclusive workplace that promotes equal opportunities and attracts qualified candidates who can contribute to the University’s excellence and diversity. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and from people of all backgrounds.
The application, written in Swedish or English, shall include
- A personal application letter,
- curriculum vitae,
- a copy of your degree and your grades,
- a copy of, or link to, your thesis work
- two references, at least one from academia, and a letter of recommendation
- personal circumstances that may affect our judgement of your qualifications
- list of publication (if your work has been published), and
- any other documentation that you want us to consider.
Rules governing Ph.D. candidates are set out in the Higher Education Ordinance Chapter 5, §§ 1-7 and in Uppsala university's rules and guidelines.
Salary: According to local agreement for PhD students and teaching assistants.
Starting date: 01-09-2018, temporary position ending 31-08-2022.
Type of position: Full time position.
For further information about the position please contact
Docent Sophie Grape, tel +46 18 471 5842, e-mail: Sophie.email@example.com.
You are welcome to submit your application no later than 30 May 2018, UFV-PA 2018/1388.
Are you considering moving to Sweden to work at Uppsala University? If so, you will find a lot of information about working and living in Sweden at www.uu.se/joinus. You are also welcome to contact International Faculty and Staff Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please do not send offers of recruitment or advertising services. Applications must be submitted as described in this advertisement.
Placement: Department of Physics and Astronomy
Type of employment: Full time , Temporary position longer than 6 months
Pay: Fixed salary
Number of positions: 1
Working hours: 100 %
County: Uppsala län
Ellena Papaioannou, Seko
Suzanne Borén Andersson, TCO/ST 018-471 6251
Per Sundman, Saco-rådet 018-471 1485
Number of reference: UFV-PA 2018/1388
Last application date: 2018-05-30