PhD: The effect of in-situ impact on the remaining useful life of composite structures

Research / Academic

Composite structures are increasingly used in commercial aviation as primary aircraft structures. The design specifications require that the fatigue response of a composite structure with impact damage levels typical of those that could be developed during manufacturing, assembly, and in-service should be evaluated. This recommendation is generic enough and although it can be interpreted as the time of the impact is taking into consideration, there is no link with the damage state of the structure when the impact may occur.

This project examines the effect of in-situ impact on the damage accumulation process and its implications on the remaining useful life of composite structures. Emphasis will be given on characterizing the damage state as function of time that the impact occurs, impact location, and impact energy.

This research includes active participation within the REMAP European H2020 project 


The candidate should have a master degree in Aerospace/Aeronautics Engineering or Mechanical Engineering with solid background on mechanics of composite materials and experimental mechanics. A combination of strong mathematical/analytical skills and advanced programming skills is required. Understanding of the principles of structural health monitoring techniques such as Acoustic Emission, Lamb waves, Strain monitoring with optical fibres is advantageous for this position.

Salary Benefits:

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. You will have 232 hours of paid leave each year and in addition to your salary, at TU Delft you will receive an annual holiday allowance of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% of your salary. 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. TU Delft creates equal opportunities and encourages women to apply.

Work Hours:

38 hours per week


Kluyverweg 1