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PhD Control for Offshore Wind-to-Hydrogen System

Research / Academic
Eindhoven

About FlexH2 Project

The project intends to explore the application of pure dc collection technology and integration in offshore wind farms and green hydrogen production. The research project is to start on January 1st, 2024 and will last four years.

FlexH2.0 is based on two key technological innovation pillars: (1) High-performance DC/DC power conversion technology and (2) a reliable control scheme for the offshore wind-to-hydrogen system. This project will explore the optimal design and control solutions for a cost-effective and reliable offshore wind-to-hydrogen system. FlexH2.0 also demonstrates the feasibility of the dc power conversion and collection technology at medium-voltage and GW levels, boosting the application of dc technology in commercial projects.

About this position

This PhD position aims to develop the second innovation pillar of the FlexH2.0 project, .i.e, a reliable control strategy for the wind-to-hydrogen system.

The FlexH2.0 offshore wind-to-hydrogen system is based on a pure dc grid structure, which is more sensitive to the fluctuation of input power and bus voltage. A fast and accurate control response is essential to ensure the balance between wind power and consumption power. However, the slow response of water electrolyzers increases the difficulty of realizing the supply-demand power balance. Besides, the black start-up and fault-handling schemes should also be researched to constitute a reliable and feasible control framework for the commercial offshore wind-to-hydrogen system.

The expected results of the PhD project will be as follows

  • Continuous operational control strategy for the offshore wind-to-hydrogen system in different operation scenarios.
  • Modeling and parameter design of controllers considering stability issues.
  • Reliable black-start and fault-handling schemes.
  • EMT simulation verification and control platform development


The PhD candidate will collaborate closely with industrial partner Shell to address the specific challenges as follows:

1. System-level structure design and interface requirements

  • Functionality design of offshore wind-to-hydrogen system with pure dc structure
  • Design of system-level structure for offshore wind-to-hydrogen system
  • Classification of operation scenarios and the constraints/requirements for control schemes
  • Verification through EMT simulation


2. Continuous control strategy for the offshore wind-to-hydrogen system

  • Review and comparison of existing control schemes
  • Continuous operational control strategy for different scenarios
  • Modeling and parameter design of control loops considering stability issues
  • EMT simulation studies and verification


3. Black-start and fault-handling schemes

  • Reliable black-start method
  • Configurations for fault protection equipment and fault-handling strategy
  • EMT simulation studies and verification


4. Experimental Verification in MV-KW FlexH2.0 Concept Demonstrator

  • Controller design of down-scale demonstrator platform.
  • Validation of system-level control strategies in continuous operation mode.
  • Validation of black-start and fault-handling schemes.


Requirements:

We are looking for a candidate who meets the following requirements:

  • You are a talented and enthusiastic young researcher.
  • You have an MSc degree in electrical engineering or any other relevant program.
  • You have theoretical and applied knowledge of modeling, analysis, and control of power electronics systems.
  • You have hands-on experience on DSP/FPGA control board design and coding.
  • Experience in wind turbine/wind farm control and stability analysis is a big plus.
  • You have good communicative skills, and the attitude to partake successfully in the work of a research team.
  • You are creative and ambitious, hard-working, and persistent.
  • You have a good command of the English language (Spoken and Written).

Salary Benefits:

A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university, in an interdisciplinary setting and within an international network. You will work on a beautiful, green campus within walking distance of the central train station. In addition, we offer you:

  • Full-time employment for four years, with an intermediate evaluation (go/no-go) after nine months. You will spend 10% of your employment on teaching tasks.
  • Salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, paid pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, scale P (min. €2,770 max. €3,539).
  • A year-end bonus of 8.3% and annual vacation pay of 8%.
  • High-quality training programs and other support to grow into a self-aware, autonomous scientific researcher. At TU/e we challenge you to take charge of your own learning process.
  • An excellent technical infrastructure, on-campus children's day care and sports facilities.
  • An allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • A Staff Immigration Team and a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) for international candidates.
Work Hours:

38 hours per week

Address:

De Rondom 70