PhD position - Sustainable storage for a resilient hydropower for a resilient future energy system

ETH Zürich
Zürich, Switzerland
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
University/Academia/Research/Think tank
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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Within the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 847585, ETH Zurich is offering a 42-month PhD position for an early-stage researchers (ESR) in in the area of sustainable energy systems.

Job Description

We are looking for a talented doctoral candidate working on the topic of reservoir sedimentation and its future implications for a sustainable hydropower use. In addition to numerical modelling, this project also involves field measurements at selected reservoir sites in Switzerland. The anticipated outcome of this project is a better understanding of the efficiency and sustainability of different sediment management strategies, which may stimulate the development of improved guidelines on sediment evacuation from reservoirs.

A planned secondment of 3 months at the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) in Bern/Ittigen (CH) is part of this project. During this secondment, the candidate will develop a holistic overview of the current and future state of reservoir sedimentation in Switzerland. Long-term scenarios with a time horizon up to the year 2100 for different reservoir characteristics will be scaled up to the Swiss fleet of storage reservoirs. This will allow the SFOE to assess the future reduction of the seasonal storage capacity of reservoirs with less uncertainty. To achieve this, the candidate will be working closely with the technical experts at SFOE.

The results will be communicated in scientific journals as well as at international conferences and will be shared with relevant stakeholders. The recommendations and scenarios developed within this project will have a direct impact on the successful implementation of the Swiss Energy Strategy 2050 for which hydropower is key for electricity storage and flexibility.