Postdoc in Resilience Engineering: Sensing Systems for Monitoring the Performance of Wet Infrastructure

University of Twente
Enschede, Netherlands
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
University/Academia/Research/Think tank
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 


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Job description

Are you passionate about resilience of civil infrastructure, particularly about wet infrastructure? Do you want to join an extensive interdisciplinary research and capacity building programme Designing Systems for Informed Resilience Engineering (DeSIRE) in 4TU Resilience Engineering research centre?

We are looking for a postdoc to reinforce our team. Together with academic and industrial partners, we seek to carrying out an inventory review of exiting sensing technologies and measurement interpretation approaches for wet infrastructure.

The challenge
Waterways are important assets of the wet infrastructure. For example, locks and weirs control the water level and support navigation. The wear and tear of these structures and their constituents (e.g., walls in locks), and erosion/scour of canal beds result from increasing numbers of evermore powerful ships, and floods/draughts (consequences of global warming). Asset owners seek, first, for understanding and, then, characterizing the performance of these structures to (i) make them resilient (accommodating uncertainties that future brings) and (ii) plan maintenance activities (prolonging their operational lives). Future loading scenarios can be simulated on numerical replicas of structures. But first, accurate input data is needed. With appropriate sensing systems the data (or measurements) can be acquired. Scarce studies of available sensing systems and their applications for monitoring locks and weirs introduce then need for an inventory review. In addition, the following monitoring studies could be undertaken:

  1. propulsion generated by ships approaching/leaving locks, thus damaging canal beds,
  2. deformations of locks under operational loads,
  3. fluctuation of water level and velocity of the flow,
  4. (sub)soil surrounding wet infrastructure in relation to soil compaction and groundwater flow/seepage.

The review will strengthen ongoing collaborations with existing partners (Rijkswaterstaat, Waterschap Vechtstromen, Heijmans, Province of Overijssel, Camino network), who provide access to assets and practitioners managing and operating them, develop domain expertise and extend our network to Geotechnical group at Deltares.

Anticipated outcomes of the project

  • Inputs for new proposals and strengthen collaboration with existing partners on ongoing projects.
  • Publications: review of sensing technologies and results from a case study.
  • Contribution to educational materials.

Your profile

  • You hold a PhD degree in Civil Engineering or relevant engineering related field.
  • You have demonstrated affinity with wet infrastructure, and expertise in sensor technologies and their applications in civil engineering.
  • You have excellent writing skills.
  • You are a creative person that shows initiative with a hands-on mentality.
  • You have excellent communication skills.
  • You are fluent in English, both spoken and written.
  • You have a high degree of responsibility and independence, while collaborating with close colleagues, researchers and other university staff.

Our offer

We offer you a very challenging position in an inspiring multidisciplinary environment. The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in which internationalization is an important part of the strategic agenda.

  • We offer a one-year full time Postdoc position.
  • You will be part of a dedicated team with which you will collaborate extensively with industry.
  • A gross salary between € 3.353,- and € 4.402,- per month, depending on experience and qualifications.
  • An annual holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, and an annual year-end bonus of 8.3%.
  • A solid pension scheme.
  • Minimum of 29 leave days in case of full-time employment.
  • Professional and personal development programs.
  • The University of Twente is situated on a green and lively campus with lots of facilities for sports and other extracurricular activities.

Information and application

You are welcome to contact Dr Rolands Kromanis (email: , phone: ), Prof. Kathelijne Wijnberg ( ) and Prof. André Dorée ( ) for any questions you might have.

Please upload your application, including your CV, motivation letter and qualification documents via the ‘Apply now’ button before 4 January, 2021. We will hold interviews in the week commencing 18 January, 2021. 

About the organization

University of Twente (UT)

University of Twente (UT) has entered the new decade with an ambitious, new vision, mission and strategy. As ‘the ultimate people-first university of technology' we are rapidly expanding on our High Tech Human Touch philosophy and the unique role it affords us in society. Everything we do is aimed at maximum impact on people, society and connections through the sustainable utilisation of science and technology. We want to contribute to the development of a fair, digital and sustainable society through our open, inclusive and entrepreneurial attitude. This attitude permeates everything we do and is present in every one of UT's departments and faculties. Building on our rich legacy in merging technical and social sciences, we focus on five distinguishing research domains: Improving healthcare by personalised technologies; Creating intelligent manufacturing systems; Shaping our world with smart materials; Engineering our digital society; and Engineering for a resilient world.

As an employer, University of Twente offers jobs that matter. We equip you as a staff member to shape new opportunities both for yourself and for our society. With us, you will be part of a leading tech university that is changing our world for the better. We offer an open, inclusive and entrepreneurial climate, in which we encourage you to make healthy choices, for example, with our flexible, customisable conditions.