UiT Norges arktiske universitet

Fakultet for naturvitenskap og teknologi - Institutt for fysikk og teknologi

UiT The Arctic University of Norway with its main campus located in Tromsø is the northernmost university in the world. Its focus on climate and environment is clearly dictated by the geographical location at the edge of the Arctic. The main task of the Faculty of Science and Technology is to conduct research and teaching at high national and international level. Prioritized research areas include energy, climate, environment, maritime, marine, nano-, space-, and information technology; addressing both general topics and topics relevant for the High North.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow (3 years) in renewable energy

The Department of Physics and Technology announces a vacant position for a 3-year Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in the area of renewable energy at UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Physics and Technology.


The position is part of the Arctic Centre for Sustainable Energy (ARC), an interdisciplinary initiative focusing on Arctic challenges and conditions within renewable energy implementation and greenhouse gas management. The centre combines expertise in various disciplines to tackle specific challenges related to the deployment of renewable energy under Arctic conditions. The creation and implementation of technologies necessary to adapt the current energy system into a more sustainable, competitive and secure one, relies on the use of properly designed materials that can be used for the creation of low cost high efficiency solar cells, reactive sun tracking or heterostructures with optimized optical, electrical and electrochemical properties for energy storage or sensing technology. To succeed in this intent, capabilities for screening properties and synthetizing structures with the desired performance is of outmost importance. It is thanks to this fundamental approach one can complement the interest of local industrial partners to tackle specific challenges in the Artic environment.


The Department of Physics and Technology consists of five research groups: (1) Earth Observation, (2) Energy and Climate, (3) Machine Learning, (4) Space Physics, and (5) Ultrasound, Microwaves and Optics (UMO). The department provides education on the Bachelor, Master, and PhD levels, and comprises 22 permanent scientific positions and a technical/administrative staff of 12 persons.


This position will be associated with the Energy and Climate group at the Department of Physics and Technology. The group consists of four permanent academic staffs and several postdoctoral and PhD fellows. Within the Energy and Climate group, the position is affiliated with the discipline of material for renewable energy application led by professor Matteo Chiesa.


Further information about the position, UiT, and project details is available by contacting professor Matteo Chiesa by email matteo.chiesa@uit.no or telephone +47 41 30 63 43.


The position’s field of research and other duties

Concentrating solar technology (CST) – such as concentrating photovoltaics (CPV) and concentrating solar thermal power (CSP) – represents one of the most promising technologies for the successful implementation of future decarbonization plans, and their installed capacity is expected to grow at a fast rate in the coming years. However, the actual potential for CSTs to lead the future energy market and follow the predicted growth trends strongly depends on the accurate characterization of surface solar resources. In an Arctic perspective, concentrating solar technology can be adapted by smart integration with a geological heat storage scheme to achieve the possibility of dispatching the need for heat from summer to winter.


CSTs are designed to exploit solar irradiance coming from a small solid angle centered on the sun – the so-called direct normal irradiance (DNI) – by concentrating the beam many hundred times in order to feed a power conversion unit.


While accurate characterization is essential for the deployment of CST technology, improving the efficiency of the system and adapting it to the Arctic climatic region is also crucial. While there are many approaches in enhancing the system, performances depending on the technology in view, a straightforward approach is merely to reverse engineering/redesigning the relevant hardware component or replacing such component with more efficient recognized ones.


Under this premises, the goals of this project are as follows:

  1. To develop a well-integrated set of reliable tools comprising meteorological instruments/procedures for the analysis and the assessment of concentrating solar technologies efficiency in isolated Arctic conditions
  2. By using additive manufacturing techniques and reverse engineering/designing, explore different solar receiver configuration concepts and materials (mini-prototype), with the view finding the most suitable for the Arctic region.
  3. Developing characterization techniques/tools to study the underlying surface forces between graphene and GaAs substrate as well as modeling the electrical performance of the III-V multi-junction solar cell in the Arctic climate condition


The positions include teaching, supervision or equivalent duties for UiT of up to 25 % of the position.


The role of the Postdoctoral Research Fellow

The successful candidate will be in charge of

  • Carrying out an observational campaign for solar radiation resources characterization, also including the development of instrumentation specially designed for arctic conditions, such as a 6-band 1-axis forward-scattering irradiometer and small portable spectro-polarimeters.
  • Develop physically based atmospheric optical properties regionalization model development based on multisource data (ground observations + remotely sensed data) integration and radiative transfer/atmospheric boundary layer 1D-2D models.
  • Assess the impact of albedo on GHI trends (spectral, angular and attenuation), and future scenarios.
  • Develop physical based models for the performance of the solar receiver in the Arctic climate with the goal of finding an optimal design.
  • Demonstrate a working 3D prototype of the proposed solar receiver design.
  • Modelling the electrical performance of III-IV multi-junction solar in the Arctic region under concentrated solar radiation and validating the model with field data.
  • Leading the campaign for the characterization of graphene grown in semiconductors.


The successful candidate should also be closely working with a PhD student whose main job is to directly grow graphene on non-metal materials to promote better compatibility with solid-state electronics devices.



This position requires a Norwegian doctoral degree within applied physics or material science and engineering or similar, or a corresponding foreign doctoral degree recognized as equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree.


We are looking for candidates with documented and solid knowledge in physics, mathematics, statistics, and programming. The successful candidate must document knowledge of growth of material for energy applications and advance characterization methodology. A solid understanding of numerical methods is of great importance, and preferably experience with numerical solutions of non-linear partial differential equations. Experience in the field of renewable energy both in terms of large-scale deployment and renewable source assessment is necessary and must be documented.


Other skills expected from the postdoctoral fellow includes the ability to understand research group management and supervision of others, ability to establish contacts and network with other groups or colleagues pursuing similar research agendas and the ability to organize and teach a class or a course.


Documented experience in terms of published or unpublished papers that demonstrate expertise in the above fields is a requirement.


Other required qualification skills include:


  • Excellence in previous work and good track records
  • Independence and self-motivation
  • Creativity and ability to think outside the box
  • Excellent work ethic and commitment to the job
  • Proficient in the use of Computer Aided Design software and simulation software (preferable COMSOL Multiphysics)
  • Familiarity with additive manufacturing design and processes
  • Familiarity with various manufacturing processes such as forging, CNC machining, injection molding, additive manufacturing
  • Experience with Design of Experiments
  • Experience with reverse engineering or combination of design change/material substitution/process change to enhance performance, reduce cost or increase manufacturing efficiency
  • Experience in programming in either Python, Matlab or C#


International experience is an advantage. Emphasis is given to personal suitability.



Your application must include:

  • Application and motivation letter (max 1 page)
  • CV (max 2 pages)
  • Description of your past research project and its relevance to the advertised position (max 1 page)
  • Description of your academic production (track record) including highlights of three most important works for the advertised position (max 1 page)
  • Academic works, up to five. The doctoral thesis is regarded as one work
  • Project proposal (max 1 page)
  • Form for documentation of teaching qualifications
  • Diplomas and transcripts
  • Three references, preferably including the PhD supervisor


Having a PhD degree is required before commencement in the position. If you are in the process of completing your PhD, you must document that you have submitted your PhD thesis by the application deadline and attach a statement from your supervisor concerning termination of your PhD studies.


All documents must be in English or a Scandinavian language. The application must be submitted electronically through Jobbnorge.


We offer

We offer an interesting project funded by the Research Council of Norway, opportunities to travel and meet other leading scientists within the field, independence in work, a fantastic work environment with nice colleagues, good remuneration, and a cosy hometown of Tromsø surrounded by the stunning landscape of Northern Scandinavia.


UiT also has good welfare arrangements for employees including beneficial arrangements for pension and insurances.


Remuneration of Postdoctoral Fellow positions are in salary code 1352. The starting salary is at a minimum 42 900 NOK/month in 2018 (pay grade 59). There is a 2 % deduction for contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund. In addition, UiT pays 12 % directly to the pension fund on top of the salary.


The objective of the appointment as a Postdoctoral Fellow is to qualify for work in senior academic positions, and no one may be appointed to more than one fixed term period at the same institution.


More information about moving to Norway: https://uit.no/mobility



We make the appointment in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and guidelines at UiT. At our website, you will find more information for applicants.


UiT The Arctic University of Norway has HR policy objectives that emphasize diversity, and encourages all qualified applicants to apply regardless of their age, gender, functional ability and national or ethnic background. The university is an IW (Inclusive Workplace) enterprise, and we will emphasize making the necessary adaptations to the working conditions for employees with reduced functional ability.


We process personal data given in an application or CV in accordance with the Personal Data Act. You may request to not be registered on the public list of applicants, but the University may decide that your name will be made public. You will receive advance notification in the event of such publication.


We look forward to receiving your application!

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  • Søknadsfrist
    28. februar 2019
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    UiT Norges arktiske universitet
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