PostDoc on Numerical modelling of a sorption heating and cooling storage system

JOB DESCRIPTION
Energy Technology group, Department of Mechanical Engineering.

The Department of Mechanical Engineering considers as the core of their activities design, realization and analysis of new products, processes and materials. Besides the basis of (solid and fluid) mechanics, materials, control and thermodynamics, parts of mathematics, physics, chemistry and computing science are important supporting tools. The field is explored by a combination of modeling using fundamental concepts and applied engineering and technology. Automotive Engineering Science and Micro- amp; Nano-Scale Engineering are important departmental themes. The Mechanical Engineering Department comprises about 1000 students and 250 staff members.

The section Energy Technology performs research on heat transfer and thermofluids engineering. Energy Technology (ET) addresses engineering problems associated with energy conversion processes such as transport, utilization, implementation etc., and comprises many different disciplines. The research of our group is focused on three primary topics: heat transfer and transitional flows, microscale interphase processes, and small-scale renewable energy systems. One of the research projects is focusing on solar thermal in combination with heat storage.

The SWeKOS2 project (Sorptie Warmte en Koude Opslag Systeem) is performed in close collaboration with De Beijer RTB, Duiven, The Netherlands. The Beijer RTB specializes in innovation research and the development of new product / market combinations especially in the field of sustainable energy. The Beijer RTB consists of a group of technical specialists who realize numerous studies, research projects and product developments, including in the field of heat pumps, solar energy, energy storage and district heating. Besides De Beijer RTB, also TNO (www.tno.nl) is involved in the SWeKOS2 project. In the HeCoNet project (Sorption Heat & Cold in District Heating Networks) TU/e joins forces with De Beijer RTB and with ENGIE to complement the SWeKOS2 project with the development of a reduced-order model of a complete heat and cold storage system (tank, storage materials, heat exchangers, insulations, etcetera) which can then be used in simulations of the entire district heating network over longer periods. ENGIE is one of the most innovative energy and technology companies in the world, with more than 150,000 employees in 70 countries owing almost 300 wind farms, over 400 solar fields and almost 200 biomass and hydro power plants.

Short background

For a long time, thermochemical heat storage is considered as an attractive candidate to solve the mismatch problem between the heat demand and supply of solar energy. The advantages of thermochemical heat storage compared to other options are high storage density and almost loss-free storage. However, important fundamental obstacles still need to be tackled before this technique can be applied on larger scales, certainly when it comes to a marketable product. Heat and cold storage will play an important role in the advancement of district heating networks to close the gap between heat supply from sustainable energy sources and the demand for heat and cold by the connected consumers.

Problem description

Within the SWeKOS2 project a marketable compact and loss-free heat&cold storage system will be developed, which is produced in a cost-effective way and is equipped with one of the following thermochemical materials: modified Na2S and CaCl2 or K2CO3. This part will mainly be carried out by De Beijer RTB in collaboration with TNO. The postdoc project at TU/e focuses mainly on the development of a design tool for one module of the heat&cold storage system. In the HeCoNet project the SWeKOS2 project will be complemented with the development of a reduced-order model of a complete heat and cold storage system (tank, storage materials, heat exchangers, insulations, etcetera) which can then be used in simulations of an entire district heating network over longer periods.

  • A detailed calculation model will be developed at TU/e using COMSOL for calculation of the reactor/module performance using measured material characteristics as input. Charging and discharging reactor experiments as carried out at De Beijer RTB will be used for validation of the reactor model.
  • At a later stage of the project, the integration of the SWeKOS system in a number of different types of heat and cold installations for, for example, a house and / or an office will be further elaborated. To this end a reduced-order model needs to be developed which can be used in system analyses. The reduced-order model needs to be integrated into a system model of a district heating network, which can then be used in an optimization study of the whole system.

Tasks

  • The further development of a numerical model (using COMSOL) to simulate the whole charging and discharging cycle of one reactor module of a heat&cold storage system. As a starting point use can be made of an existing 3D-model which is developed in the framework of an earlier project. The numerical model for one reactor module will be validated with experiments as carried out at de Beijer RTB. Therefore, close contacts must be maintained with the company about the type of experiments that must / can be performed.
  • A reduced-order model needs to be developed of the heat&cold storage system which can be used in system analyses to study the energetic performance of the system. The reduced-order model needs to be integrated into an existing system model of a district heating network, which can then be used in a year simulation.

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

  • A master degree in Applied Mathematics, Physics or Engineering (Mechanical, Electrical or Sustainable Energy);
  • A good background in fluid mechanics and heat transfer;
  • A good background in numerical modeling using CFD and in programming with MATLAB;
  • Excellent communication skills and written/verbal knowledge of the English language;
  • Previous experience with subjects related to the analysis of energy systems is a pre.

CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT

  • A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university with the possibility to present your work at international conferences.
  • A full-time employment for 2 years (start date as soon as possible)
  • You will have free access to high-quality training programs on general skills, didactics and topics related to research and valorization.
  • A gross monthly salary and benefits in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement for Dutch Universities.
  • A broad package of fringe benefits (including an excellent technical infrastructure, moving expenses, and savings schemes).
  • Family-friendly initiatives are in place, such as an international spouse program, and excellent on-campus children day care and sports facilities.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
More information

Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more? Please contact
dr. C.C.M. Rindt, c.c.m.rindt[at]tue.nl

More information can be obtained from http://www.tue.nl and http://www.energy.tue.nl.

For information about terms of employment, click here. Please visit www.tue.nl/jobs to find out more about working at TU/e!

Application

We invite you to submit a complete application by using the 'apply now'-button on this page.
The application should include a:

  • Cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position.
  • Curriculum vitae, including a list of your publications, the contact information of three references and a list of international conference and journal contributions (if any).
  • List of five self-selected 'best publications'

We look forward to your application and will screen it as soon as we have received it. Screening will continue until the position has been filled.

We do not respond to applications that are sent to us in a different way.

Please keep in mind you can upload only 5 documents up to 2 MB each. If necessary please combine files.


Company

Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e)

Locations

Categories

Deadline for application

2021-02-28


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