PhD position: Development of a machine learning platform for a novel pressure and acoustic measurement system for wind turbine blades

WorkplaceZurich, Zurich region, Switzerland


PhD position: Development of a machine learning platform for a novel pressure and acoustic measurement system for wind turbine blades

AeroSense seeks to appoint three highly motivated Ph.D. candidates at ETH Zurich in collaboration with the University of Applied Sciences Rapperswil (HSR). These positions offer an exciting opportunity to work with leading experts across the world in the area of wind energy, and is funded by the Innosuisse/SNF BRIDGE Discovery programme.

Job description

The scientific aim of AeroSense is to develop a first ever MEMS-based surface pressure and acoustic smart measurement system that is thin, non-intrusive, robust, modular, low power and self-sustaining, wirelessly transmitting, easy to install and cost-effective for wind turbines. A prototype will be tested in the wind tunnel and on full-size operating wind turbines in the field. The Advisory Board of the AeroSense project consists of leading academic institutions and companies from Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, The Netherlands and the USA.

This PhD position will primarily focus on the development of a machine learning platform for obtaining the flow angles of the wind turbine blades as well as for effective data usage. This includes development of algorithms to quantify the effect of non-measured load cases on non-measured quantities, for clustering of surface pressure and acoustic emissions distributions data for fault diagnostics, for using the surface pressure distribution and acoustic emissions along the span of the blade to classify a blade’s cross-sectional deformation/damage, for integrating the surface pressure data in the state-space formulation of a Kalman Filter for better predictions at un-measured locations, as well as for Bayesian updating of simulation models and airfoil lift and drag data via surface pressure distribution data. This doctoral student position is financed for a minimum of three years with a starting date of April 1st, 2020. Primary advisor is Prof. E. Chatzi, (D-BAUG ETH Zurich), co-advisor is Prof. L. Benini (D-ITET ETH Zurich).

Your profile

Applicants must hold a M.Sc. Diploma or equivalent in in civil, mechanical or electrical engineering, geosciences, physics, applied mathematics, computer sciences or related fields, and be at the beginning of their research career. Principal qualifications include strong analytical and quantitative skills in numerical analysis, programming, high-performance computing, as well as skills in aerodynamics, data analysis and modelling, and interest in laboratory-based experimentation and engineering applications. A solid knowledge of English as the spoken and written language of work is mandatory. We expect good interpersonal skills, the ability to thrive in a diverse, multidisciplinary environment, ability to present work in international conference, as well as the willingness to travel to the USA for a number of weeks for field measurements.

ETN Mobility Rules: Researchers can be of any nationality. At the time of recruitment, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity in the country of their host organization for more than 12 months in the three years immediately before the reference date. Researchers must be in the first four years of their research careers and not yet have a doctoral degree.

ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.


We look forward to receiving your online application including: a letter of motivation, a CV, electronic copies of your academic diplomas and certificates, and contact details for two referees. The applications will be reviewed starting February 1st, 2020 with the intent to conclude the search by the end of February, 2020. Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered.

For further information please visit our website https://www.?" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"> .

Questions regarding the position should be directed by email to Prof. Eleni Chatzi ( chatzi [at] ibk[.]baug[.] ) and Prof. Luca Benini ( luca.benini [at] iis[.]ee[.] ). Please do not send applications via email.


In your application, please refer to and reference JobID 47040.

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