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Postdoc in Monitoring oil components in produced water by advanced fluorescence signal interpretation

      Date : July 2, 2020

      The Danish Hydrocarbon Research and Technology Centre (DHRTCDTU), Technical University of Denmark (DTU), invites applicants for positions on investigations of optimization of treatment of produced water. DHRTC is established by the Danish Underground Consortium and DTU. As part of a national strategy on oil and gas, the research centre is an ambitious, targeted effort to improve various aspects of production and recovery of oil and gas from the Danish North Sea within three areas: reduced operating costs, increased extraction and reducing environmental impact. This position is within the new program on produced water management with the goal to reach zero harmful discharge from the DUC fields in the North Sea. The particular position is offered in collaboration with Centre for Resource Engineering, CERE, DTU and Department of Food Science, University of Copenhagen.

      During oil production, approximately 3 times more water is produced. This water is, according to regulations, cleaned for most contaminants. The cleaning efficiency is impacted by the oil and water chemistry and the complex surface-active components added to facilitate production. During production this may be monitored on-line by methods such as fluorescence spectroscopy. This project investigates how deep insight into fluorescence signals from complex matrices can be used to improve, control and optimize water purification processes.

      Responsibilities and tasks
      Are you interested in fluorescence of complex matrices and how to process data into useful information for process control? Then this position will give you a lot of interesting challenges. The position will be an integrated part of the off-shore produced water management program with the focus on further reducing discharge of harmful components to the environment from reservoirs the Danish part of the North Sea. In this context, the candidate is expected to perform innovative, fundamental and applied research on understanding the complexity of fluorescence of oil-in-water dispersions and solutions. This project aims to identify key fluorescence based quantities for monitoring applied in enhanced cleaning of the water and reduce discharge. The objective of the project is to develop a) an understanding of the complex signal affected by inner filter effects and matrix effects from both dissolved and dispersed oil in water, b) how to use this insight in developing a new fluorescence based approach and c) how to use the information from fluorescence spectra in advanced control of water treatment processes. It will help push the treatment of produced water an important step further towards the goal of zero harmful discharge. You will also be expected to develop hardware from existing commercial parts.

      You will be responsible for the development of the spectrometer in collaboration with external partners and will use both synthetic samples and samples from other projects in the program. This will require a well-established connection to other projects. Co-supervising of MSc students working within the program and collaboration with other researchers and students are required. The team will participate in a growing cross-disciplinary research program, involving researchers at DTU and other Danish universities, research institutes, foreign universities and industry. The team will have access to unique field and laboratory data sets and samples to test concepts and methods developed at the centre.

      Candidates for this position should:

      • Have a PhD degree in physics, chemistry, chemical engineering or other relevant areas;
      • Possess proven laboratory skills in the area of fluorescence spectroscopy of complex matrices;
      • Proven knowledge and work experience with chemometrics such as PARAFAC;
      • Have no fear of building and assembling your own spectrometer!
      • Understanding how sensors are used in process monitoring and control;
      • Have good oral and written skills in English;
      • Exhibit interest to innovative and independent research;
      • Be a team player as you will conduct collaboration across the DHRTC partnership and other research laboratories.

      We offer
      DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

      Salary and terms of employment
      The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union.

      The position is offered for 2 years with a potential extension for yet another year depending on the evaluation of the research and application outcome.

      You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

      Further information
      Further information may be obtained from Prof. Simon Ivar Andersen,, (DHRTC).

      The project will be supervised by Professor (MSO) Simon Ivar Andersen, DHRTC and Associate Professor Åsmund Rinnan, KU-FOOD.

      You can read about the scientific basis for the centre’s activities here:

      Application procedure
      Please submit your online application no later than 5 August 2020 (23:59 local time).

      Apply at

      Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link “Apply online”, fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

      • Application (cover letter)
      • CV
      • Diploma (MSc/PhD)
      • List of publications

      Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

      All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.



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