PhD studentship in Control of Uncertain Nonlinear Systems

Imperial College London - Department of Electrical Engineering

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship in Control of Uncertain Nonlinear Systems: a stochastic and set-valued approach. The work will be based within the Control and Power group in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering.  The student will be supervised by Dr Giordano Scarciotti. The studentship will start as soon as possible from October 2017.

Every model of a real system has some degree of uncertainty. A parameter of the model may be unknown, some dynamics may be unmodeled, or the model may be completely unknown. Uncertainty arises in, for example, power production (unpredictable renewable sources), power distribution (energy price/demand), control of aircrafts, and biological and chemical reactions.

The project will tackle the problem of modelling, analysis and control of uncertain systems with two complementary approaches: stochastic differential equations allow to model randomness; set-valued mappings allow simultaneous modelling of multiple behaviours. Note that instead of considering a robust control approach, the objective of the project is to describe and deal with uncertainty within these two frameworks in a comprehensive manner.

The ideal candidate should have a strong background in Control Engineering, Automation Engineering or Applied Mathematics. Strong knowledge of linear system theory, a basic understanding of nonlinear systems and some experience in using MATLAB is required. Any knowledge of advanced topics such as stochastic systems and hybrid systems would be beneficial, but are not required skills as these will be acquired during the PhD.

Applications are invited from candidates with (or who expect to gain) a first-class honours degree or an equivalent degree in Engineering, Mathematics or a related discipline (for more details, see studentship provides a (tax-free) bursary of £16,553 (Standard RCUK Bursary rate) per annum for up to 3.5 years to cover living expenses, together with the College tuition fees at the UK/EU rate for 3 years. Applications from Overseas will also be considered, but the difference in the Overseas and UK/EU rate will have to be met by the successful applicant. 

For a description of the Control and Power Research Group please visit our website at  

Informal enquiries and requests for additional information for this post can be made to Dr Giordano Scarciotti by email at

Applications will be assessed as received and all applicants should follow the standard College application procedure (indicating Dr Giordano Scarciotti as supervisor) (

Start Date: As soon as possible from October 2017.

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