Research Associate in Modelling and Optimisation of Energy Systems in Developing Nations

Heriot-Watt University - Institute of Sensors, Signals & Systems - The School of Engineering and Physical Sciences

Heriot-Watt is seeking a graduate with a strong interest in energy systems, data analysis and modelling to work on an exciting new project that looks at the challenges faced by energy networks in India. The Community-scale Energy Demand Reduction in India (CEDRI) project aims to develop strategies and guidance demand reduction/management to ensure future-resilient provision of electricity to Indian communities.

CEDRI is a collaboration between Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, UK with several partners in India, including the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, IIT Bombay and the Tiruchirappalli National Institute of Technology. The project team is highly interdisciplinary, bringing together expertise ranging from sustainably buildings, power systems, computer science, statistics and mathematical modelling to social science.

This post is geared towards modelling and characterising challenges faced by local energy grids, such as community microgrids. Such systems may have several “bottlenecks” and be vulnerable to power quality issues. These issues may get aggravated further when variable renewable energy sources get added to the system (where power is fed into the grid locally), as well as by new demand challenges from developing communities.

The work involves carrying out electrical modelling of community microgrids, and understanding how distributed generation and rapidly evolving demand can lead to potential frequency and voltage excursions and affect system stability. Moreover, new techniques will be studied to allow microgrids to detect, mitigate and cope with such challenges. The associate will work closely with our partners at IIT Delhi to deliver on these objectives.

Some of the key duties of the RA will include: overviewing of current problems facing local and national-scale electricity grids in India, with performance metrics proposed for defining power quality and reliability of existing networks; analysing network connectivity, voltage and load data from the project case study areas and developing models that can help identify networks most likely to be at risk.

Applicants should have a good MEng or MSc degree (with PhD strongly preferred) in either Energy Systems, Computer Science/AI or Electrical Engineering programme. Your original degree should have a strong computational modelling and/or data analysis component.

The post is available for 24 months.

Informal enquiries may be made to Dr Valentin Robu at or +44 (0)131 451 3438

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and ethnic minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts at Heriot-Watt.

For application details and further information please go to:

Closing date: 7 Jan 2018 23:00 (UK time)

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