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PhD Studentship: High-efficiency Automotive Micro-inverter

University College London - Mechanical Engineering

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: London
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: £16,777 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 20th August 2019
Closes: 30th September 2019
Reference: 1822214

Vacancy Information

This 3 year PhD Studentship is to develop a bidirectional Silicon-Carbide (SiC) traction inverter aiming to reduce cost, inverter losses (>99% efficiency) and weight while maintaining high reliability.

Studentship Description

All electric and hybrid powered vehicles need an inverter to convert the DC stored in the batteries to AC for use in the motors that drive the wheels. A compact inverter with high current density will have a major impact in zero-emission vehicles. Manufacturers want separate motors in each wheel to reduce weight and improve performance. Combining the inverter and energy recovery system in the same unit will improve performance but this is only possible if these systems are small and efficient.

This multidisciplinary research will involve the development of a unique bidirectional inverter architecture and soft switching techniques. Numerical modelling and advanced control techniques will be utilised to implement a modular reconfigurable inverter topology. Successful candidates will join an interdisciplinary team with substantial industrial engagement and academic collaborations, as such they will be able to continue their career in this exciting field delivering future enabling technologies for the automotive industry.

Person Specification

Applicant should have, or expect to achieve, a master’s degree in engineering, computer science, or a closely-related discipline, awarded with first-class or upper second-class (2:1) honours (or equivalent). The successful candidate should have strong self-motivation and dedicated passion for research, in addition to the willingness for team-working and the ability to deliver research outcomes to meet deadlines. The Successful candidate requires having and developing background knowledge in the following areas:

  • Power electronics and electromagnetics
  • Control and optimisation techniques
  • Finite element analysis and programming
  • Practical skills with building and testing electronic circuits


This position is open to home and overseas candidates.

Eligible applicants should first contact Dr Mehdi Baghdadi ( Please enclose a cover letter (including the names and contact details of two referees), one-page research statement and two pages CV. The supervisory team will arrange interviews for short-listed candidates. After interview, the successful candidate will be required to formally apply online via the UCL website. Regrettably, we are only able to contact candidates who are successful at the shortlisting stage.

Thank you for your interest in this position.

The shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview at UCL. Remote interviews (e.g. via skype) are possible if necessary.

Contact name

Mehdi Baghdadi

Contact details

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