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PhD position in urban water engineering- transport of solids, emerging contaminants and microorganism in urban drainage systems

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  • Full or part time
    Prof M Viklander
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About This PhD Project

Project Description

Ref 2335-2018

The Urban Water Research Group at the Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering at Luleå University of Technology seeks a driven and committed PhD student with focus on Characterization and management of stormwater sediments.

Subject Description

Research within Urban Water Engineering at LTU covers the entire urban water system (stormwater management, water and wastewater supply) including collection, transport and treatment, as well as organisation and planning. The research aims to encourage a clean environment and the wise use of resources, while preserving the public’s health and safety. The group’s overall aim is to contribute to the development of sustainable urban water systems.

The Urban Water Research Group

The Urban Water Research Group has a strong position in research and education within the area of urban water systems, mainly regarding stormwater, wastewater and sewer systems. Being a part of the Urban Water Research Group implies working in an international and creative environment. The group consists of a number of senior researchers, international adjunct and guest professors and 15 doctoral candidates. The group has an extensive international collaboration network.

Project Description

Contaminants released in wet weather from diffuse sources are transported hydraulically in urban drainage in various modes, depending on their fractionation between liquid and solid phases. Specifically, contaminants may be transported in the form of dissolved or suspended load, or bedload. The hydraulic transport is not continuous, because the transport capacity varies along the flow path depending on flow characteristics. Contaminants transported in the particulate phase may deposit in drainage system sections with low velocities or storage, or during low-flow phase of runoff. The settling of particulates will be reflected in an improved quality of stormwater, but such improvements may be just temporary, as rising flows will results in solids scouring and wash out from sewers. On the other hand, the dissolved phase transport is unimpeded by such conditions, but would be subject to potential dilution by less contaminated stormwater. Besides the hydraulics and mixing aspects, the transport is also influenced by the substance chemodynamics, determining its water/sediment partitioning. Thus, the modelling of contaminant transport requires considerations of transport modes and the dynamic tendencies of contaminants to follow certain transport modes. The knowledge of transport processes will then contribute to characterizations of stormwater flows into treatment facilities and their treatability. In summary, the successful candidate for this position will focus on transport of emerging contaminants from sources to the treatment facilities.

The PhD position is part of DRIZZLE - Centre for Stormwater Management a Research Centre of Excellence. In DRIZZLE, researchers at Luleå University of Technology, companies, and municipalities will develop pioneering, research-based stormwater management knowledge and solutions: to minimize pollution loads discharged into receiving waters; to minimize the risk for flooding in urban areas; and to exploit the beneficial opportunities that stormwater runoff can offer. DRIZZLE consists of 11 parties, i.e. Aarsleff Rörteknik AB, Stormwater&Sewers, Järven Ecotech AB, Luleå Municipality, Luleå University of Technology (project manager), NCC Infrastructure, Rent Dagvatten AB, Stockholm City, Stockholm Water, Tyréns and StormTac AB.


The PhD candidate is expected to independently plan and carry out laboratory and field work. Further tasks include the writing of scientific papers and the doctoral thesis as well as the participation in Swedish and international conferences. The PhD candidate is supported by two supervisors during the research studies. Third-cycle education also includes courses that the PhD candidate must attend. The PhD studies are 4 years, fulltime. Administration and/or lecturing on basic and advanced level of up to one year may be added to this time.


The applicant shall hold a second-cycle degree (MSc, fully completed course requirements of at least 240 ETCS of which at least 60 ETCS at an advanced level, or equivalent) in environmental/civil engineering or comparable. English language skills are required to facilitate the candidate’s presentation of research outcomes at international conferences and in scientific journals. Further skills needed are the ability to work independently and take own initiatives as well as independently penetrate new research areas. The candidate may also have to work as a member of a larger research team comprising external partners and PhD students. Experience and/or education in the field of sanitary/urban water engineering, (geo-) chemistry and hydrological modelling, lab/field work and/or statistical data analysis as well as Swedish language skills will be beneficial. It is preferable if you hold a driver license to facilitate field work.

The applicant should be able provide two referees on request.

For further information about a specific subject see; General curricula for the Board of the faculty of science and technology:


For further information, please contact: Professor Maria Viklander, +46 70 330 14 86, [Email Address Removed]

Union representatives: SACO-S Christer Gardelli, +46 (0)920-49 1809 [Email Address Removed] and OFR-S Lars Frisk, +46 (0)920-49 1792 [Email Address Removed]

Luleå University of Technology is actively working on equality and diversity that contributes to a creative study- and work environment. The University's core values are based on respect, trust, openness and responsibility.

In case of different interpretations of the English and Swedish versions of this announcement, the Swedish version takes precedence.

Salary: monthly salary according to LTU salary agreement for PhD candidates.

Working hours: Fulltime (normally during days).

Duration of employment: Time limited employment, regulated by the Swedish Higher Education Act (max 5 years with max 20 % department duties).


You apply for this position by clicking on the link below. Your application shall include a motivation letter, CV and copies of diplomas from university. Mark your application with ref number below.

Reference number: 2335-2018
Deadline for application: 2018-09-24

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