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  Spacecraft Trajectory Optimisation


   Department of Physics

   Applications accepted all year round  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

The University of Auckland is developing a research programme in low delta-v spacecraft trajectory optimisation. We are looking for a PhD candidate to continue work in this area and develop our existing algorithms.

The ideal candidate will have skills or experience in:

* Spacecraft trajectory design, nonlinear dynamics, three-body dynamics,

* Applied mathematics, scientific computing, optimal control theory, optimization

* Space mission design.

If you are interested in this opportunity, please follow these guidelines:

* Check your eligibility to take a PhD at The University of Auckland at https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/study/applications-and-admissions/entry-requirements/postgraduate-entry-requirements/doctoral-entry-requirements.html

* Please give an outline (500 words) of your intended topic and areas of interest for doctoral study. When you detail your research interest, please ensure you succinctly record:

---- The area of research which particularly interests you.

---- Why you have chosen this area.

---- What you hope to achieve during your studies at the University of Auckland.

---- How your proposed research relates to current and recent research in this area at the University of Auckland. See http://astrophysics-and-astronomy.blogs.auckland.ac.nz/spacecraft-trajectory-and-propulsion-research/ and our publications:

Darcey R. Graham, Jacob A. Englander, Nicholas J. Rattenbury, and John E. Cater, Low-Thrust Trajectory Design from Lunar Rideshare to Venus Capture , Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 2022 59:6, 2070-2083  

Graham, D. R., Englander, J. A., Rattenbury, N. J., & Cater, J. E. (2020, August). Low-Thrust Transfer to Interplanetary Trajectories from Lunar Trajectories with Rideshare. In AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialist Conference.  

* Email your statement, CV and academic record (including grades and subjects) to the contacts for this position.

Computer Science (8) Mathematics (25) Physics (29)

Funding Notes

Excellent candidates for PhD research at The University of Auckland can compete for a University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship. These are competitive scholarships and are not restricted against nationality. It is important to note that these are hard to get -- the cut-off is based on a grade-point equivalent computed from your academic record. I do not have the details of how this computation is made, but as a general rule, only GPEs in excess of 7.0 are considered competitive. You can get an informal estimate of your GPE here: View Website

Register your interest for this project


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