School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at KTH

Project description

The provision of plasma-facing components (PFCs) with sufficient lifetime is one of the major technological obstacles to be overcome in developing fusion reactors. Recently, the damage of PFCs due to interaction with runaway electrons (RE) has become a highly critical issue in evaluations of disruption consequences. The MeV RE fluxes lead to volumetric heating, thus, temperature profiles might have a maximum deep in the bulk, leading to large thermal stress build-up and even explosive detachment of material. ITER and DEMO currently seek for the validation of relevant numerical models and tools against existing experimental evidence in order to gain confidence in their applications to predictive reactor modelling.

The PhD project will focus on the development of modelling tools for simulations of RE-induced PFC damage and their validation against data from EUROfusion Consortium, and DIII-D (USA),, experiments. The validated models will be employed for predictive modelling of specific ITER & DEMO scenarios following input from the ITER Organization and the DEMO Central team. The simulations of MeV RE energy deposition in PFCs will be performed with the GEANT4 Monte Carlo simulation toolkit, These results will serve as input to melt motion modelling by the in-house MEMENTO code (, which has emerged as the premier tool for the modelling of PFC thermal response and macroscopic melt motion, and has been benchmarked with multiple dedicated EUROfusion experiments.

Third-cycle subject: Electrical Engineering 

Supervision: Prof. Svetlana Ratynskaia

What we offer

  • A workplace with many employee benefits and monthly salary according to KTH’s Doctoral student salary agreement.
  • A postgraduate education at an institution that is active and supportive in matters pertaining to working conditions, gender equality and diversity as well as study environment.
  • Help to relocate and be settled in Sweden and at KTH.
  • Expertise in the theory and modelling of electron transport into matter and plasma-surface interactions
  • Access to state-of-the-art experimental data from the largest tokamaks worldwide.
  • Close collaboration with the Experiments & Plasma Operation Section of the ITER Organization and DEMO Central team.

Admission requirements

To be admitted to postgraduate education (Chapter 7, 39 § Swedish Higher Education Ordinance), the applicant must have basic eligibility in accordance with either of the following:

  • passed a second cycle degree (for example a master's degree), or
  • completed course requirements of at least 240 higher education credits, of which at least 60 second-cycle higher education credits, or
  • acquired, in some other way within or outside the country, substantially equivalent knowledge

The candidate must have good programming skills in languages such as Fortran, Python, or C/C++.

In addition to the above, there is also a mandatory requirement for English equivalent to English B/6, read more here


In order to succeed as a doctoral student at KTH you need to be goal oriented and persevering in your work. During the selection process, candidates will be assessed upon their ability to:

  • independently pursue his or her work
  • collaborate with others,
  • have a professional approach and
  • analyse and work with complex issues. 

Following skills will be considered as meritorious: Familiarity with the modelling of electron transport into matter with Monte Carlo techniques (i.e. GEANT4, PENELOPE, FLUKA etc) and familiarity with basic computational fluid dynamics techniques.

After the qualification requirements, great emphasis will be placed on personal competency. 

Target degree: Doctoral degree

Information regarding admission and employment

Only those admitted to postgraduate education may be employed as a doctoral student. The total length of employment may not be longer than what corresponds to full-time doctoral education in four years ' time. An employed doctoral student can, to a limited extent (maximum 20%), perform certain tasks within their role, e.g. training and administration. A new position as a doctoral student is for a maximum of one year, and then the employment may be renewed for a maximum of two years at a time.

Union representatives

Contact information KTH's website.

Doctoral section (Students’ union on KTH Royal Institute of Technology)

Contact information section's website.


Apply for the position and admission through KTH's recruitment system. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the advertisement.

Applications must be received at the last closing date at midnight, CET/CEST (Central European Time/Central European Summer Time).

Applications must include:

  • CV including your relevant professional experience and knowledge.
  • Application letter with a brief description of why you want to pursue research studies, about what your academic interests are and how they relate to your previous studies and future goals. (Maximum 2 pages long)
  • Copies of diplomas and grades from previous university studies and certificates of fulfilled language requirements (see above). Translations into English or Swedish if the original document is not issued in one of these languages.Copies of originals must be certified.
  • Representative publications or technical reports. For longer documents, please provide a summary (abstract) and a web link to the full text.

Other information

Striving towards gender equality, diversity and equal conditions is both a question of quality for KTH and a given part of our values.

For information about processing of personal data in the recruitment process please read here.

We firmly decline all contact with staffing, recruitment agencies and job ad salespersons.

Disclaimer: In case of discrepancy between the Swedish original and the English translation of the job announcement, the Swedish version takes precedence.



Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
First day of employment According to agreement
Salary Monthly salary according to KTH's doctoral student salary agreement
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Stockholm
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number J-2023-0143
  • Prof Svetlana Ratynskaia,
  • Lisa Olsson HR Officer,
Published 09.Feb.2023
Last application date 30.Mar.2023 11:59 PM CEST

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