School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health at KTH

Project description

Third-cycle subject: Chemical engineering

The project will contribute to new and more efficient fuel cells and fuel cell systems for the transport sector. Vehicles powered by fuel cells convert hydrogen completely emission-free except for the water produced. With more efficient fuel cells, emission-free operation is enabled even for vehicles and areas of use where battery operation is not a suitable technical solution, e.g., for heavy-duty vehicles.

In the project, proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) with an operating temperature of up to 120 °C will be studied. This, for the fuel cell, higher than normal temperature has clear advantages, such as the possibility of more efficient cooling, higher catalyst activity and less sensitivity to impurities in the constituent gases. However, development of new cell components and the system is required, and the rate of aging and degradation mechanisms also increases with higher temperature. The project is a national collaboration between research groups at four different universities (KTH, Lund University, Chalmers, and Linköping University), as well as several other parties (Scania, AB Volvo, Alleima, Cell Impact, PowerCell, Intertek, Hydrogen Sweden).

The PhD student will be employed at the division of applied electrochemistry at KTH, with about 30 PhD students and seniors doing research on batteries, fuel cells and electrolytic processes in an international and creative environment. The work will be mainly experimental and includes electrochemical characterization of small fuel cells to study function and lifetime under different conditions. Read more about the department here.

Supervision: Professor Carina Lagergren is proposed to supervise the doctoral student. Decisions are made on admission

What we offer

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 should have a suitable background in chemical engineering, engineering physics, or similar.

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.
  • Experience in electrochemistry is a merit.

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. In the case of studies that are to be completed with a licentiate degree, the total period of employment may not be longer than what corresponds to full-time doctoral education for two years.

Union representatives

You will find contact information for union representatives on KTH's website.

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

You will find contact information for doctoral section on the section's website.

To apply for the position

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 the following elements:

  • 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.

The position may include security-sensitive activities. To become authorized, you therefore need to pass a possible security check.

We firmly decline all contact with staffing and 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 Så snart som möjligt eller enligt överenskommelse
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 C-2024-0566
  • Carina Lagergren,
Published 04.Apr.2024
Last application date 25.Apr.2024 11:59 PM CEST

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