Research Professor of Modelling of Energy Systems and Complex Flow Phenomena Through CFD Simulation
University of Antwerp

Research Professor in The Modelling of Energy Systems and Complex Flow Phenomena Through CFD Simulation

Department : Electromechanics
Regime : Full-time

As part of its dynamic research policy, and supported by the possibilities offered by the Flemish Government through the resources of the University Research Fund (Dutch: Bijzonder Onderzoeksfonds, BOF), the research group Energy and Materials in Infrastructure and Buildings and the Department of Electromechanical Engineering of the Faculty of Applied Engineering have the following full-time vacancy:

junior research professor in the modelling of energy systems and complex flow phenomena through CFD simulation (tenure track ZAPBOF)


As a member of the senior academic staff (Dutch: Zelfstandig Academisch Personeel, ZAP), you will contribute to the University of Antwerp’s three core tasks: research, services and education. Your role may also include organisational and managerial aspects. As a research professor, your role will consist primarily of academic research with some limited involvement in the educational programmes for a maximum of 10 years.

The research group EMIB (Energy and Materials in Infrastructure and Buildings) of the Faculty of Applied Engineering is a strong multi-disciplinary team which focuses on two specific domains: 1. material use and road infrastructure (RERS: road engineering research section) and 2. energy systems in the built environment (BiRD: Buildings, Installations: Retrofit and Design).

The latter group is known for its expertise on comfort installations and thermal energy grids in the built environment. Together with its large industrial network, including amongst others own spin-offs (HySopt) and larger international players (Autodesk, Beckhoff, BDR Thermea, Aalberts, …), it is able to translate its research towards valorisation.

Besides experimental work with respect to prototype testing of HVAC-components in the lab, the group focuses on modelling and design optimization of energy systems in buildings, in which a multidisciplinary approach is deployed:

  • Thermal and hydraulic system modelling
  • Building physics, user behaviour and comfort modelling
  • Socio-economic modelling and life-cycle assessment


  • You expand high-quality scientific research in the modelling of energy systems and complex flow phenomena through CFD-simulation, with a specific interest in at least one of the following areas:You initiate new lines of research and coordinate the progress of scientific research projects. You also participate in ongoing research programmes.
    • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning
    • Complex flow phenomena in ducts and pipes (two-phase flow, slug flow, pollution and gas dispersion…)
    • Water, steam and/or gas distribution networks
    • Thermo-acoustic comfort
    • Your CFD-expertise is highly complementary and a clear added value to the present research activities in the research group. As such, you will have the opportunity to develop your own research, while profiting from both the support of the current team members and the collaboration with the other senior academic staff members in the research group, the faculty and the university at large.
  • You acquire and manage national and international research funding.
  • You publish in international journals and specialist literature.
  • You develop an international scientific network.
  • You supervise PhD students and postdoctoral researchers.


  • You play a role in the provision of both academic services and service to society, within the institution and externally. You participate in student recruitment, boards and committees, popular science communication, and so on.


  • You provide high-quality education.
  • Your limited teaching role evolves along with the study programmes. You will supervise bachelor’s and master’s theses in your domain. In addition, your teaching assignment may in time include a course such as 4-Applied Fluid Mechanics (2nd year of the bachelor’s programme, 3 ECTS).
  • You play a role in developing activating, student-centred and competence-driven programme components and study programmes.

Organisation and leadership

  • You accept coordinating responsibilities in the core tasks of research, services and/or education and you contribute to policy.
  • Your leadership style is motivating and coaching. You are attentive to your employees’ growth and development processes.


  • You hold a PhD in Engineering, Physics or Chemistry.
  • You can demonstrate a minimum of two years of postdoctoral experience (when you start work, at the latest).
  • You have an international academic portfolio and you conduct high-quality academic research.
  • Your research qualities are in line with the faculty and university research policies.
  • Your teaching competences are in line with the University of Antwerp’s educational vision. You are motivated to develop your teaching skills further through the professionalisation opportunities available.
  • If you do not master Dutch, the administrative language of the university, you should be willing to obtain a CEFR B2 level of proficiency in Dutch within five years after your appointment. As soon as you take on teaching duties as a course unit coordinator, you should be able to demonstrate a CEFR C1 level of proficiency in the language of instruction. The University of Antwerp supports international staff members on an integration trajectory and offers tailor-made language coaching in compliance with Flanders’ statutory language regulations
  • You demonstrate leadership potential and organisational skills.
  • You act with attention to quality, integrity, creativity and cooperation.

 What we offer

  • We offer a full-time ZAPBOF appointment as a tenure track lecturer for a period of five years. Following a favourable evaluation, this period is followed by permanent appointment (tenure) as a senior lecturer.
  • In the event of a positive evaluation after the first five-year period, you may continue in your role as a research professor with limited teaching responsibilities for a maximum of ten years in total, allowing you to further strengthen your research portfolio. This tenure track ZAPBOF period is then followed by a standard position as a member of the senior academic staff with a mixture of teaching, research and service responsibilities.
  • Your gross monthly salary is calculated according to the pay scales for senior academic staff.            
  • We offer an attractive starter package consisting of a four-year PhD project and €50 000 of consumables;      
  • The planned start date is 1 October 2021 or as soon as possible after that date.
  • You will do most of your work at Campus Groenenborger in a dynamic and stimulating working environment.
  • Find out more about working at the University of Antwerp here and discover all the other benefits.

Want to apply?

  • You can apply for this vacancy through the University of Antwerp’s online job application platform up to and including January 18, 2021 (by Brussels midnight time). Click on 'apply', complete the online application form and don’t forget to include the following documents: (1) your motivation letter, (2) the completed job application appendix for ZAP, (3) your academic CV, (4) a detailed research plan for the next five years (approx. 5 000 words, including a concise description (1 page) of the intended PhD research (see starter package), (5) a report on your previous scientific research activities (maximum 5 000 words), (6) two abstracts on the scientific content of the research plan (one scientific abstract and one abstract in layman’s terms of maximum 500 words or 4 000 characters each). All documents must be submitted in English.
  • The selection committee will review all of the applications as soon as possible after the application deadline. As soon as a decision has been made, we will inform you about the next steps in the selection procedure.
  • If you have any questions about the online application form, please check the frequently asked questions or send an email to If you have any questions about the job itself, please contact prof. dr. Ivan Verhaert, spokesperson for EMIB, tel. +32 (0)3 265 18 86; If you have any questions about the typical appointment framework for this research role, please contact the (TT)ZAPBOF officer in the Department of Research Affairs & Innovation, Marianne De Voecht (0032 3 265 30 29).

The University of Antwerp received the European Commission’s HR Excellence in Research Award for its HR policy. We are a sustainable, family-friendly organisation which invests in its employees’ growth. We encourage diversity and attach great importance to an inclusive working environment and equal opportunities, regardless of gender identity, disability, race, ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation or age. We encourage people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse characteristics to apply.


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