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    • Ås
  • Full time
  • Recruitment


  • Electrical engineering
  • Physics


  • Phd

Apply by: 2024-05-31

PhD position within second life prospect of degraded Lithium-Ion batteries

Published 2024-04-15

About the position

A PhD position in second life prospect of degraded Lithium-ion batteries is available at the Department of Physics at the Faculty of Science and Technology.

The PhD position is for a period of 3 years.

Desired start date: 1st November 2024

The widespread accumulation of degraded Lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles (EVs) and renewable energy systems presents profound economic and environmental implications for society. Thus, recycling deteriorated batteries is crucial to mitigate financial costs, valuable material depletion, and ecological impacts. However, conventional battery recycling presents challenges due to its energy-intensive and complex nature. Therefore, continuous research and innovation in battery recycling are essential. An alternative approach is to explore second-life opportunities for degraded batteries in other applications. This strategy might have the potential to extend the useful life of degraded batteries significantly. For instance, degraded EV batteries could find a second life in stationary energy storage systems before the final recycling stage.

The main scope of the research project is given below.

  • Conduct research on battery degradation and develop methodologies for estimating remaining useful life.
  • Categorize degraded batteries based on historical stresses (thermal and electrical) and predict their performance for second-life applications.
  • Plan and execute experiments on categorized degraded batteries to identify suitable second-life applications, considering both predicted performances and the requirements of secondary applications.
  • Compare and analyze the predictions of secondary life with experimental results to validate the effectiveness of the proposed methodologies and identify areas for improvement.

Depending on the successful candidate’s interdisciplinary background in prognostics and health management, power electronics and machine learning, the above areas of interest will be further adjusted in a relevant and feasible research plan.

The person appointed will be affiliated with the University’s organized research training. The academic work is to result in a doctoral thesis that will be defended at the University with a view to obtaining the degree of PhD.

The successful candidate is expected to join the existing research milieu or network and contribute to its development. Read more about the doctoral degree.

Main tasks

Description of tasks or PhD project:

This research project aims to contribute to the sustainable utilization of Lithium-ion batteries, reducing waste and maximizing resource efficiency in the transition towards cleaner energy systems.

  • Independent research on the second-life potential of degraded Lithium-ion batteries in appropriate applications. Possibilities may include integrating degraded batteries with non-degraded ones, employing suitable power electronics, and developing novel battery management algorithms.
  • Plan and execute lab experiments for second-life potential of degraded Lithium-ion batteries.
  • Conduct high-quality scientific research and publish results in reputable research journals and conferences.
  • If required, collaborate with internal and external partners for joint research activities.

The successful candidate is expected to enter a plan for the progress of the work towards a PhD degree during the first months of the appointment, with a view to completing a doctorate within the PhD scholarship period.

Studenter i parken


Required qualifications

  • A Master's degree or equivalent in Electrical Engineering or Physics or related. Foreign degrees must correspond with the admission criteria for the PhD program. Candidates submitting MSs thesis within 31. Mai 2024 may be considered.
  • Proficiency in both written and oral English in correspondence with the admission criteria for the PhD program.
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position.

The following experiences and skills will be emphasized:

  • Knowledge, experience and skills on Lithium-ion battery technologies, power electronics, prognostic & health management of renewable energy systems
  • Strong skills in data analytics, statistics and/or machine learning techniques.  
  • Skills in scientific writing
  • The applicant's estimated academic and personal ability to complete the project within the time frame.
  • Applicants who have recently graduated with excellent results may be given preference.

Personal qualities:

  • Good collaboration skills and an ability to join interdisciplinary academic communities.
  • Ability to work independently and conduct lab experiments.
  • Strong communication skills

The successful applicant must meet the conditions defined for admission to a PhD programme at NMBU. For more detailed information on the admission criteria please see the PhD Regulations and the relevant PhD programme description.

Remuneration and further information

We offer:

  • Salary 532200 NOK per annum. For exceptionally well qualified candidates a higher salary may be considered.  
  • Government pay scale position code 1017 PhD Research Fellow.

Formal regulations

The appointment is to be made in accordance with Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, Phd candidate, research assistant and specialist candidate and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) at the Norwegian University of Life Science (NMBU).

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NMBU.

For further information, please contact

Associate Professor Jagath Sri Lal Senanayaka (main supervisor) E-mail: jagath.sri.lal.senanayaka@nmbu.no  (do not use this e-mail for application, it is only for questions);

Associate Professor Heidi S. Nygård (co-supervisor) E-mail: heidi.nygard@nmbu.no (do not use this e-mail for application, it is only for questions)

Information for PhD applicants and general Information to applicants



To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply for this job' button above. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Application deadline: 31.05.2024

Your CV must also be entered in JobbNorge's CV form and not only included as an attachment. This is to be able to comply with the regulations of §15 of the Public Administration Act.

In the application, the candidate must confirm that information and documentation (in the form of attachments) submitted via the job application can also be used by NMBU in a possible admission process.

Applicants invited for an interview are expected to present original diplomas and certificates.

Please note that all documents should be in English or a Scandinavian language.

The following documents must be attached to the application:

  • Motivation letter (maximum 1 page)
  • Complete CV
  • Certified copies of academic diplomas and certificates. (i.e. Diploma, transcript. Diploma supplement for both bachelor and master). Diplomas, transcripts and diploma supplements that are not in Norwegian or English must be uploaded in the original language. An English translation of these documents must also be attached.
  • Applicants from universities outside Norway are kindly requested to send a diploma supplement, or a similar document, which describes in detail the study program and grading system.
  • Documentation of proficiency in written and oral English in accordance with NMBU PhD regulation section 5-2 (3)
  • Names and contact details for two references
  • Additional relevant documentation of professional knowledge (for example, list of scientific works). If it is difficult to judge the applicant’s contribution for publications with multiple authors, a short description of the applicant’s contribution must be included.

About The Faculty of Science and Technology

The Faculty of Science and Technology (REALTEK) develops research-based knowledge and educates civil engineers and lecturers needed to reach the UN's sustainability goals. We have approximately 150 employees, 70 PhD students and soon 1500 students. The education and research at REALTEK cover a broad spectrum of disciplines.

This includes data science, mechanics and process engineering, robotics, construction and architecture, industrial economics, environmental physics and renewable energy, geomatics, water and environmental engineering, applied mathematics as well as secondary school teacher education in natural sciences and use of natural resources such as in agriculture, forestry and aquaculture. The workplace is in Ås, 30 km from Oslo.

What is it really like to work at the Faculty of Science and Technology (REALTEK) at NMBU?

 - Guided tour of the Faculty of Science and Technology on Vimeo

REALTEK bygning

The Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)

NMBU will contribute to securing the future of life through outstanding research, education, communication and innovation. We have the country's most satisfied university students, who receive research-based education in a unique student environment. Our graduates gain a high level of competence in interdisciplinary collaboration and are popular in the labor market. NMBU has internationally leading research environments in several subjects. Together with our partners in society and business, we contribute to solving some of the biggest societal challenges of our time.

We focus on innovation, communication and entrepreneurship because we believe these challenges are best solved with joint efforts. We believe that a good working environment is characterized by diversity.If necessary, workplace adaptations will be made for persons with disabilities. More information about NMBU is available at www.nmbu.no/en