Doctoral candidate in Naval Architecture

Estonia (EE)
The salary is according to the salary system of Tallinn University of Technology.
Apr 27, 2020
Jun 27, 2020
Contract Type
Full Time
Job Type
PhD / Doctoral

Doctoral candidate in Naval Architecture

PhD Topic: Application of machine learning in ship structural design


Current efforts in the naval architecture are focused on reducing the overall weight to develop a lighter, fuel-efficient and eco-friendly structural solution that reduce carbon emission. In parallel, societal requirements to structures have not changed – structures need to be safe, reliable as well as user-friendly in different operating conditions. When novel structures are developed, their compliance with existing design rules must be checked and their performance assessed to show the benefits compared with existing structures. Currently, computational tools are used for performance evaluation of structures. However, this can be a time inefficient and tedious task when a non-linear dynamic response must be assessed in the design of a complex structure where hundreds of alternatives need to be considered in the search for the optimum. Therefore, the position is related to the application of machine learning in structural response modelling.

Machine learning tools (e.g., the artificial neural networks ANN) have made tremendous improvements in the last decade. Their accuracy is very high, which means that they can be used as surrogate models for optimization. For instance, the crashworthiness of complex vehicles can be optimized without the use of supercomputers, but by using machine learning models in optimization. This PhD will investigate the numerical aspects of using machine learning in the context of finite element modelling of ship structures as well as the experimental approaches that are tailored towards ANN framework.

Requirements & Qualifications:

The call is open for candidates with a wide range of backgrounds inside and outside of Estonia. Most importantly, a high level of interest and motivation towards, and deep understanding of, solid and computational mechanics is required. A suitable background may come from mechanical/material engineering, marine engineering, civil engineering, engineering physics, applied or computational mechanics, or related disciplines. Prior experience on working with FE codes LS-DYNA or ABAQUS is a significant advantage and skills with programming tools Matlab, Python or Fortran is considered as a plus as these will be used during the work. The candidate should prove his/her capabilities in writing the technical report and scientific papers in high-quality journals. Experience in collaborative research/publication with the existing TalTech staff is also a plus. The applicant for the position must have a Master’s degree and must fulfil the requirements for doctoral students at the Tallinn University of Technology.

During the assessment, emphasis will be put on your potential for research, motivation and personal suitability for the position.

Closing Date and Start Date:

Deadline for this application is 03 July 2020. 


The position is at the Etonian Maritime Academy of Tallinn University of Technology and may include some work as a teaching assistant in our courses. The expected duration of doctoral studies is four years, but a contract is first made for one year, and the extension is subject to the advance of studies and research. The salary is according to the salary system of Tallinn University of Technology.


How to apply for a doctoral candidate position

The application material includes:

1.Motivation letter (maximum one A4 page, important: provide clear, but honest, evidence of your skills related to the job description and requirements above)

2.CV and other proof of scientific activity (publications, conference papers etc.)

3. A certified copy of the master´s degree certificate and an official transcript of records, and their translations, if the originals are not in English. In the first stage, the unofficial documents may also be accepted.

4.An English abstract or summary the MSc thesis.

5. Introducing two referees who can be contacted, directly.

6.Proof of proficiency in English

All material should be submitted in English.

Applications with attachments (in pdf-format) are to be sent to no later than 03 July 2020. The position will be fulfilled as soon as a suitable candidate is found.

Further information

  • Job locations Kuressaare & Tallinn. 
  • For additional information, please contact Assistant Professor Mihkel Kõrgesaar (email:

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