Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET) at the University of Twente is seeking an enthusiastic PhD candidate

The Computational Design of Structural Materials (CDSM) group in the Department Mechanics of Solids, Surfaces & Systems (MS3) in the Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET) at the University of Twente is seeking an enthusiastic PhD candidate to join us for a full-time, fully funded, 4-year project on modelling of recycled fibre reinforced polymer composites.

The Challenge

Fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) composites are engineered materials, that are used nowadays in many structural applications, thanks to their excellent strength-to-weight and stiffness-to-weight ratios. Unfortunately, up till now, the ability to controllably recycle FRP composites is limited and, unlike conventional materials, such as e.g. steel, recycled structural components cannot be reused to perform a similar function due to unknown and potentially reduced performance. Moreover, high variability of microstructural geometrical and mechanical properties and, as a result, macroscopic mechanical characteristics, makes it difficult to predict the overall behaviour of such recycled composites.


This PhD project builds upon experimental knowledge, obtained in the Production Technology group at the University of Twente, on fibre reinforced polymer composites, and aims at developing a good understanding and predicting the behaviour of recycled fibre reinforced polymers via a comprehensive multi-scale modelling approach. This approach analyses and takes into account important information on the particular microstructural characteristics of the new recycled multi-phase composite, and brings this information to the higher (macroscopic) level of observation, where the analysis of overall mechanical characteristics, such as stiffness, strength is performed. The objective of this PhD project is to develop such a multi-scale model, while working in close collaboration with experimental colleagues to feed and validate the model.


  • You hold a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, Materials Engineering or equivalent.
  • You have theoretical and/or experimental skills in polymers or fiber reinforced polymer composites in the field of e.g. material characterization, analysis, or mechanical performance.
  • You have an experience with numerical modelling of the mechanical performance and experience with programming languages like Fortran or C, scripting languages like Python or numerical computing environments like Matlab, ABAQUS and ANSYS.
  • You are curious and highly motivated to do interdisciplinary collaborative scientific research with a clear industrial application.
  • You are a team player with good interpersonal skills.
  • You are fluent in English, both spoken and written. (We require a TOEFL > 90 or IELTS > 6.5 score). The latter is not necessary for native speakers of English or whose MSc program was in English.
  • You are able to start the position no later than 1 July 2022.


We offer a very challenging position in a dynamic and international environment with enthusiastic colleagues, excellent working conditions and a green and lively campus.

  • A full-time 4-year PhD position;
  • Excellent mentorship and a stimulating international research environment with excellent facilities;
  • A professional and personal development program within Graduate School Twente;
  • A starting salary of € 2.443 gross per month in the first year and a salary of € 3.122 in the fourth year gross per month;
  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%;
  • A solid pension scheme;
  • Minimum of 29 holidays per year in case of fulltime employment.


Female applicants are explicitly asked to apply for this position. This is part of the University of Twente’s strategy to increase the proportion of women among its faculty and to create a working environment that is diverse and inclusive and supportive of excellence in research and teaching.

You are welcome to contact Prof.dr.ir. Inna Gitman (i.m.gitman@utwente.nl) for any questions you might have.

Please submit your application before 10 March, 2022 by using the “Apply now” button and include the following documents:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Motivation (cover) letter with contact information of 2 references
  • Grades of the BSc and MSc courses
  • IELTS or TOEFL score (if applicable)

A game-based assessment will be also part of the selection procedure.


The Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET) engages in education and research of Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Industrial Design Engineering. We enable society and industry to innovate and create value using efficient, solid and sustainable technology. We are part of a ‘people-first’ university of technology, taking our place as an internationally leading center for smart production, processes and devices in five domains: Health Technology, Maintenance, Smart Regions, Smart Industry and Sustainable Resources. Our faculty is home to about 2,900 Bachelor’s and Master’s students, 550 employees and 150 PhD candidates. Our educational and research programmes are closely connected with UT research institutes Mesa+ Institute, TechMed Center and Digital Society Institute.


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