Monday, December 8, 2008

PhD project 2009/2010 in coupled vibrations in hydro power rotors

PhD-project in coupled vibrations in hydro power rotors

With new operating conditions and aging machines in the hydro power industry, rotor dynamic research in this area is becoming more important. The need for reliable operations of the hydro power machines is of worldwide importance, and to this end the development of better simulation techniques and methods are necessary. When failures do occur, it is important that dynamical questions regarding the cause of the failures can be identified and answered.

As such, there is no other international group today that continuously works with rotor dynamics in hydro power units. Therefore it is expected that our research will have an important impact even at the international level. At LTU and Vattenfall VRD, we have been doing research in rotor dynamics since 2001, leading to several research projects and new findings that have been published in international journals. There are many crucial rotor dynamic issues in hydro power applications.

Some examples are rotor interaction with bearings, fluid-rotor structure interaction and electromagnetic fields. We are working in all areas through collaborations within the Swedish hydropower centre (SVC). SVC was initiated 2006 and has as aim to develop competence within the hydro power technology sector. An outcome of the several workshops is the decision by the SVC to initiate a new research project in coupled vibrations in hydro power rotors. Coupled vibrations have
been studied extensively in rotor dynamics and it has been found that coupling can result in unexpected vibrations, and in some cases failure due to self excited motions or parametric excitations. The target in the project is to determine when such problems can occur and also find out the causes of the problems. Thus, we are now searching for a new PhD student in Solid Mechanics to work on these issues


We work with both analytical and numerical methods to study the rotor dynamics. For numerical simulations, we usually use Matlab or own programs, but we do also have access to several other commercial programs should they be required . The new models should be evaluated either in test rigs ( LTU or Vattenfall research & development) or in real hydro power stations. Since several problems are of nonlinear nature, it becomes essential to use nonlinear methods in the work.

Suitable background

The requirement for the appointment is a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering or Applied Physics directed towards mechanics. A strong analytical interest is more than desirable for the project to run smoothly. It is traditionally difficult to attract females to the field of mechanics. Therefore we are actively working for an environment which attracts both females and males

Your work is to perform supervised research, read appropriate courses and participate in departmental activities such as teaching.

For more information about SVC see and about the project

Contact person: Prof. Jan-Olov Aidanpää, tel: 070-2592531, email:


Application marked with Ref no with merits should be sent to Registrator, Luleå tekniska universitet, 971 87 Luleå or

Ref no: 2951-08

Last date for application is: 2008-12-12