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Assistant Professor in Complex Systems at the Department of Applied Mathematics!/vacature/868023

Job description

We are looking for a highly talented research scientist with a passion for teaching whose focus is on the development, analysis and application of complex systems and networks, such as approximation or control for models described by large scale ordinary and/or partial differential equations. The successful candidate is expected to have strong affinity with mathematical analysis. In addition, he or she has the capability to develop collaboration between mathematics and the multi-disciplinary research context at the University of Twente is essential. These collaborations can be established through one of the research institutes, i.e., CTIT institute on ICT, MESA+ institute for Nanotechnology, or MIRA institute for biomedical technology and technical medicine. The candidate will actively participate in the research and teaching within the Department of Applied Mathematics and develop a profile by collaborating with colleagues at CTIT, MESA+ or MIRA.

It is important that a characteristic own research line within complex systems is built for which external funding, such as within the NWO Innovational Research Incentives Scheme (VENI/VIDI/VICI) and within the European Research Council can be acquired.

Your profile

We expect a strong ambition toward innovative research, illustrated by publications in international journals and by taking up the challenge in acquiring research grants, either via personal schemes or in collaboration with others. The candidate should have excellent communication skills, allowing efficient interaction with colleagues from other disciplines. Training in (Applied) Mathematics or equivalent is essential, with a strong focus on systems of ordinary differential equations or on partial differential equations. Furthermore, the candidate has obtained a PhD degree and gained international experience at a post graduate level.
Teaching is an important part of the activities of the department. The candidate will be involved in the teaching program of the Department of Applied Mathematics at the Bachelor and Master level, as well as the service teaching. The candidate is expected to transfer his/her specific expertise to the master program. To facilitate the professional development and quality of teaching, all lecturers are requested to obtain the University Teaching Qualification (UTQ) within two years of their first appointment.

Applications (including curriculum vitae, list of publications, research statement, and three names of potential references) can be submitted online ( before January 15, 2017 to the University of Twente, attn. Prof.dr. S.A. van Gils, chairman Department of Applied Mathematics. 
For more information, please contact Prof.dr. H.J. Zwart (phone +31 534893464, email or Prof.dr. A.A. Stoorvogel (phone +31 534892378, email

Our offer

We offer you a permanent position of assistant professor. Criteria for evaluation comprise a strong track record of publications, evaluation of teaching and a demonstrated ability to acquire research funding and to achieve an international network and reputation. After one year, there will be an assessment. If this assessment has a positive result the permanent position will be effected. A future promotion to an associate professorship will be considered on the basis of criteria derived from the Twente Tenure Track procedures.

The terms of employment are in accordance with the Dutch Collective Labor Agreement for Universities (CAO). Depending on relevant background and experience, the gross monthly salary on a full-time basis ranges from 3,427 € to 5,330 € gross per month. Employees are also entitled to a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3 %.

We offer excellent auxiliary terms of employment, such as professional and personal development programs; a secondary remuneration package; a dynamic environment with enthusiastic colleagues; an organization focusing on internationalization and a high degree of responsibility and independence.

The organization

The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which drives change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university in the Netherlands; divided over six faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. The University of Twente has a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out pioneering research.

The faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS) comprises three disciplines that shape Information and Communication Technology. ICT is more than communication. In almost every product we use mathematics, electronics and computer technology and ICT now contributes to all of societies' activities. The faculty works together intensively with industrial partners and researchers in the Netherlands and abroad and conducts extensive research for external commissioning parties and funders. The research which enjoys a high profile both at home and internationally, has been accommodated in the multidisciplinary research institutes MESA+, CTIT and MIRA.

Post-doc positions

Post Doctoral Position in Waterloo (Canada)

Location: University of Waterloo, Canada
Contact: Kirsten Morris

Post-doctoral position (Applied Mathematics) available in optimal sensor location for distributed parameter systems. The start date is flexible. In order to satisfy federal rules, applicants  must apply through the Applied Mathematics Department ad on MathJobs and also indicate in the cover letter that they want to work with Kirsten Morris.

More details (pdf)

Post Doctoral Position in Bilbao

Project: ERC-Advanced Grant DYCON Post-Doctoral position
Location: Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain
Contact: Enrique Zuazua



---------------------------------- Past ------------------------------------------------

Post Doctoral Position (University of Waterloo)

Location: Department of Applied Mathematics at the University of Waterloo, Canada.
Contact: Kirsten Morris (kmorris'at'
Topic: Optimal sensor location for distributed parameter systems.
Deadline for application: April 1

Candidates should have a  PhD in control of distributed parameter systems, with  either a  theoretical or numerical focus; and a publication record that includes a few papers in high quality journals and conferences, as well as excellent proficiency in written and spoken English. 

Interested candidates should apply through MathJobs before April 1,  to the post-doctoral fellowship position  in the Department of Applied Mathematics at the University of Waterloo.  Candidates must indicate in the cover letter that they wish to work with Kirsten Morris. There is more than one position available in the department.   The initial appointment will be for one year with the possibility of extension based on performance.

PhD proposals 

Stability and robust control of linear partial differential differential equations and infinite-dimensional systems

The Systems Theory Research Group at the Laboratory of Mathematics at Tampere University of Technology, Tampere, Finland, is recruiting a new PhD student, starting January 2017 (or as mutually agreed). The main research topics include stability and robust control of linear partial differential differential equations and infinite-dimensional systems, especially linear wave equations. The details of the research group can be found at

If you are interested, the details of the position and the online application system can be found at (the call is with the title “Doctoral Student/PhD position (Systems Theory Research) – Mathematics”). The deadline for the applications is on October 2nd, 2017. 

The required attachements of the application are (in PDF format):

– A motivation letter (1–2 pages) describing your background and main interests in mathematics
– Curriculum vitae (CV)
– Transcript of study records and certificate of the M. Sc. degree
– Possible references (1–2)

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Assistant Professor Lassi Paunonen for more information (email:, homepage:

Observer based control of distributed Port Hamiltonian systems

Start of the Thesis: September/October 2017.
Duration: 3 years.
Salary: 1500 Euros net/month.
Location: AS2M/FEMTO-ST, Besançon, France.

Yann Le Gorrec, Professor,
Hector Ramirez, Associate professor,

More info (pdf, 316 Ko)

The modeling of physical systems based on the representation of intrinsic energy exchanges between different energetic domains allows a modular description of their eventually complex dynamic behaviour. In this context, the port-Hamiltonian framework represents a powerful modeling and control tool. Port-Hamiltonian systems link the physical energy of a system and its dynamic behaviour through the definition of a geometric structure, named Dirac structure. This geometric structure, which arises in the modeling step, is instrumental for the stability analysis and the control design.

In the case of non-linear or distributed parameter systems, the structure is not only instrumental, but also fundamental to study the solutions in a systematic manner. Even though the formalism is not new [1], it has only been extended to distributed parameter systems in 2002 [2]. The complete parametrization of linear distributed port Hamiltonian systems controlled at the boundaries over 1D spatial domains, as well as the study of the existence of solutions and stability properties, can be found in [3, 4, 5]. These results have recently motivated the extension of passivity based control techniques to infinite dimensional port-Hamiltonian systems controlled at the boundaries [6, 7, 8] and with distributed control [9, 10]. In all cases these control design techniques have been developed based on state feedbacks.

The aim of the thesis is to extend these approaches to observer based boundary control of distributed parameter port Hamiltonian systems.


Energy based modeling and distributed control of a compliant bio-medical system

The aim of this project is to propose new models and robust control laws for a compliant bio-medical system actuated through electroactive polymers by using the port Hamiltonian framework.

Objectives and time planing

This thesis has three main objectives:

First, to develop a reliable model of the electro-active polymer taking the multiphysical, non linear and distributed parameters properties into account. This work will be done based on the theoretical results proposed in [4] and adapted to the considered application case (nature of polymer, mechanical structure and environment). The experimental validation will be done using the experimental resources developed in our department.

Second, to propose a structure preserving reduction/discretization method and to apply it to this class of systems with control design perspectives [15]. The influence of the physical parameters on the system dynamics and the errors due to the reduction will be studied.
The characteristic and number of the actuators will be also investigated.

Control design:
Third, to design robust control laws using the reduced order model and taking the approximations due this reduction into account. An experimental set-up will be built in order to test the proposed control design methods.

Candidates profile
Excellent MSc/Engineer in Automatic Control.
Strong knowledge background in automatic control and applied mathematics.
Fluent in speaking and reading English.


Yann Le Gorrec (Supervisor), Professor, FEMTO-ST AS2M, UBFC Besançon
Yongxin Wu, Assistant Professor, FEMTO-ST AS2M, UBFC Besançon

More info (pdf, 1435 Ko)

ERC DyCON - 2 PhD Contract in Dynamic Control

2 PhD Contracts
Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
Applied Mathematics
ERC-Advanced Grant- DYCON: Dynamic Control
PI: Enrique Zuazua

ERC DyCON - 2 PhD Contract in Dynamic Control

Contact: Enrike Zuazua

Phd in Dynamic Control Mines Paristech France

Analysis and rejection of mechanical  vibrations for drilling

Contacts:         Delphine Bresch-Pietri
                          Florent Di Meglio
                          Christophe Prieur

Keywords: Control, dynamical modeling, Partial Differential Equations, Delay systems, Matlab/Simulink

Location:  GIPSA-lab, Grenoble with frequent stays in CAS, Mines ParisTech, Paris

Context vibrations along the drillpipe and the drillbit in the oil and gas industry have a triple negative impact: increase of the Non-Productive Time (NP), damaging or even failure of the device and decrease of the average drilling velocity. In a context of overall cost reduction, operators are in need of non-intrusive strategies to limit or even suppress these vibrations. Control theory, enabling to analyze and control the drillpipe moves from the surface, offers an ideal framework to meet these needs.

Ph.D Objectives 

Physical phenomena at stake in the context of oil drilling are especially complex. First, interaction laws between the borehole and the drillbit are uncertain and intricate. Second, the physical length of the considered systems (several kilometers) implies the existence of mechanical waves propagation, which has to be explicitly taken into account in the modeling.

The first goal of this Ph.D will be to analyze the relative significance of these phenomena. Simulations and analysis of several dynamical modelings of variable complexities will be considered and compared in view of establishing one consistent with control design. Relevance of this modeling will be evaluated by comparison with experimental data from a test bench or field.

The second goal of this Ph.D will be the design of suitable control strategies enabling to limit structural vibrations. Among other possibilities, considered solutions include:

  • Prediction-based controller for uncertain variable (state-varying) time-delay systems;
  • Observer design using only measurements available at the surface of the well;
  • Adaptive controller or observer to reduce the impact of modeling uncertainties.


       The applicant should have solid notions of control theory and/or applied mathematics. Understanding of delay systems and/or partial differential equations is not mandatory but will be highly appreciated.

Applications should be declared before June 15 and include a detailed resume.


[1] D. Bresch-Pietri and M. Krstic, Adaptive output feedback for oil drilling stick-slip instability modeled by wave PDE with anti-damped dynamic boundary, in Proc. of the American Control Conference, 2014

[2] A. Depouhon and E. Detournay, Instability regimes and self-excited vibrations in deep drilling systems, Journal of Sound and Vibration 333, pp. 2019-2039, 2014

[3] F. Di Meglio, U.J.F. AArsnes, A distributed parameter system view of control problems in drilling, in Proc. of the IFAC Oil& Gas Workshop 2015

[4] C. Sagert, F. Di Meglio, M. Krstic and P. Rouchon, Backstepping and flatness approaches for stabilization of the stick-slip phenomenon for drilling, in Proc. of the 5th Symposium on System Structure and Control, 2013

[5] A. Smyshlyaev and M. Krstic, Boundary control of an anti-stable wave equation with anti-damping on the uncontrolled boundary, Systems and Control Letters, Vol. 58, pp. 617-623, 2009


Research internship

ERC DYCON-DEUSTOTECH training and research internships

Contact: Enrike Zuazua


The DyCon (Dynamic Control) project ( funded by the European Research Council-ERC ( brings the opportunity for excellent international students to join the world-class interdisciplinary research center DeustoTech ( in Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain.
DeustoTech is built up of researchers with diverse backgrounds in computer sciences,applied and computational mathematics and engineering, amongst other disciplines. DyCon requires motivated Undergraduate, Master and PhD students in mathematics and related areas.
We welcome applications for the internship positions for a maximum of one semester, which may take a form of:

  • Summer or one-semester stay
  • Master thesis
  • Industrial project
  • Part of Ph.D. thesis in third institutions

Students will be selected in view of their Curriculum vitae, but also, based on the affinity of their research topics and expertise with DyCon objectives. Internship students will fully integrate the activities of the team during their placement in DeustoTech and will contribute to the development of the theoretical and computational objectives of the different working packages to which they will be assigned.
Selected applicants will be responsible for learning, suggesting and applying ideas under the supervision of DyCon researchers and according to an established plan, with the objective to successfully solve the issues stated in the Internship position announcement and prepare the expected deliverables.
This internship placement will be implemented within a collaboration framework between the student Institution (or the student) and the host institution. The student grant will cover full board compensation during the placement. The management of the project is looking for candidates to take this placement during the spring 2016-2017 or the 2017-2018 academic year.

For interested candidates, please sent a complete Curriculum vitae and a letter of presentation in English to Dr Miren Arretxe ( by the end of April 2017.