PhD scholarship in Physiological Bioprocess Control – DTU Chemical Engineering

Are you eager to turn recent discoveries of the life sciences into processes and products? By giving you the best possible scientific foundation and a vivid research environment, DTU Chemical and Biochemical engineering is probably one of the best places where this can happen.

The ability to control biotechnological processes at their optimal state accurately and automatically is of considerable interest since it enables to reduce production costs while at the same time maintaining the quality of the metabolic products. The highly dynamic and non-linear nature of bioprocesses poses great difficulties to bioprocess monitoring and bioprocess control approaches. In addition to that, the cell metabolism often changes during the production of recombinant proteins. This phase is therefore often poorly controlled by employing sub-optimal, static parameters and nutrient additions.

Purpose of the project
Within this project the possibilities to control the production phase of recombinantly produced proteins will be explored. Special attention will be placed on the control of cell physiological parameters during the production phase. Physiological parameter include biomass specific rates such as nutrient uptake, oxygen consumption, carbon dioxide production as well as inducer consumption and product formation rates. To control them predetermined dynamic feed profiles and advanced and predictive control structures will be applied on multiple feeds. This does not only lead to increased productivities and better scalable processes but also to a stabilization of the production phase, which is an important step towards continuous biomanufacturing.

Besides establishing a suitable control and monitoring structures and assessing their performance in in-silico simulations the working principle and the potential of physiological process control is shown on two case study organisms (e.g. recombinant E. coli and methanol induced P. pastoris) including verification experiments, executed within the Pilot Plant and PROSYS research centers at DTU Chemical and Biochemical Engineering.

Responsibilities and qualifications
You must have a two-year master’s degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master’s degree (e.g.: a MSc degree equivalent to at least 5 years of studies including a BSc degree) in (bio)chemical engineering, process engineering, bioengineering, biotechnology, biochemistry, molecular Biology or similar.

You are a newly graduated graduate or you might have experience from industry and a strong desire to turn towards research. We expect you to have both an interest in experimental laboratory work and conceptual/ theoretical work. Experience with microbial cultivations and analytics as well as numerical programming are an advantage.

You are ambitious, take responsibility and you are driven by curiosity and open minded also for entering new paths and accepting challenges when necessary. You have a natural flair to share knowledge and create results as a team but also take the responsibility to push things forward.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see 
DTU’s rules for the PhD education.   

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years. The starting date will be according to mutual agreement, but at the earliest 1 July 2023. The position is a full-time position.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Assistant Professor Julian Kager, phone: +45 9351 1553,  

You can read more about DTU Chemical Engineering at DTU Chemical Engineering.

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark. Furthermore, you have the option of joining our monthly free seminar “PhD relocation to Denmark and startup “Zoom” seminar” for all questions regarding the practical matters of moving to Denmark and working as a PhD at DTU.

Application procedure
Your complete online application must be submitted no later than 16 April 2023 (Danish time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link “Apply now”, fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF fileThe file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma (in English) including official description of grading scale

You may apply prior to ob­tai­ning your master’s degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

The Pilot Plant is one of the best equipped facilities in chemical and biochemical engineering around the world and used for practical teaching, research and close cooperation with industry and start-ups. In the last years together with the center of Process Systems Engineering (PROSYS) great advancements in digitalization and experimental capabilities for biochemical up- and downstream processing was made, to make the pilot plant a perfect playground for talented, young scientists and a great location for ambitious projects.

The Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering at DTU is a leader in innovative teaching and research, built on core technical subjects and engineering scientific disciplines. The teaching and research covers separation processes, reaction engineering, dynamics and process regulation, process and facility planning, unit operations, heat transmission, fluid mechanics and applied thermodynamics. The Department enjoys very close relations with international partners, and especially a wide range of industrial companies.   

Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear mission to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That mission lives on today. DTU has 13,400 students and 5,800 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.

Deadline: 2023-04-16 at 23:59
Unit: dtu

Read the job description at the university homepage or apply.

Post expires on Sunday April 16th, 2023