PhD Position: Aeronautical Information Management for UTM

TU Delft University
Study in:Netherlands
Deadline: 30 September 2017

PhD Position: Aeronautical Information Management for UTM

Department/faculty: Aerospace Engineering
Level: Master degree
Working hours: 38 hours per week
Contract: 4 years
Salary: €2222 to €2840 per month gross

Aerospace Engineering

The faculty of Aerospace Engineering at Delft University of Technology is one of the world’s largest faculties devoted entirely to aerospace engineering. In the Netherlands it is the only research and education institute directly related to the aerospace engineering sector. It covers the whole spectrum of aerospace engineering subjects. In aeronautics, the faculty covers subjects ranging from aerodynamics and flight propulsion to structures and materials and from control and simulation to air transport and operations. In astronautics, topics include astrodynamics, space missions and space systems engineering. The faculty has around 2,700 BSc and MSc students, 225 PhD candidates and 27 professors supported by scientific staff.
The faculty’s mission is to be the best Aerospace Engineering faculty in the world, inspiring and educating students through modern education techniques and enabling staff to perform ambitious research of the highest quality for the future of aerospace. The working atmosphere at the faculty is friendly, open-minded and dedicated.


The Control and Operations Department houses the aerospace operations expertise of the Aerospace Engineering Faculty at the TU Delft and focuses on improving the safety and efficiency of air transport while mitigating environmental effects. The concentration of all operational knowledge, modelling, and tools lies at the basis of the department’s strategy for the future, which is to further improve the faculty’s research and educational programme and its ties with national and international developments.


The Control and Simulation (C&S) section of the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering aims to advance the development of autonomous control systems and combined human-machine systems in aerospace, building on a solid theoretical basis and physical insights while exploiting theoretical progress in adjacent fields, and to validate these systems experimentally in world-class facilities, effectively closing the loop between theory and practice.
C&S aims to be a leading research group in the integration, development, and testing of new theories on control, autonomous, and cognitive systems (with and without human elements).

PhD Position Job description

In the currently foreseen UTM, small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) are mainly intended to operate below 500 ft. in very low level (VLL) operations. Additionally, “no drone” or “limited drone zones” are foreseen. These operations go beyond the scope of traditional AIS/AIM, as they relate to activities on the ground which are extremely relevant for drones but not for traditional manned aviation. Furthermore, drone pilots are often on the ground below the coverage of conventional communication systems (e.g. VHF radios) used for air traffic management (ATM), and use portable control devices.

As part of your PhD, you will work in an international (EU-funded) consortium on an operational concept for aeronautical information management for UTM in Europe. In addition to exploring new processes, services and solutions for UAS aeronautical information management, your PhD work will specifically focus on modelling and validation of these AIM concepts through large-scale traffic simulations. The massive number of expected vehicles you will have to consider will require you to employ novel data science analysis methodologies. You will publish your results in leading, peer-reviewed journals. These publications will be combined in your final dissertation.


The PhD position is funded by the SESAR2020 DREAMS project. You will be working in an international consortium, which means that good proficiency in English (spoken and written) is required. Furthermore, the position requires an MSc in Aerospace Engineering, Aeronautics or a comparable degree, thorough knowledge of air traffic management and flight operations, and excellent programming (e.g. C++, Python) and mathematical skills. Preferably, you also have experience in writing scientific reports and papers.

Conditions of employment

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.
As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

Information and application

For more information, please contact Joost Ellerbroek, e-mail: To apply, please e-mail a detailed CV and letter of application by 30 September 2017 to Joost Ellerbroek,
When applying, please refer to vacancy number LR17-28.
If your MSc diploma and transcript are not in Dutch, English, French or German and you will be the selected candidate, the TU Delft will ask you to deliver a certified translation.

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