We are looking for an excellent PhD candidate for R&D project “Development of advanced monitoring and control schemes for the primary aluminum industry” funded by the National Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and Alcoa Corporation, one of the world’s leading producer of primary aluminium. The research will take place at Université Laval and Alcoa plants. Université Laval, through the Aluminium Research Centre − REGAL, is a leading academic research institution in the area of aluminium production. REGAL−Laval consists of 15 Faculty members and about 50 graduate students. The candidate will be integrated within this group, and will benefit from the unique carbon anode production and characterization infrastructure.
Project: Automatic control of green anode resistivity.
Context. Pre−baked carbon anodes are required for primary aluminum production by the Hall−Héroult process. Variations in anode raw materials adversely affect their quality. New process control schemes are needed for producing high quality anodes consistently.
Objective. Develop an automatic control scheme to minimize green anode resistivity measured using a new on− line sensor technology.
Methodology. The project requires conducting experimental designs in the REGAL laboratory and at the Alcoa Deschambault plant to quantify the relationships between anode paste formulation and green anode resistivity measurements under different conditions. Based on collected data, the candidate will build dynamic models of part of the anode manufacturing plant in the Matlab/Simulink environment. The performance of different optimizing control schemes will be tested and compared in simulation to identify the most promising strategy. Plant implementation of the most promising control scheme for testing is also envisaged towards the end of the project. The candidate is expected to interact with Alcoa’s personnel, to make regular site visits to gather data, to design and perform a certain number of experiments on the full−scale process to enrich the data bases, and test control schemes. The Deschambault plant is located 40 minutes drive from university.
Start date. May 2022.
Financial support. 25K$/year for up to 4 years.
Requirements. To have maintained a minimum cumulative average of B (or equivalent) during the undergrad and Master’s degrees. To be autonomous. Capacity to read, write and speak French or English. Knowledge of process data analysis using statistical methods, process control, Matlab and/or of the aluminum reduction process (Hall−Héroult) are important assets. Holding a valid Canadian driving licence or obtaining it within the first year of the project is a requirement.
Application. Send CV and transcripts (undergrad and masters) to:
We are looking for excellent MSc and PhD candidates for R&D project “Development of advanced monitoring and control schemes for the primary aluminum industry” funded by the National Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and Alcoa Corporation, one of the world’s leading producer of primary aluminium. The research will take place at Université Laval and Alcoa plants. Université Laval, through the Aluminium Research Centre − REGAL, is a leading academic research institution in the area of aluminium production. REGAL−Laval consists of 15 Faculty members and about 50 graduate students. The candidate will be integrated within this group, and will benefit from the unique carbon anode production and characterization infrastructure.
Project: Advanced cell monitoring and control based on individual anode electrical currents.
Context. Cheaper and reliable technologies for measuring individual anode electrical currents in Hall−Héroult reduction cells are now available. These signals may help develop the next generation of cell control systems to better capture local abnormal conditions in the cell and mitigate them.
Objective. Improve detection and diagnosis of cell abnormal events by combining features extracted from individual anode electrical currents (IACS) and relevant cell operation variables.
Methodology. The project first requires collecting IACS signals from a number of reduction cells at an Alcoa reduction plant under different operating conditions (normal and abnormal). Second, signal processing and analysis algorithms will be developed to extract relevant features from IACS allowing to detect and diagnose abnormal events, such as low−voltage anode effects, anodic incidents, magneto−hydrodynamic instabilities, etc. The monitoring scheme will be tested at the Alcoa plant according to carefully designed experiments. How to use the information provided by the system to apply corrective actions will be determined. The candidate is expected to interact with Alcoa’s personnel, to possibly make regular site visits to gather data, to design and perform a certain number of experiments on the full−scale process to enrich the data bases, and test the monitoring and control schemes. The targeted plant is located in Deschambault, 40 minutes drive from campus.
Start date. May 2022.
Financial support. MSc 18K$/year for up to 2 years; PhD 25K$/year for up to 4 years.
Requirements. To have maintained a minimum cumulative average of B (or equivalent) during the undergrad and Master’s degrees (PhD applicants). To be autonomous. Capacity to read, write and speak French or English. Knowledge of process data analysis using statistical methods, process control, Matlab and/or of the aluminum reduction process (Hall−Héroult) are important assets. Holding a valid Canadian driving licence or obtaining it within the first year of the project is a requirement.
Application. Send CV and transcripts (undergrad and masters) to:
Competition No. – A107447097 Closing Date – Will remain open until filled.
The Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering at the University of Alberta invites applications for one full-time, tenure-track Assistant Professor position in Sustainable Energy Systems. This position is part of the University of Alberta’s priority to build a diverse faculty; thus, candidates from traditionally underrepresented and equity deserving groups are strongly encouraged to apply.
The successful candidate will have research expertise in the area of sustainable energy systems related to life cycle and techno-commercial analysis and thermodynamics. The successful candidate’s research will complement the existing research in the department on various aspects of energy systems, including carbon capture, materials development, and renewable energy production.
The successful candidate will have a PhD in Chemical Engineering or a closely related field. They are expected to be or become a licensed Professional Engineer through the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA, https://www.apega.ca/). Licensure must be obtained within five years from the date of hire.
We are seeking candidates with a demonstrated commitment to excellence, innovation, and diversity, equity, and inclusion in their research, teaching, and service work. Consideration will be given to candidates with a record of publications in reputable peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings. Consideration will also be given to those who provide evidence of research and teaching experience and skills, and who have a demonstrated record of service and volunteerism broadly related to their research, teaching, and/or equity, diversity, and inclusivity.
The Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering aims to maintain our position among the leading schools in North America. With a present complement of more than 45 faculty members, research in the Department is vigorous and covers all major areas of chemical and materials engineering. Our research strengths are diverse, and include process systems engineering, surface and interfacial science, reaction engineering and catalysis, biochemical and biomedical engineering, energy-related materials, and welding and metallurgy. We celebrate creativity, diversity, perseverance, and a collaborative spirit and recognize the importance of academic excellence in conjunction with work/life balance, interdisciplinary research, and mentorship. Our graduate program attracts outstanding students from the best schools worldwide and presently has an enrollment of over 400 students, including approximately 200 PhD students.
The University of Alberta in Edmonton is one of Canada’s top teaching and research universities, with an international reputation for excellence across the humanities, sciences, creative arts, business, engineering, and health sciences. The University of Alberta offers close to 900 undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs in 18 faculties on five campuses, including one rural and one francophone campus, and has more than 275,000 alumni worldwide. The university and its people remain dedicated to the promise made in 1908 by founding president Henry Marshall Tory that knowledge shall be used for “uplifting the whole people.”
The University of Alberta is in Edmonton, home to over one million people and Alberta’s capital. Edmonton offers a vibrant start-up ecosystem and a major industrial corridor with several opportunities for partnerships. The city offers the amenities of a large urban center while maintaining a friendly atmosphere. Edmonton is known internationally for its thriving arts scene with a variety of family activities, an array of indoor and outdoor sports and fitness opportunities, one of North America’s largest stretches of urban parkland, and top-ranked health care services. Campus offers child care, and there are multiple housing options within steps of campus. Faculty members are offered parental and medical leaves, retirement benefits, and healthcare benefits. The Faculty of Engineering values families and aims to minimize the long distance separation of them when possible through our spouse/partner hiring practices.
To apply, please submit the following to the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering at firstname.lastname@example.org:
Cover letter that includes highlights of the candidate’s profile and the names of the three referees (see below for more information)
Research statement that outlines main areas of current research and short- and long-term research goals (2 pages maximum)
Teaching dossier that includes a brief teaching philosophy and evidence of, or potential for, teaching effectiveness (2 pages maximum)
To assist the University in complying with mandatory reporting requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (R203 (3)(e), please include the first digit of your Canadian Social Insurance Number at the bottom of your cover letter. If you do not have a Canadian Social Insurance Number, please indicate this at the bottom of your cover letter.
Letters of reference will be requested from applicants selected for interviews. Review of applications will begin on or shortly after January 31, 2022. Only those applicants selected for interviews will be contacted.
COVID-19 Vaccination: Proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 in compliance with the University’s COVID-19 Vaccination Directive is required. Fully Vaccinated means a status an individual achieves 14 days after having received the recommended number of doses of a COVID-19 vaccine approved by Health Canada or the World Health Organization, and requires the individual to maintain the recommended number and type of vaccine doses as updated and required by Health Canada thereafter.
All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. If suitable Canadian citizens or permanent residents cannot be found, other individuals will be considered. The University of Alberta is committed to an equitable, diverse, and inclusive workforce. We welcome applications from all qualified persons. We encourage women; First Nations, Métis and Inuit persons; members of visible minority groups; persons with disabilities; persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity and expression; and all those who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas and the University to apply.