PhD researcher: smart grids, distributed control and privacy

    KU Leuven
    EngineeringElectrical engineering
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    31/08/2019 23:59 - Europe/Brussels
    Belgium › Genk

A peer-to-peer electricity market allows users to trade electricity among themselves, reducing their electricity costs. In addition, electricity exchange between nearby users can significantly reduce electrical losses during transport over distribution lines. Bids and offers in such a market can be created from the flexibility of a heterogeneous set of generation devices, such as PV, storage devices, such as batteries, and flexible loads, such as electric boilers.
However, such markets may also create an opportunity for malicious entities to misbehave in order to reduce costs or maximise profits. Potential threats are impersonation, data manipulation, eavesdropping, disputes, and privacy breaches. As an example of a privacy breach, consider entities which have access to users’ offers and bids. They may use this data to infer who is selling or buying how much electricity and when. Such data is closely correlated to users’ consumption patterns, which potentially reveal sensitive information; and which may facilitate consumer profiling by fingerprinting and tracking the use of specific electronic appliances. We will also assess the impact of a decentralised peer-to-peer electricity trading system on the current energy market value chain, the changing roles of different core stakeholders and the identification of new players, such as the role of (third party) matchmaking platforms.
Within this project context (https://www.esat.kuleuven.be/cosic/project/snippet/), we will combine the latest smart grid research methods on demand response (incl. machine learning) and flexibility management with the state-of-art cryptographic techniques (such as computations over encrypted data) to realise peer-to-peer electricity trading in a citizen energy communioty, which is privacy-friendly by design.


The researcher will be a KU Leuven PhD student (Engineering Science), and also work as part of EnergyVille's research team in Genk. 

She/He gets a contract as PhD scholar (doctoraatsbursaal, zie http://www.kuleuven.be/personeel/jobsite/phd-info).

A PhD typically takes 4 years, where the contract is renewed yearly.

Eligibility criteria

 We are looking for an enthusiastic PhD candidate with the degree of Master of Science in Engineering Science (electrical engineering, energy science, computer engineering...) or alike and with a strong interest in smart energy systems and/or security and privacy, and a solid engineering background. The candidate should have distinguished him/herself during the studies (excellent grades, publications) and shall wish to acquire a PhD degree in the course of four years at the Arenberg Doctoral School of the University of Leuven.

In addition to a scientific and research attitude, the candidate can process complex matters in an independent way.

The candidate shall be a citizen of a EU member state or have an MSc degree from an EEA country.

Selection process

For more information please contact Prof. dr. ir. Geert Deconinck, tel.: +32 16 32 11 26, mail: geert.deconinck@kuleuven.be.
You can apply for this job no later than 31/08/2019 via the online application tool

Web site for additional job details

Map Information

Job Work Location Personal Assistance locations
Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven

Open, Transparent, Merit based Recruitment procedures of Researchers (OTM-R)

Know more about it at KU Leuven

Know more about OTM-R

EURAXESS offer ID: 426779


The responsibility for the jobs published on this website, including the job description, lies entirely with the publishing institutions. The application is handled uniquely by the employer, who is also fully responsible for the recruitment and selection processes.


Please contact support@euraxess.org if you wish to download all jobs in XML.