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Postdoctoral Researcher Forecasting of photovoltaic module energy generation
Employer: imec
Location: Leuven, Belgium
Employment Start Date: As soon as possible

Organization Description:

Imec is the world-leading research and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital technologies. The combination of our widely acclaimed leadership in microchip technology and profound software and ICT expertise is what makes us unique. By leveraging our world-class infrastructure and local and global ecosystem of partners across a multitude of industries, we create groundbreaking innovation in application domains such as healthcare, smart cities and mobility, logistics and manufacturing, and energy.


As a trusted partner for companies, start-ups and universities we bring together close to 3,500 brilliant minds from over 70 nationalities. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium and also has distributed R&D groups at a number of Flemish universities, in the Netherlands, Taiwan, USA, China, and offices in India and Japan. All of these particular traits make imec to be a top-class employer. To strengthen this position as a leading player in our field, we are looking for those passionate talents that make the difference!


Job Description:

Imec’s PV department is an internationally recognized research group thanks to its experts and world-class technology labs. To respond to the challenge of integration renewables and photovoltaics in the smart grid, PV energy generation forecasting is becoming a critical topic. We launched several new activities jointly with our academic and industrial partners to respond to this challenge, and anticipate a rapid growth in this domain. Therefore, we look for a dynamic researcher eager to contribute to this goal.
PV forecasting (nowcasting) aims to predict on a timescale of minutes to several days ahead the PV production based on combination of advanced weather and PV forecast models. Imec’s PV forecasting approach relies on its own patented bottom-up physics based simulation framework for PV. This initial framework allowed us to reach record precision even in daily energy yield prediction in highly varying real-life conditions. Its combination with weather/cloud forecast is our current research focus that can lead to significant precision improvement. Besides the algorithm development and the corresponding software framework, we work on a complementary monitoring/measurement hardware framework that is crucial to have location specific forecast data to maximize the improvement and hence the expected return/revenues.

As post-doc in PV forecasting you will be leading the further extension of this truly state-of-the-art simulation framework. Jointly with metrology experts, you will also initiate its first power plant scale validation, that will assist the further model development. 

This position will be at the site of EnergyVille where you will have direct access to outdoor measurements sites, and expert working on gird load management and various topic related to smart grid development.


You have a PhD in Computer Engineering with previous application experience in engineering topics or Electrical Engineering with strong software and modeling skills. You have a strong interest/background in physics/engineering. You have advanced knowledge of the following languages: object-oriented and script languages, machine learning. You are a precision and detail oriented person, and enjoy working in a team. You have excellent scientific reporting skills and can present scientific results (publications, conferences, seminars). You have good English communication skills.

We look for candidates with a strong computational engineering sciences background preferably with some physics-based modeling insights, combined with good software skill training which allows to arrive at a solid extensible framework which can be supported and extended to partner requests. You have previously worked with large simulation framework in PV system or other fields. You have preferably also experience with outdoor and statistical data analysis of PV module and systems, and understand the associated metrology challenges (wind, temperature, irradiance measurements, calibration).

Your assignments will be mostly simulations, data analysis. You will be involved in multiple research and industrial projects; therefore, good organization skills are necessary to succeed in this position. You will be often interacting with research partners; hence good communication skills are also expected from you. You will join a cross-disciplinary team with experts in module technology, measurements and system design. In a post-doc at imec we expect that you are someone with an interest and drive to be on the forefront of your field.

This postdoctoral position is funded by imec through KU Leuven. Because of the specific financing statute which targets international mobility for postdocs, only candidates who did not stay or work/study in Belgium for more than 24 months in the past 3 years can be considered for the position (short stays such as holiday, participation in conferences, etc. are not taken into account).

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Date Posted: February 22, 2018