PhD Researcher: Novel Modelling and Analysis for Energy Efficient Building Design

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The position is embedded in the Architectural Engineering Division of KU Leuven and in the researcher group "FOR 2363: Assessment of design alternatives in early design phases based on adaptive detailing" funded by the German research organization DFG.
The Architectural Engineering Division aims for innovation in building design by adopting an engineering approach to architecture. The focus is on the technical aspects of architecture such as structural systems, building physics, MEP, acoustics and lighting. These elements are tackled in a multidisciplinary setting in order to assess and improve the overall performance and sustainability of buildings and the built environment. One focus is the use of advanced computer methods for energy-efficient and sustainable building. This research involves the fields of building information modelling (BIM), systems engineering with complexity management as well as statistics and machine learning. The chief aim is multidisciplinary integration for design computer-based decision assistance.
The researcher group FOR 2263 with Partners in Bochum, München, Essen and Leuven is devoted to the development of methods that allow the assessment of alternative building designs which are partly incomplete and vague. To this end, the concepts of formally defined levels of development (LOD) and design variants are introduced into BIM data models and used as basis for communicating with performance prediction tools. The outcomes of this development will allow to better support the early phases of building design and help to find the most suitable design option. The group includes five projects. The position is part of the project "system-based simulation of energy flows".


The project "system-based simulation of energy flows" provides novel methods for an important analysis discipline for the researcher group. It develops a modelling and analysis approach with the aim of a simple, quick and sufficiently exact estimation of the operational and embodied energy demand embedded in the multi-LOD BIM approach of the group. Methodical basis is the paradigm of parametric object-oriented and flow-based systems modelling and analysis for buildings and their performance. The system model to be developed shall have two chief modelling levels: First, the system flow modelling and, second, a modelling of parametric interdependencies. The systems flow modelling captures the relevant energy and material flows, if necessary, in a dynamic way. The model of parametric interdependencies contains calculation methods of the flow quantities.


We are looking for an enthusiastic PhD candidate with the following qualifications:
  • A master degree in the field of science in engineering (architecture, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, informatics ...) with relation to buildings and energy;
  • Skills of computer modelling, especially of building information modelling (BIM);
  • Experience with building energy performance calculation and simulation;
  • Knowledge about systems engineering, complexity management and systems modelling (e.g. SysML) or the motivation to get familiar with this field;
  • A research attitude with the ability to work independently on complex matters and maybe with first scientific experience;
  • The ability to publish research results at conferences and in peer-reviewed journals in English. German language skills are not required.

The successful candidate will enter a highly evaluated scientific environment and be included in a young and dynamic group of six professors with a steadily growing group of PhD students. He or she will focus on PhD research within the scope of the above described project. Furthermore, the candidate's tasks include support of the preparation of research proposals and minor teaching tasks. He gets a contract as PhD scholar (doctoraatsbursaal, see
How to apply:
You can apply for this job no later than December 15, 2016 via the online application tool.


Kontakt für Bewerbungen
Please apply with a cover letter, a CV and one piece of writing not exceeding 10.000 words (e.g. one of your publications or an MA thesis chapter).
For more information, please contact prof. dr. ir. Philipp Geyer, mail:

Details der Stellenanzeige

Befristete Anstellung
Berufserfahrung nicht vorausgesetzt
3001 Heverlee
Materialwissenschaft & Werkstofftechnik, Maschinenbau

Über KU Leuven

KU Leuven is an ambitious, international and research-oriented university. Internally, the university tries to maintain a balance between the power of the big ship and the flotilla of small, mobile, independent vessels of which it is composed. KU Leuven is home to a lot of creative, young and academic talent. As a leading university in Europe, it is looking for staff who can think outside the box.

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