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PhD M/W position in Physics

This offer is available in the following languages:
Français - Anglais

Date Limite Candidature : mercredi 21 avril 2021

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General information

Reference : UMR6614-THIBES-016
Date of publication : Wednesday, March 31, 2021
Scientific Responsible name : Marie-Charlotte RENOU
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 October 2021
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135,00 € gross monthly

Description of the thesis topic

Subject of the thesis: Theoretical and numerical study of interfacial instability in a liquid metal battery.

Scientific field and scientific themes: Physics and Energy.

Detailed presentation of the research project:
Liquid metal batteries represent one of the most promising solutions for large-scale energy storage, differing from standard batteries on account of their liquid electrodes. These batteries consist of three stratified liquid layers: a molten salt (electrolyte) sandwiched between two liquid metals (electrodes). They are operated at very high temperatures to keep the electrodes in a liquid state and are subject to current-induced internal heating and magnetic fields.
Liquid metal batteries have advantages in terms of kinetics, durability, and adaptability due to their liquid-state electrodes. However, as fluid systems, they can be subjected to hydrodynamic instabilities, which can limit the battery performance and even lead to short-circuiting by the rupture of the electrolyte.
This PhD will focus on the metal pad roll instability that can develop when an interface separating two fluids of different electrical conductivity is traversed by free currents. In liquid metal batteries, this instability may occur at both interfaces, and because the electrolyte generally has a lower thickness to limit the internal heating, it can lead to the rupture of the electrolyte. The objective of the PhD is to carry out a nonlinear stability analysis on the three-layer system to understand the conditions for the sandwiched-layer rupture. The theoretical predictions will be compared to direct numerical simulations to cross-validate the results. A multiscale tool of analysis, developed at the CORIA lab in the context of recent research on atomisation, will be applied to describe the coupling between the two interfaces of the three-layer fluid system.

Material and financial scientific conditions of the research project: it is funded by LabEx EMC3 HILIMBA project.

Objective of promoting the research work of the doctoral student: several publications and communications in national and international journals and conferences.

Work Context

The PhD student will join the DMC (Dynamics and Morphology of Complex Flows) group of TASC (Turbulence, Atomization, Sprays and Chaos) department from UMR 6614-CORIA lab, located on Madrillet campus at Saint Etienne du Rouvray, in the southern suburb of Rouen.

He will be enrolled on the PhD program of the PSIME (Physics, Engineering Sciences, Materials and Energy) doctoral school:

The PhD work will be supervised by 3 researchers of CORIA lab, specialists of the stability theory, the multi-scale analysis of fluids systems and direct numerical simulations of multiphase flows, respectively.

The PhD student will work in close association with another PhD student of the project, hired at UMR 6294 – LOMC lab and responsible for studying the thermal convection in a liquid metal battery (see offer UMR6294-***).

Constraints and risks

Constraints and risks Frequent travel between Rouen and le Havre should be expected as part of the HILIMBA project.

Additional Information

The applicant should hold a Master's Degree in General Physics or in Mechanical Engineering with a solid knowledge of fluid mechanics. Skills in stability theory and electromagnetism will be particularly appreciated.

Documents to be provided to apply:
-a detailed CV
-a cover letter

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