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Large-scale distribution network planning tools with efficient integration of distributed resources

The evolution of the network towards a smart system that allows using the synergies of the distributed energy resources is critical. For this paradigm shift, new models are necessary to analyse future scenarios and define strategic roadmaps. This PhD thesis will cover the elaboration of new network expansion models required to upgrade existing distribution networks models with efficient integration of distributed resources, generation, demand and storage. In previous projects, Comillas University and JRC (European Commission) have analysed distributed energy resources with a traditional Reference Network Model, considering conventional reinforcements in the distribution networks. However, in order to achieve an efficient integration of the resources into the system it is necessary that passive networks evolve into smarter distribution grids. Examples of this paradigm shift are, for instance, on-load tap changers in the distribution transformers, advanced control of substations, active and reactive power control in inverters, dynamic ratings of equipment, demand-response and storage systems.

Location and indicative timing

The successful candidate will develop its activities both at Comillas Pontifical University (Madrid, Spain) and at JRC (Ispra site, Italy) in the framework of the JRC’s Collaborative Doctorate Program.

Tentative staring date of the PhD cycle is January 2020. The successful candidate will be initially hosted at Comillas University for a maximum of 9 months, as a Research Assistant Type B. At Comillas university, the student will be hired with an equivalent gross annual amount of 17,445€ per year for 2019. In addition, during this stay, the IIT covers 90% of the doctorate fee and the student can enjoy all the advantages offered to Comillas students. After the initial stay at Comillas University, the candidate will join the JRC in Ispra for 24 months under a Grantholder 20 framework

the working conditions being specified in the following web page, with an annual gross salary of 39,820€


Finally, he will return to Comillas Pontifical University for three months to finish the dissertation and for its defense.

Eligibility criteria

The PhD student will start its research activity in January 2020 and will spend up to 9 months at Comillas University. The PhD student will have to attend mandatory training courses during its stay at the university, ideally during its first stay. If attendance to additional training courses is needed according to the PhD student's background, maximum duration of the PhD will be extended accordingly. The following 2 years, the PhD student will stay at JRC. A final stay of three months at Comillas Pontifical University is planned to finish the dissertation and for its defense.

Selection criteria and requirements

The selection of the candidate is carried out in two phases, a first selection is done by Comillas University and a second one by JRC. The merits of the candidates are ranked based on pre-defined criteria according to the submitted documents (CV, the academic record, a motivation letter, two recommendation letters, a piece of written work, certificates in courses). The highest rank individuals are interviewed to take the final decision.

Requirements: Master’s degree in Electrical or Electronic Engineering or equivalent. Training at master level in research methods or in one of the research lines of Comillas’ PhD program. Good knowledge of spoken and written English (B2 level)

Specific requirements are:
Programming skills (Matlab, C++,Python,…). Optimization

Selection criteria include:

Knowledge of the field of the candidate. Capacity and skills of the candidate. Motivation and aspiration. Programming skills. Knowledge in English

How to apply

The deadline for applying is November, 30th 2019. Prospective candidates must submit a CV, the academic record, a motivation letter, two recommendation letters, and a piece of written work (e.g., master thesis or a paper). Please apply electronically through the following web portal.


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