Chemist, Engineer in Aerospace, Automotive or similar (f/m/x) – M.Sc., Diploma

Doctoral thesis

Enter the fascinating world of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) and help shape the future through research and innovation! We offer an exciting and inspiring working environment driven by the expertise and curiosity of our 11,000 employees from 100 nations and our unique infrastructure. Together, we develop sustainable technologies and thus contribute to finding solutions to global challenges. Would you like to join us in addressing this major future challenge? Then this is your place!

For our Institute of Combustion Technology in Stuttgart we are looking for

Chemist, Engineer in Aerospace, Automotive or similar (f/m/x) – M.Sc., Diploma

Doctorate in Alternative Fuel Production

What to expect:

The Institute of Combustion Technology is one of the world's leading institutes in the field of combustion research. Our 100 employees from various disciplines optimize technical combustion processes with the help of numerical models, modern experimental techniques and chemical kinetic methods. Alternative and synthetic fuels in liquid and gaseous form are a growing area of research at the institute. The focus here is on the characterization of combustion behavior, fuel flexibility and the avoidance of pollutants.


Do you want to drive forward the climate transition as part of your doctorate? Low-emission and performance-optimized Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) are the basis for our transition to climate and environmentally friendly aviation. The efficient identification, specification and approval of the best SAF candidates is a key building block for a faster, large-scale realization of our climate goals.

Are you interested in working with us to systematically lay the foundations for the development and optimization of these SAFs? Your PhD thesis will contribute to this by developing new methods for analyzing and evaluating the combustion behavior of different SAFs and their fuel components.


The doctoral position is numerically oriented and assigned to our "Chemical Kinetic Modeling" working group. The aim of their work is the modeling and numerical investigation of the combustion behavior of branched hydrocarbons, which are key components of various SAFs. Together with us, they are further developing our in-house and globally used reaction mechanism DLR Concise in order to model these key components. With the extended model, they can then map pollutant formation patterns and performance parameters such as cetane numbers in order to help shape the SAFs used in the future. Special attention is paid to the so-called NTC range and the associated reaction network at low temperatures, as this is of particular relevance for ignition and extinguishing processes as well as the formation of pollutants in combustion chambers. Your findings will flow directly into the development of simulation and evaluation tools for the design of alternative fuels.


Work with us on your doctorate against the background of numerous ongoing research projects in the field of alternative fuel production as well as their application in technical systems such as engines or gas turbines. You will benefit from a great deal of creative freedom and individual supervision. DLR offers you the opportunity to continue your education by participating in further training measures as part of the DLR graduate program. In our interdisciplinary institute, you will work closely with engineers, physicists, chemists and mechanics.


Your tasks:

  • Development and validation of chemical-kinetic models
  • Evaluation of pollutant formation and ignition behavior of alternative fuels
  • Analyzing and processing simulation results for communication with project partners
  • Presentation of own, processed scientific results and findings at national and international conferences
  • Preparation of technical and research reports and scientific publications in international peer-reviewed journals

What we expect from you:

  • above-average academic university degree (Diploma/Master's degree) in the field of natural sciences (e.g. chemistry, physics), engineering (e.g. aerospace, automotive, power, environment, mechanical engineering) or other degrees qualifying for a doctorate
  • Basic knowledge of thermodynamics and chemical kinetics
  • Programming skills, especially in Python
  • Very good command of written and spoken English


  • Ideally practical simulation experience in chemical-kinetic combustion
  • Expertise in the field of alternative fuels is desirable
  • Good self-organization and a high degree of initiative in dealing with complex technical and scientific challenges
  • Experience in independent project work including preparation, presentation and scientific utilization

What we offer:

DLR stands for diversity, appreciation and equality for all people. We promote independent work and the individual development of our employees both personally and professionally. To this end, we offer numerous training and development opportunities. Equal opportunities are of particular importance to us, which is why we want to increase the proportion of women in science and management in particular. Applicants with severe disabilities will be given preference if they are qualified.

Further information:

Starting date: 01 July 2024

Duration of contract: 3 years 

Type of employment: home office possible

Remuneration: The remuneration is based on the principles of doctoral student remuneration at the centers of the Hermann von Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers e.V. (HGF) and corresponds to around 75 % of salary group E13 TV EntgO Bund

Vacancy-ID: 95619


Dr. Torsten Methling Institute of Combustion Technology 

Tel.: 0711 6862 8318

DLR - Helmholtz / Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt

Visit employer page

Deadline: 2024-07-31
Location: Germany, Stuttgart, Baden Württemberg
Categories: Aerospace Engineering, automotive engineering, Chemist, Chemistry, Physics,


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