Netherlands: PhD candidate or Postdoc on “Smarter railroad maintenance via stochastic model checking?” at University of Twente

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Job description

Goal of the ArRangeer project is to develop smart railroad maintenance techniques through stochastic modeling, analysis and optimization. In particular, our aim is to extend the widely used fault tree formalism with maintenance models. You will model strategies for preventive and corrective maintenance, inspection and monitoring. You will also develop and implement new analysis and optimization algorithms.

The aim is to develop techniques and tools that are able to:
(1) compare the effect of different maintenance strategies on the availability, reliability, robustness, and maintenance costs;
(2) automatically synthesize maintenance strategies that are optimal w.r.t. given criteria (availability, reliability, …) subject to a (cost) budget.

Key to tackle these challenges is the exploitation of stochastic model checking; the scientific core of our work is the extension and refinement of stochastic model checking and stochastic decisions techniques to maintenance planning problems.
During the whole project, we will extensively cooperate with the RWTH Aachen University, and with maintenance engineers from ProRail, and expert companies Movares and NedTrain. Key project deliverables are efficient analysis algorithms and a workable tool to be used in the ProRail context.
For more information about the project, see:


The PhD student will participate in the Twente Graduate School on Dependable and Secure Computing, led by Prof.dr. Jaco van de Pol. This research programme offers advanced courses to deepen your scientific knowledge. Participation in national and/or international summer schools, conference and workshops, as well as visits to other prestigious research institutes and universities are also foreseen.

Further information:
– Dr. Marielle Stoelinga (
– Prof. dr. Joost-Pieter Katoen (

Your application
To apply for one of these positions, please include
– a cover letter (explain your specific interest and qualifications);
– a full Curriculum Vitae
– a list of all courses + grades, and a short description of your MSc thesis project
– references (contact information) of two scientific staff members

Please submit your application before December 1, 2013.

Conditions of employment

The candidate should have an MSc or PhD degree in Computer Science, Mathematics, or an equivalent qualification. The ideal candidate has a thorough theoretical background, and should have ample experience with software development and/or industrial case studies.The University of Twente offers excellent working conditions, an exciting scientific environment, and a green and lively campus. We offer

  • A PhD position for four years (38 hrs/week).
  • Full status as an employee at the University of Twente, including pension and health care benefits.
  • Gross salary PhD student: ranging from EUR 2083 (1st year) to EUR 2664 (4th year) per month, plus holiday allowance (8%) and end-of-year bonus (8.3%).
  • Gross salary Postdoc: starting from EUR 2919 plus holiday allowance (8%) and end-of-year bonus (8.3%)
  • Excellent facilities for professional and personal development.
  • Good secondary conditions, in accordance with the collective labour agreement CAO-NU for Dutch universities.
  • A green campus with lots of sports facilities.

Starting date of the position: as soon as possible after January 1, 2014.


The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which drives change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university in the Netherlands; divided over six faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. The University of Twente has a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out pioneering research.

The faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS) comprises three disciplines that shape Information and Communication Technology. ICT is more than communication. In almost every product we use mathematics, electronics and computer technology and ICT now contributes to all of societies’ activities. The faculty works together intensively with industrial partners and researchers in the Netherlands and abroad and conducts extensive research for external commissioning parties and funders. The research which enjoys a high profile both at home and internationally, has been accommodated in the multidisciplinary research institutes MESA+, CTIT and MIRA.

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