Postdoctoral Fellowship – Multiphysics Modelling of Solid-State Hydrogen Storage

Posting Expiry

16 August 2019 - 12:00am


As one of the world's leading universities, The University of British Columbia creates an exceptional learning environment that fosters global citizenship, advances a civil and sustainable society, and supports outstanding research to serve the people of British Columbia, Canada and the world. The School of Engineering invites you to join us in achieving UBC's vision.

Position description

Dr. Joshua Brinkerhoff of the UBC School of Engineering and UBC Okanagan Computational Fluid Dynamics Laboratory invites applicants for a funded Postdoctoral Fellowship position in the area of Multiphysics Modelling of Solid-State Hydrogen Storage, with a specific focus on modelling heat/mass/momentum transport during filling/dispensing of a novel solid-state hydrogen storage technology. The research is in collaboration with Hydrogen in Motion (, a start-up company developing novel solid-state hydrogen storage technologies.

The position is open to applicants with a PhD in mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, physics, or a related discipline. Applicants with interests in fluid mechanics, heat/mass transfer, computational fluid mechanics (CFD), and porous media are particularly encouraged to apply. The successful candidates will be required to work independently and must communicate well in English. Evidence of high-impact publications is an asset. This position is available to Canadian citizens, permanent residents of Canada, and international applicants. It is expected that successful candidates will commence from September 1, 2019. The position will be for a term of 12 months, and is renewable on an annual basis pending available funding and satisfactory research progress.

Project description

Hydrogen in Motion (H2M) is a BC-based start-up that has developed a novel technology for storing gaseous hydrogen at low pressure but at higher volumetric energy density than compressed hydrogen gas. The storage technology is based on surface adsorption of hydrogen to a newly-developed, proprietary nanomaterial. At present, H2M’s technology is limited to 100 g of hydrogen in lab-scale storage coupons. Therefore, in order to achieve industrially-relevant storage volumes, the technology needs to be scaled up. In particular, two critical challenges will be addressed: (1) real-time monitoring of the adsorbed mass in the storage material; (2) transport of heat and mass inside the storage container during hydrogen charging and discharging. Relating to (1), the postdoctoral fellow will conduct compressible gas-dynamics simulations of the charging process with conjugate heat transfer to develop a real-time model of the hydrogen conditions in the chamber. Relating to (2), the postdoctoral fellow develop a numerical model to predict the thermal, flow, and mass transfer processes during charging of hydrogen into a packed bed of storage nanomaterial powder. The research will involve derivation of the appropriate physical basis for the models, numerical solution, and interpretation of the model results. The postdoctoral fellow will work directly with H2M researchers to conduct experimental validation and interface the work with existing theoretical models. The project promises to produce high-impact journal papers, conference papers, and patentable technology.

Training and professional development

Candidates will receive high-quality formal and informal training in the following areas: (1) applied heat and mass transfer modelling; (2) computational fluid dynamics; (3) surface physics; (4) high performance computing. Candidates will have opportunities to participate in peer-reviewed publications as well as present at national and international conferences. Candidates will participate in mentorship and leadership activities within Dr. Brinkerhoff’s research group, and will receive direct career development opportunities.

Application procedure

Candidates are asked to submit:

  • A detailed curriculum vitae highlighting their educational and professional achievements
  • A letter of reference addressing their fit to the project description
  • A list of three professional and/or academic references
  • (Optionally) Samples of relevant academic publications

Interested candidates should send the above documents and direct queries to Dr. Joshua Brinkerhoff ( Additional information of Dr. Brinkerhoff’s research is available from his research webpage:

UBC hires on the basis of merit and is strongly committed to equity and diversity within its community. We especially welcome applications from visible minority group members, women, Aboriginal persons, persons with disabilities, persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities, and others with the skills and knowledge to productively engage with diverse communities.