Call for Doctorate (Ph.D.) proposals open June 15, 2015
The First MELiSSA Call for Doctorate Proposals is closed
Background and objectives
The European Space Agency (ESA), an international organization with 22 Member States (www.esa.int), is Europe’s gateway to space. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.
Targeted Areas of Research
The MELISSA project (Micro-Ecological Life Support Alternative) has been initiated with the objective develop regenerative life support systems for long term space missions. The main objective of the project is to design and engineer an artificial environment allowing ideally 100% of recycling of waste to produce oxygen, water and food utilizing a combination of waste processing compartments colonized by specific microorganisms or plants. Such an ambitious objective comes with challenges among them the highly multidisciplinary approach and the very long term research. Due to its nature and principal objectives the MELiSSA project requires a strong strategic vision on the interaction between different processes as well as between research institutes.
In order to reinforce this interaction as well as the continuity of the research, national delegations, external audits as well as MELiSSA institutes have recommended to organize a Pool of MELiSSA PhDs, abbreviated: the POMP program. The POMP program is set up to attract students belonging to the faculties of Sciences, Engineering and Agronomy (Bioengineering). The main objective is to organize a European competition for MELiSSA PhDs candidates, over six countries: Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Ireland, Italy and Romania.
Please note that candidates can be from any country in the world. The hosting university hoewever must be located in one of the above POMP countries.
The POMP program and fund is managed by the MELiSSA Foundation. The MELiSSA Foundation will also leverage the POMP program by involving the Ph.D. students in ‘team events’ such as the MELiSSA summer university, the yearly MELiSSA meeting and the COSPAR conference. COSPAR is the major biannual conference on Space research. For more information see COSPAR.
To be admitted to the POMP PhD program, candidates must:
- hold a university degree equivalent to a master's degree with a focus in the same subject as the intended field of study.
- have a good command of English and of the working language of the university you plan to do your PhD.
Further specific admission requirements may be set by the department that has advertised the position.
Proposal Submission Process
To enroll in the POMP program, candidates should submit their application following the information written in the call for applications.
What the foundation finances
- stipends or PhD salary in case the student is employed by the university
- bench fees
- academic enrollment fees
- certain travel expenses
Please note that a certain extent of co-financing by the university is required in most cases.
Please also note that the Foundation does NOT finance more than 5% overhead in the event the student is directly employed directly by the host university. Applications without overhead are treated on a priority basis.
How to apply
Applicants have to:
1. follow the instructions provided;
2. fill in the forms providing the requested information and email the documents as pdf file only;
3. pay € 20.00 (administration fee). This fee will be refunded to all applicants who are invited for an interview.
Please transfer the administration fee using the following information:
MELiSSA Foundation PS
IBAN: BE50 3631 3283 9318
Different documents are available for download to help to prepare a proposal to this call:
1. list of MELiSSA partners (with keywords about their activities) which will collaborate with the University departments interested in the call.
2. list of main MELiSSA publications
3. document stating how to prepare a PhD proposal
4. list of research themes proposed by the MELiSSA partners that could serve as discussion base with the hosting Universities
Please consult the download section