PDF - Electrical Material Characterization Studies on Power Cable Dielectric Materials subjected to Thermal Aging - ON-106

Preferred Disciplines and Level: Electrical Engineering, Engineering Physics, Applied Physics or Materials Science. Post-Doc or Existing Ph.D. Student.
Company: Kinectrics. inc.
Project Length: (8 – 12 Months) 
Desired start date: As soon as possible
Location: Waterloo, ON and Toronto, ON. 
No. of Positions: 1
Preferences: Applicants are applying to hold a Post-Doctoral Fellowship position with Dr. Shesha Jayaram, (Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Waterloo) to work on a collaborative research project with Kinectrics Inc. Language: English

About the Company: 

Kinectrics Inc. is a leading Canadian provider of innovative science and engineering services to the Energy Sector. Kinectrics’ over 300 engineers, scientists and technologists apply advanced problem solving expertise to improve business performance, specializing in power generation (nuclear, hydro and fossil), transmission, distribution, industrial energy services, and environmental technologies.  Kinectrics uniquely has an extensive suite of up to date laboratories/facilities serving clients in both North America and around the globe.

Project Description:

The work to be conducted within this Post-Doctoral Fellowship (PDF) will generally consist of electrical dielectric characterization studies on small-scale samples prepared from low voltage (LV) and medium voltage (MV) polymeric cables utilized in power generation and distribution applications.  The samples will be subjected to varying degrees of thermal aging. The work will be conducted as as part of an overall applied R&D study to discriminate, localize and condition assess thermal aging related defects in polymeric cable systems using terminal electrical diagnostics. 

Research Objectives:​

  • Improve the fundamental understanding of influence of varying thermal aging and environmental conditions on electrical properties for a variety of dielectric materials (and sub-components) commonly utilized in LV and MV polymeric cables
  • Explore links between electrical material properties and corresponding physical/chemical diagnostic markers with respect to thermal aging on studied materials
  • Generate data to derive empirical formulations for electrical material parameters for use in physics and analytically based simulation studies (DC, Low Frequency (LF), High Frequency (HF))
  • Provide direct empirical data to form benchmark experimental cases for use in physics and analytically based simulation studies (DC, LF, HF)


  • Provide support to polymeric material thermal aging experiments, if required
  • Assist in preparation of small-scale polymeric samples for dielectric characterization experiments
  • Develop test set-ups for and execute dielectric characterization experiments on small-scale polymeric samples, under varying environmental conditions – will include all or a sub-set of DC (polarization / depolarization, time domain dielectric spectroscopy), low frequency AC (frequency domain dielectric spectroscopy), high frequency AC experiments (broadband impedance spectroscopy, S-Parameters) and pulse experiments (time domain transmission/reflectometry)
  • Provide support to physical/chemical dielectric characterization experiments, if required
  • Study influence of environmental conditions (temperature, humidity) on the measured properties
  • Support the advanced analysis of data / extraction of metrics from data obtained from above experiments

Expertise and Skills Needed:

    • Understanding of theory associated with polymeric dielectric materials
    • Understanding of applied mathematics associated with analysis of data from dielectric response studies in time or frequency domain
    • Experience utilizing and programming in mathematical and scientific graphing software (e.g. MATLAB, Origin), for experimental data analysis
    • Preferred: Hands-on experience with electrical measurement instrumentation for dielectric characterization studies
    • Preferred: Hands-on experience with laboratory dielectric material studies (including experimental set-up development, trouble-shooting, measurement sensitivity assessments etc.)
    • Preferred: Overall familiarity with physical/chemical characterization studies on polymeric materials


    For more info or to apply to this applied research position, please

    1. Check your eligibility and find more information about open projects.

    2. Complete this webform. You will be asked to upload your CV. Remember to indicate the title of the project(s) you are interested in and obtain your professor’s approval to proceed.

    3. If interested, applicants can send their CV and application through the webform, or contact Ashley Hannon, Business Development Specialist, ahannon(a)mitacs.ca directly.

    4. The successful PhD student or PDF will be working under the supervision of Dr. Shesha Jayaram, in the department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Waterloo.