High Voltage Engineering

​Note! No new admissions are made to this graduate school!
The graduate school is organised within the Department of Electrical Engineering.


Director of Graduate Studies: Yuriy Serdyuk


(approved by the Pro-Vice-President on November 22, 2005. Ref. nr. C2005/1199)
(revised August 14, 2007)
(revised December 13, 2012)

Regarding older syllabus, please contact the first vice/vice head of department.

The Graduate School in High Voltage Engineering (GSHVE) is a common graduate school and a platform for higher education in high voltage engineering between:

  • Institutionen för material- och tillverkningsteknik, Chalmers tekniska högskola (Chalmers)
  • Ångströmlaboratoriet, Uppsala Universitet (UU)
  • Institutionen för elektrotekniska system, Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (KTH)
  • High Voltage Valley, Ludvika (HVV)

The purpose of establishing the GSHVE is to strengthen and increase the critical mass of post-graduate education in high voltage engineering, to improve access to experimental facilities and to facilitate networking among researchers, PhD students and engineers. The cooperating parties in this post-graduate school together have access to laboratory facilities of world class.

General rules for graduate programmes are issued at each university where PhD students belong. This document supplements these rules with subject-specific requirements and recommendations within the GSHVE.

1 Subject Description and Educational Aims

The subject High Voltage Engineering (HVE) deals with the physical behaviour of equipment and systems for production, transmission and use of electrical energy, and also with construction and characteristics of these equipment and systems. Non-power applications of high voltages are also included. Usually questions related to electrical insulation and processes that take place in electric power systems at operating voltages and overvoltages are of primary interest. This includes studies and modeling of material properties in electric fields, material ageing, discharges and breakdown in gases, liquids, solids and complicated insulating systems (multi-phase systems). Also modern high voltage measuring techniques together with testing and diagnostics of different components and apparatus are of importance. The research has mainly an experimental character, supported by theoretical modelling, and could be of both a knowledge-broadening nature as well as of a development nature.

The education aims at giving genuine knowledge in the subject, providing training in scientific methodology and admitting training in presenting work performed, orally as well as in written form. In addition, after completion of the education the former post-graduate student should be well prepared for an independent profession as engineer, project leader, researcher, teacher or administrative investigator within different spheres of activities of the society.

2 Requirements for Admission

The general admission rules established by the individual university must be followed. Students who have a Master of Science degree (civilingenjör), or equivalent (but at least corresponding to 160p), in a subject suitable for the chosen research project and furthermore have the deemed capacity to complete the education are eligible for admission as graduate students in HVE.

3 Organisation and Aim of the Programme of Study

The education for obtaining the Doctor Degree (teknologie eller filosofie doktor) normally requires four years of full-time studies, while the Licentiate Degree (teknologie eller filosofie licentiat) requires two years. The education consists of a course part and a thesis part. 

During the first year, the purpose is to broaden the knowledge within the field theoretically as well as experimentally and to deepen the studies in one or several parts of the specialization chosen. It is also recommended to establish a base in pedagogy and information retrieval. Depending on the background of the post-graduate student it might be necessary to follow supplementing courses, such as basic electric power engineering and high voltage engineering, electromagnetic field theory, etc.

In the subsequent years the specialisation continues both within the particular research topic chosen but also within general high voltage engineering. A broadening within electric power engineering is recommended, especially for those who do not have this background.

Seminars and workshops are to be arranged where PhD students can share their research results with other students and researchers. At these occasions, also industry representatives are invited, thus constituting a forum for discussions of new results and a quality assessment of work performed.

4 Courses

Different categories of courses exist: (i) general compulsory courses specified by rules of the individual university, (ii) subject-specific courses offered by the GSHVE and (iii) other courses.

At Chalmers doctoral students admitted after September 1 2012 are required to take 15 credit points from the area of Generic and Transferable Skills during their post-graduate studies. Of these, 9 credit points are mandatory for the licentiate degree and another 6 credit points for the PhD degree.

In addition to the courses within Generic and Transferable Skills, the student is also required to participate in an introduction day for doctoral students (before the licentiate examination at the latest). Further requirements are an oral popular science presentation to be performed prior to the PhD thesis defence and a written popular science presentation to be published on the back of the PhD thesis.

Presently the GSHVE offers the following courses belonging to the second category (ii):

Chemistry, physics and diagnostics of electrical insulation materials, 7.5 higher education credits, Chalmers
Discharge physics, 8 higher education credits, KTH
Electromagnetic compatibility, 7.5 higher education credits, KTH
Graduate course in electrotechnical design, 7.5-30 higher education credits, KTH
High Voltage Engineering, 7.5 higher education credits, Chalmers
High Voltage Technology, 7.5 higher education credits, Chalmers
Applied computational electromagnetics, 7.5 higher education credits, Chalmers
Material science; structure and properties, 7.5 higher education credits, Chalmers
Powerformer technology, 7.5 higher education credits, UU

These courses are given every second or third year, depending on recruitment situation, i.e. number of available students. Students belonging to the GSHVE shall, in order to fulfil the special requirements of the graduate school, follow at least 30 higher education credits of the school courses for the Doctor Degree and at least 15 higher education credits for the Licentiate Degree.

Courses belonging to the third category (iii) are chosen by the PhD student in consultation with his/her examiner.

Examples of such courses are relevant graduate courses in electric power engineering, courses with direct connection to the research topic, etc. Courses in this category can be conducted as specially designed literature courses.

5 Dissertation

The subject for the dissertation is decided in consultation with the examiner and the main supervisor not later than two semesters after the start of the studies. The work is presented continually at seminars and by written reports. The dissertation can be presented as a monograph or as a summary of several published reports put together. The graduate's own contributions should be described in such a way that they could be clearly distinguishable. Formal procedures should meet the demands of individual university.

5.1 Licentiate Thesis

The thesis should deal with a problem that is possible to solve in a scientific way. The work should result in a thesis of such a quality that after revision it can be published internationally and be presented at an international conference.

5.2  Doctoral Dissertation

The dissertation should be of such a quality that it could be accepted for publication in an international scientific journal of high standard.

6 Requirements for Degrees

6.1 Licentiate

The licentiate studies should correspond to two years of full-time studies (120 higher education credits). In order to get the degree it is required that the student

  • has passed tests on the courses required, corresponding to at least 30 higher education credits,
  • has orally presented the thesis, corresponding to 90 higher education credits, in a public seminar and got it approved by the examiner.

6.2 Doctor

For the Doctoral Degree the graduate courses and seminars should correspond to four years of full-time studies (240 higher education credits). To get the degree it is required that the student

  • has passed the tests on the courses required, corresponding to at least 60 higher education credits,
  • has defended the dissertation, corresponding to 180 higher education credits, in public and got it approved by the examination committee.

7 Supervision of Post-graduate Studies

The post-graduate student is entitled to supervision. Instructions and recommendations for this are usually issued locally at each university. The supervision varies in accordance with the art of the research work. The main supervisor and the post-graduate student, together and in consultation with the examiner shall set up an individual syllabus. The individual syllabus must clearly state the demands on the post-graduate student and the main supervisor. This syllabus must comply with both the rules of the individual university as well as the rules of the GSHVE.

8 Examination on Course Work

Tests on the course work may be written or oral, in accordance with decisions made by the examiner.

9 Additional Information

As the research subject High Voltage Engineering is of an obviously applied and directed nature, it is often performed in close cooperation to the electrical power industries and/or manufacturers of high voltage systems and components. Therefore the goal for the postgraduate studies, i.e. the Licentiate Degree or the Doctor of Technology/Philosophy Degree, should preferably be decided on at the beginning of the studies. ​

Page manager Published: Thu 15 Jul 2021.