Pumped-Storage Hydropower Hydrodynamics

Simulation-Based Enhancement of Pumped-Storage Hydropower Hydrodynamics

Degree type


Closing date

27 March 2023



Citizenship requirement


About the research project

Increasing power generation from renewable energy has created a need for large-energy storage. Pumped storage hydropower offers a large scale energy storage solution with a high round-trip efficiency. This makes it very a useful technology in a rapidly developing energy market. Tasmania is well positioned in Australia to deliver pumped storage solutions with its abundance of water resources and mountainous terrain. An essential feature in all pumped storage hydropower systems is the capability to store and discharge water efficiently to minimise hydraulic losses. Advanced hydrodynamic design is critical in providing a responsive system for switching between generating and pumping modes while avoiding undesirable effects such as free surface vortices, surge waves, and unsteady machine loading. This project will use the advanced capabilities of computation fluid dynamics to simulate and optimise pumped-storage system hydraulics. Models will be developed to include dynamic effects in both closed and open channel flows. The project will also consider the operation of a shallow water reservoir, which enables wider options for site selection. This project will benefit the local renewable energy sector and assist in addressing a significant challenge for the Australian power sector.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Associate Professor Alan Henderson


Applicants will be considered for a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship or Tasmania Graduate Research Scholarship (TGRS) which, if successful, provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $31,500 per annum (2023 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

If successful, international applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.

As part of the application process you may indicate if you do not wish to be considered for scholarship funding.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Additional eligibility criteria specific to this project/scholarship:

  • Applicants must be able to undertake the project on-campus

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Additional essential selection criteria specific to this project:

  • A Bachelor of Engineering degree with honours or Bachelor of Science degree with honours

Application process

There is a three-step application process:

  1. Select your project, and check you meet the eligibility and selection criteria;
  2. Contact the Primary Supervisor, Associate Professor Alan Henderson to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. Submit an application by the closing date listed above.
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • As part of your application, you will be required to submit a covering letter, a CV including 2 x referees and your project research proposal.

Following the application closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

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