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Research profile

Theo Hofman is an Associate Professor and (Graduate) Program Director (Automotive Systems, MSc Automotive Technology, EngD Autmotive and Mechatronics Systems Design) at the Mechanical Engineering Department at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). His research focus is on developing integrated design methods that provide system-wide solutions for complex dynamic engineering systems. This research incorporates several related fields for efficient design space exploration and optimal system design: automated computational design synthesis for discrete topology design (system architecture generation); machine learning, data science and constraint programming techniques; integrated plant and control design (codesign) using model-based approaches and optimization theory. Current example applications are high-tech powertrain systems (e-machines, fuel cells, engines, transmissions, batteries, thermal management systems, controls, etc.) for the automotive (cars, trucks, buses, machinery equipment), maritime (tugs, work boats, ferries), and aerospace engineering (drones, planes) field and advanced energy charging infrastructures (e-trucks, e-ships, e-planes). Results are new computer-aided engineering methods, state-of-art (low-/high-level) control designs and software tools for product design making complex products affordable and in a reduced amount of time.

Academic background

Theo Hofman received his MSc (with honors) in 1999 and his PhD in 2007 both in Mechanical Engineering from TU/e. From 1999 to 2003, he was a researcher, project manager with the R&D Department of Thales–Cryogenics B.V. (Space, Defense), Eindhoven. From 2003 to 2007, he was a researcher, project manager at Drivetrain Innovations B.V. (Punch Powertrain N.V., 2013+), Eindhoven. From 2007 to 2009, he was post-doctoral fellow with the Control Systems Technology group. In addition, he is a Senior Contact (2009+) at the Modélisation Énergétique et Gestion d’Énergie des Véhicules Hybrides et électriques (MEGEVH) group, a French network on Hybrid Electric Vehicles. Theo has worked as Invited Professor at the ETH Zurich (2009-2010) and  l'Université Polytechnique Hauts-de-France (2011, 2014, 2018), Int. Program (2004-2006, 2014) and Standing Committee member (2014+) of the IEEE Vehicle, Propulsion and Power Conference, Technical Program Committee member and Special session co-chair of IEEE VPPC11/VPPC14, co-chair IEEE Best Paper Award VPPC14/VPPC15, Guest Editor IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology (2015) and is an Associate Editor of the Int. J. of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (2006+), SAE Int. J. of Alternative Powertrains (2015+), Int. J. of Vehicle Performance (2015+),  Editor of Vehicles (MDPI, 2018+), Guest Editor WEVA (2018), Editor IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology (2018+). He has successfully supervised over >104 MSc graduation, >14 PDEng, >10 PhD projects.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action


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