Post-doc and PhD position for Discovering new Catalysts in the Cluster-Nanoparticle Transition Regime DTU Physics

Post-doc and PhD position for Discovering new Catalysts in the Cluster-Nanoparticle Transition Regime

DTU Physics

Apply no later than 15 October 2017

Apply for the job at DTU Physics by completing the following form.


Apply online


The positions are Funded by the European Research Council under the advanced grant scheme (ERC-ADV). The overarching aim of this project is to provide new catalysts that may facilitate efficient sustainable energy conversion and thereby help phasing out fossil fuels. The position is at SurfCat which is also leading the “The Villum Center for the Science of Sustainable Fuels and Chemicals” (V-SUSTAIN).

The Post-doc will work with installing and then using a new UHV-compatible dual magnetron cluster machine using time-of-flight mass selection arriving early spring 2018 (technical staff will assist installation). This is being connected to an already existing UHV system equipped with an Århus-STM, XPS, TPD, ISS and fast entry lock system allowing for careful characterization of clusters and nanoparticles deposited on various support materials. The sample transfer system is based on the omicron design. We already have extended experience with such setup, but this new dual magnetron will allow us to produce small entities of oxides, nitrides, sulphides, and phosphides where some of the atoms are replaced with another metal, hopefully allowing for breaking the scaling relations and finding new and efficient catalysts. The produced clusters will be tested in other parts of our laboratory in relation to sustainable energy conversion reactions like electrochemical HER, OER, ORR, CO2RR, NRR as well as thermal catalytic reactions such as production of alcohols from CO2 and H2. The catalytic testing is done as a collaborative effort since this post-doc is expected to be more focused on the surface science aspect of this process.

The PhD-student will become party of the above project and will during his/her Phd obtain extended experience in surface science and fundamental aspects of catalysis. 

Qualifications of Post-doc 

The successful candidate is well-motivated, hardworking and willing and able to work as part of a team. The candidate is expected to have a PhD degree in Physics, but candidates with appropriate background and a PhD in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or Materials Science will also be considered. It is absolutely mandatory that the candidate has extensive experience working with UHV-systems/methods and experience with clusters/nanoparticles is naturally highly desirable.

Qualifications of PhD-student

The successful candidates will have obtained excellent grades in his/her Bachelor and Master’s degrees. He/she should also be well-motivated, hardworking and willing and able to work as part of a team. Candidates for the PhD positions should have a Master’s degree in Physics, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or Materials Science by the time they commence the project.

Approval and Enrolment of PhD Students 

The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes of DTU, for example in Mathematics, Physics and Informatics. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.   

Salary and appointment terms 

The appointment terms of the Postdoc will be based on the collective agreement with the Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed with the relevant union. The period of employment is 2 years.

The salary and appointment terms for the PhD positions are consistent with the current rules for PhD degree students. The period of employment is 3 years. The PhD thesis must be delivered in during this period. The position is available from start of 2018 or later.

Further information 

For further information about the research at SurfCat at the Department of Physics at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) please inspect 

Should you have any queries regarding the positions, please contact Professor Ib Chorkendorff, or Assistant Professor Jakob Kibsgaard


Please submit your online application no later than 15 October 2017. Applications must be submitted as one PDF filecontaining all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include: 

  • A cover letter motivating the application. (Max one page)

  • A curriculum vitae

  • A list of publications

  • Copies of BSc, MSc and PhD degree diplomas

  • For PhD applicants only: Mandatory excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and excel spreadsheet here)

  • Names and e-mail addresses or telephone numbers of min. 2 references.


Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master's or PhD degree, but cannot begin before having received it.

All interested candidates, irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background, are encouraged to apply.

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 5,800 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 10,600 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.

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