Doctoral Position in the area of charge transfer at interfaces
University of Freiburg, Cluster of Excellence Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems (livMatS)

Doctoral Position in the area of charge transfer at interfaces


Consider making the switch to the University of Freiburg: It is one of the most renowned and strongest research universities in Germany, with a history spanning more than 500 years. You'll engage in top-notch research and teaching with a unique spectrum of disciplines, perspectives, and people - right in the heart of one of Germany's most beautiful cities.
The University of Freiburg's human resources policy is oriented toward the principles of equal opportunity and diversity. The university is committed to the goal of creating a family-friendly university.


The Cluster of Excellence Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems (livMatS) is offering a

Doctoral Position in the area of charge transfer at interfaces

Part-time position (65 %), Start-date: 22.02.2019


The Cluster of Excellence livMatS develops completely novel, bioinspired materials systems that adapt autonomously to various environments and harvest clean energy from their surroundings. The intention of these purely technical – yet in a behavioral sense quasi-living – materials systems is to meet the demands of humans with regard to pioneering environmental and energy technologies. The societal relevance of autonomous systems and their sustainability will thus play an important role in their development. The research program of livMatS is characterized by highly interdisciplinary collaboration between researchers from a broad range of fields including engineering, chemistry, physics, biology, psychology, the humanities, and sustainability sciences.


Charge transfer at interfaces is a central topic in the livMatS project Interfaces, charge-transfer and non-adiabatic processes and their exploitation in a frequency-tunable tribogenerator. We will employ electronic structure calculations to investigate the relevant interfacial transport properties. The main topic will be the elucidation of the working principles of tribogenerators, where the calculations shall unravel the electrification of the contacting interfaces. Different hypotheses for the origins of charge separation will be explored within electronic structure calculations in the ground-state of the material as well as in excited state investigations.


Charge transfer over complex interfaces is also of high importance in the project Inorganic and Organic SolStore, where solar energy conversion and storage will be combined within the same material. Here, junctions between organic and inorganic/metallic and semi-metallic regions will determine the overall device performance. Their structural, electronic and optical properties will be investigated with density-functional theory. Tuning of molecular properties e. g. through optimized Fermi level alignment will reveal the optimal choice of the organic phases and in this way guide their synthesis. The effect of different anchor groups and substituents will be screened. Predicted optical- and electrochemical properties will be contrasted with the experimental observations of WPO1 to obtain insights into the origins of the spectral features observed.


Applicants should have a M.Sc. in physics, chemistry, materials science or related disciplines. Knowledge of a scientific programming language (e.g. Python) is required and experience with high performance computing is a plus but not mandatory. Willingness to integrate into larger software development projects and to work closely with experimentalists is mandatory.


Please hand in:

  • Letter of intent detailing why you are interested in this specific project and how your previous research qualifies you for the project (up to 1,500 words)
  • Curriculum Vitae with list of publications (if applicable)
  • Certified copies of your university degree(s) with grades (Bachelor and Master certificate / Diploma certificate and transcript)
  • Short summary of your Master’s thesis (up to 1,000 words)
  • Work sample (chapter from recent thesis or journal article, up to 5,000 words)
  • Suggestion of two referees with contact details

Your documents will not be returned after the application process. For this reason, please submit copies only.

The position is limited to 21.02.2022. The salary will be determined in accordance with TV-L E13.

We are particularly pleased to receive applications from women for the position advertised here.


Please send in a complete and convincing application the above-mentioned supporting documents including the reference number 00000307, by date 03.02.2019 at the latest. Please send your application to the following address in written or electronic form:


Albert-Ludwigs-University of Freiburg 
Dr. Monika Schulz 
Freiburg Center for Interactive Materials and Bioinspired Technologies (FIT) 
Georges-Köhler-Allee 105 
D-79110 Freiburg, Germany 
Password: livMatS 

E-Mail : one -on-one: AND Michael Michael.Walter @

For further information, please contact Dr. Michael Walter on the phone number +49 761 203-95072 or E-Mail


General and legal remarks:
Full-time positions may generally be split up into two or more part-time positions, provided that there are no formal or legal barriers. Candidates are selected in accordance with the provisions of the AGG (Allgemeines Gleichbehandlungsgesetz - German General Equal Treatment Act).

Applicants with disabilities (Schwerbehinderte Menschen) will be given preferential consideration in case of equal qualification.

The department offering the position is liable for the content of this job posting. Textual errors do not constitute a basis for any claims or rights. The relevant human resources department has sole responsibility for all legal transactions made within the context of the selection and hiring process.

Please note that breaches in privacy and unauthorized access by third parties cannot be excluded in communication by unencrypted email.

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