We are looking to recruit a

PhD Position - Scanning tunneling microscopy of exotic quantum phenomena in van der Waals heterostructures


Van der Waals heterostructures allow the engineering of exotic quantum states, which are otherwise not found in nature, and have become a research focus of the German Research Foundation (DFG). Using our developed cutting-edge sample fabrication techniques [Nat. Phys. 16, 526 (2020), Adv. Mater. Interfaces 2300658 (2023)], we combine different materials and tune their relative twist-angle to explore unconventional superconductivity in van der Waals heterostructures, which we analyze by scanning tunneling microscopy. Our goal is the fundamental understanding of potential material platforms for topological quantum computing, which holds great promises for future applications and to society in general. Open positions are available in the Quantum Nanoscience department of the Peter Grünberg Institute - Quantum Nanoscience (PGI-3) (https://www.fz-juelich.de/en/pgi/pgi-3) and are supported by the DFG’s Emmy Noether Programme (https://blogs.helmholtz.de/research-field-information/en/2023/08/08/2731).

Institute issuing the offer
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Your Job:

We look for excellent candidates who are interested in experimental work on van der Waals heterostructures for the engineering and characterization of exotic superconducting phases. Heterostructures will be fabricated on-site and studied in our state-of-the-art scanning tunneling microscopes.

Your primary scientific tasks will be:

  • Ultra-low temperature (≤1 K) scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy characterization of van der Waals heterostructures
  • Exfoliation of van der Waals materials and assembly of heterostructures
  • Optical and/or electron beam lithographic patterning of samples
  • Work in an international group environment
  • Collaboration with internal and external project partners
  • Preparation of scientific publications and presentations
  • Participation in conferences in Germany and abroad
  • Training and mentoring of students

Your Profile:

  • Masters degree in Physics with excellent grades
  • Fluent in written and spoken English
  • High degree of independence and commitment
  • Analytic problem solving capabilities and creativity
  • Reliable and thorough working style
  • Hands-on lab experience
  • Programming experience (Python), for scripting and data analysis

Our Offer:

We work on the very latest issues that impact our society and are offering you the chance to actively help in shaping the change! We offer ideal conditions for you to complete your doctoral degree:

  • Cutting-edge low temperature scanning probe microscopes and vast knowledge in related techniques, embedded in an outstanding scientific and technical infrastructure
  • State-of-the-art van der Waals heterostructure fabrication in our labs
  • A highly motivated working group and international working environment in one of Europe’s largest research centers
  • Work in a quantum computing research environment, a field that promises significant investment from private and governmental funding agencies over the next decades
  • Helmholtz Nanofacility: State-of-the-art cleanroom facility
  • Ernst Ruska-Centre for Microscopy and Spectroscopy with Electrons
  • Continuous scientific mentoring by your scientific advisor
  • Early exposure to international collaborations and conferences
  • Dr. rer. Nat. / PhD dissertation at University of Cologne and potential membership of the Ju-Docs graduate center at Jülich and the Bonn-Cologne Graduate School, with all their offers
  • A large research campus with green spaces, offering the best possible means for networking with colleagues and pursuing sports alongside work
  • Further development of your personal strengths, e.g. through an extensive range of training courses; a structured program of continuing education and networking opportunities specifically for doctoral researchers via JuDocS, the Jülich Center for Doctoral Researchers and Supervisors: https://www.fz-juelich.de/en/judocs
  • Targeted services for international employees, e.g. through our International Advisory Service

The position is for a fixed term of 3 years. Pay in line with 65% of pay group 13 of the Collective Agreement for the Public Service (TVöD-Bund) and additionally 60 % of a monthly salary as special payment („Christmas bonus“).Further information on doctoral degrees at Forschungszentrum Jülich including our other locations is available at: https://www.fz-juelich.de/gp/Careers_Docs

In addition to exciting tasks and a collaborative working atmosphere at Jülich, we have a lot more to offer: https://go.fzj.de/benefits

We welcome applications from people with diverse backgrounds, e.g. in terms of age, gender, disability, sexual orientation / identity, and social, ethnic and religious origin. A diverse and inclusive working environment with equal opportunities in which everyone can realize their potential is important to us.

We look forward to receiving your application. The job will be advertised until the position has been successfully filled. You should therefore submit your application as soon as possible.

Apply now

Questions about the offer?

Please feel free to contact us via our contact form.
Please note that for technical reasons we cannot accept applications by e-mail.

You can find helpful information on the application and selection process here. You can also find answers to frequently asked questions in our FAQs.

Last Modified: 30.11.2023