We are offering a

PhD Position - Synthesis Automation


Would you like to contribute to the energy transition in Germany through your work? Then the Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg (for Renewable Energy) (HI ERN) is the right place for you! The HI ERN forms the core of the close partnership between Forschungszentrum Jülich, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin for Materials and Energy, and Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg at the Erlangen site. The collaboration relates to the areas of innovative materials and processes for photovoltaic energy systems and hydrogen as a storage and carrier medium for CO2-neutral energy. Support us researching and developing solutions for the climate-neutral, sustainable, and cost-effective utilization of renewable energies. For more information on HI ERN and its main research areas, please visit https://www.hi-ern.de

Institute issuing the offer
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Your Job:

You will be part of the Novel Catalyst Design department, headed by Prof. Dr. Marc Ledendecker. The department focuses on the fabrication of metal-based, inorganic catalysts for the global energy transition. We use many different nanoparticles to fabricate highly active supported catalysts. This PhD thesis specifically focuses on automating the synthesis route of e.g. platinum based and iridium oxide based catalysts for acidic water splitting reaction as used in polymer electrolyte membrane units (e.g. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/aenm.202301450/ ). At the same time, you will have the opportunity to do your PhD at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) (incl. graduate school) and also to use the infrastructure of TUM. Your tasks in detail:

  • Automation of process steps in close cooperation with the electronics workshop and the mechanical workshop
  • Characterization of materials using physicochemical characterization methods such as XRD and XRF - Automation of the characterization
  • Analysis and automatic evaluation of the measurement results
  • Fabrication of inorganic nanostructured catalysts based on iridium and platinum in close collaboration with chemists - Preparation of presentations and project reports
  • Presentation of results at conferences and in scientific publications

Your Profile:

  • Excellent Master degree in engineering, chemistry, materials science, physics, electrochemistry or a similar discipline
  • Strong interest in automation of process steps (Python, LabView, or similar...)
  • Experience in one (or more) of the following areas is desirable: programming, automation, synthesis of inorganic materials, materials characterization, electrochemistry
  • Strong motivation to complete the PhD within 3 years
  • Very good organizational skills
  • Willingness to show initiative and the ability to work independently
  • Excellent cooperation and communication skills and the ability to work in a team
  • Very good oral and written English skills

Our Offer:

We work on highly socially relevant issues and offer you the opportunity to actively shape the change! We support you in your work through:

  • Excellent scientific and technical infrastructure for conducting high-quality research
  • Working with globally unique analytical measurement methods
  • International, interdisciplinary working environment on an attractive campus (FAU Südgelände) including many cooperation opportunities with partners from the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, the Forschungszentrum Jülich, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin, the TU München and from abroad
  • Graduate school of the TU Munich with many continuing education opportunities
  • A wide range of options for balancing work and family life
  • Flexible working hours and the possibility of mobile working
  • 30 days of vacation as well as all bridging days and between Christmas and New Year`s Day always off duty
  • Targeted services for international employees, e.g. through our International Advisory Service

The position is limited to 3 years. The remuneration is analogous to the remuneration group 13 (75%) of the collective agreement of the public service (TVöD-Bund) and additionally 60% of a monthly salary as special payment ("Christmas bonus").

Place of employment: Erlangen

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.

Last Modified: 14.11.2023