PhD position in the field of atomic-scale electrical characterisation by electron microscopy

As a member of the Helmholtz Association, Forschungszentrum Jülich makes an effective contribution to solving major challenges facing society in the fields of information, energy, and bioeconomy. It focuses on varied tasks in the area of research management and utilizes large, often unique, scientific infrastructure. Come and work with around 6,100 colleagues across a range of topics and disciplines at one of Europe's largest research centres.

The Ernst Ruska-Centre (ER-C) for Microscopy and Spectroscopy with Electrons at Forschungszentrum Jülich is a national facility dedicated to research at the frontiers of electron microscopy and materials science. In cooperation with the RWTH Aachen University it hosts up-to-date infrastructure including worldwide unique aberration-corrected electron microscopes. The moreSTEM research Group lead by Prof. Dr. Knut Müller-Caspary at ER-C is looking for a team member to perform cutting-edge subatomic-resolution electron microscopy on 2D materials.

The moreSTEM research team at ER-C is looking for a
PhD position in the field of atomic-scale electrical characterisation by electron microscopy

Activities and responsibilities

  • you will perform experiments with state-of-the-art aberration-corrected low-voltage STEM machines equipped with ultrafast cameras to record 4D STEM data of several 2D materials
  • by accompanying simulations, you will study the effects of bonding across prominent defects, especially with respect to detectability as a function of electron dose and residual aberrations
  • in close cooperation with research groups at the RWTH Aachen University who perform the electrical transport measurements, you will investigate the materials of choice, such as graphene, hBN, transition metal dichalcogenides (e.g. WSe2 MoS2)
  • you will conduct in-situ biasing experiments at 2D materials heterostructure devices to study the distribution of electric fields and charges under external bias
  • besides the advancement the high-precision mapping of atomic-scale charges brings to the field of nanotechnology, your work will enhance the general understanding of the electrical properties in low-dimensional systems significantly from the fundamental physics point of view
  • this PhD is supposed to play a key role in the methodological development of the very recent momentum-resolved STEM technique, which has the potential to overcome several long-standing challenges in solid-state physics via the principle of multidimensionality, i.e. the combination of real- and diffraction space details at unprecedented resolution and sampling

Qualification profile

  • Master´s degree in physics
  • a background and strong interest in solid-state theory, and/or experiences in electron microscopy are desirable
  • programming experience in, e.g. Matlab
  • experience with 2D materials are beneficial
  • fluent command of written and spoken English
  • most importantly: enthusiasm to explore uncharted territory, develop and follow your own ideas
  • ability to work autonomously in close interaction within a team

We offer

  • outstanding computing facilities and partly unique aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopes equipped with ultrafast detectors of the latest generation
  • a highly motivated working group as part of an international and interdisciplinary working environment at one of Europe’s largest research establishments
  • continuous scientific mentoring by your scientific advisor as well as feedback and expertise in the multiple facets of electron microscopy and materials science
  • opportunity of participating in (international) conferences and project meetings
  • participation in overarching seminars including certificate
  • further development of your personal strengths, e.g. via a comprehensive further training programme
  • pay in line with 50% of pay group 13 of the Collective Agreement for the Public Service (TVöD-Bund), higher payment may be possible upon skills
  • information on employment as a PhD student at Forschungszentrum Jülich can be found here
  • usually a contract for the duration of 3 years
Further information on the project is available at:

We also welcome applications from disabled persons.

Send application to

We look forward to receiving your application, preferably via our online recruitment system on our career site, quoting the reference number 2019D-188.

Questions about the vacancy?
Contact us by mentioning the
reference number 2019D-188:

Please note that for technical reasons
we cannot accept applications via e-mail.

Bitte beziehen Sie sich bei Ihrer Bewerbung auf jobvector und geben Sie die folgende Referenznummer an: 2019D-188

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Das Forschungszentrum Jülich leistet als Mitglied der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft wirksame Beiträge zur Lösung großer gesellschaftlicher Herausforderungen in den Bereichen Information, Energie und Bioökonomie. Es bearbeitet vielfältige Aufgaben im Forschungsmanagement und nutzt große, oft einzigartige wissenschaftliche Infrastrukturen. Arbeiten Sie zusammen mit rund 5.900 Kolleginnen und Kollegen...
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