Doctoral Position in the area of Polymer Physics

Doctoral Position in the area of Polymer Physics

Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet Freiburg

Freiburg, Germany

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

The Cluster of Excellence Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems

(livMatS) is offering a

Doctoral Position in the area of Polymer Physics

Part-time position (65 %), Start-date: 01.04.2019

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.

New design principles for molecular building blocks with faster response times on all scales are required for future material systems. Therefore, the mechanical response of the respective molecular building blocks has to be characterized, ideally by mapping the complete relevant energy landscape. Furthermore, the way molecular properties translate to the mesoscale and macroscale is crucial. In particular, the nanomechanical properties will be compared to the mechanical response of macroscopic systems (e.g. self-assemblies or hydrogels).

In this PhD-project AFM-based single molecule force spectroscopy will be used to determine the nanomechanical response of the molecular building blocks. Then, the nanomechanical response of crosslinker systems will be tested in a direction dependent way. Next, AFM-based frequency-dependent nanomechanical characterization of hydrogels and elastomers built from these materials will be done and supported by a combined AFM and fluorescence microscopy approach. In addition, the (self-)assembly processes of molecular building blocks will be imaged down to the timescale of seconds with nanometer precision using high-speed AFM imaging.

Applicants should have a M.Sc. in physics, biophysics, physical chemistry, macromolecular chemistry or similar. Furthermore, eagerness to learn new methods and to acquire further knowledge as well as good self-organization and ability to work independently are required.

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 (BA and MA 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 31.01.2022. The salary will be determined in accordance with TV-L E13.

Please send in a complete and convincing application including the supporting documents specified above and citing the reference number 00000247, by February 15th 2019 at the latest.

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

Dr. Monika Schulz

Freiburger Zentrum für interaktive Werkstoffe und bioinspirierte Technologien (FIT)

Georges-Köhler-Allee 105

D-79110 Freiburg

Kennwort: livMatS


For further information, please contact Herr Thorsten Hugel on the phone number +49 761 203-6192 or E-Mail:

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Doctoral Position in the area of Polymer Physics