PhD Student in Deposition and Characterization of Atomic Clusters (M/F)

Your work environment

The Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST) is a Research and Technology Organization (RTO) active in the fields of materials, environment and IT. By transforming scientific knowledge into technologies, smart data and tools, LIST empowers citizens in their choices, public authorities in their decisions and businesses in their strategies.

You will be part of the LIST Materials Research and Technology department

Through its research into advanced materials and processes, the department, with over 190 researchers and engineers, contributes to the emergence of enabling technologies that underpin the innovation processes of local and international industry. The department’s activities hinge on four thematic pillars supported by dedicated platform specialists as below:
  • nanomaterials and nanotechnology
  • scientific instrumentation and process technology
  • structural composite materials and manufacturing
  • and functional polymer unit
In the context of the project CLASMARTS (Cluster Assembled Materials Tuning for Sensing) funded by the Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR-CORE Call 2019), a 4-year PhD position is available at the Transparent and Optically Tunable Materials and Nanostructures group, MRT department of LIST, for a highly motivated student with experimental background.

Activities and responsibilities

Aiming to widen the group’s expertise in the area of nanoporous thin films and their perspective applications as active layers in the fields of gas sensing as well as of functional surfaces in general, CLASMARTS foresees:
  1. The development of a prototype equipment for Cluster Beam Deposition (CBD)
  2. The study of the growth dynamics of atomic clusters and their assembling into a nanoporous film;
  3. The study of the electrical conduction of cluster-assembled nanoporous films. The PhD research plan requires the participation to each one of the steps above. In particular it is expected:
  • The active participation to the design, assembling, and test of the vacuum system supporting CBD, through the interaction with engineering staff and external supply companies.
  • The active participation to the installation of the cluster beam source and related instrumentation.
  • The use of the CBD apparatus for the deposition of nanoporous thin films made of single-element and multi-element atomic clusters.
  • The study of the gas-phase formation of clusters and of the growth dynamics of the cluster-assembled thin films, addressing in particular the role of the process gas. This will be accomplished through the wide portfolio of in-house characterization facilities, such as TEM, SEM, AFM, XPS, ellipsometry.
  • The active participation to the development of the experimental setup for in-situ electrical conduction measurements to be performed during film growth.
  • The study of the electrical conduction and the drafting of conduction models for data interpretation.
Teamwork supported by original contribution is expected for the planning of the experimental work as well as for the analysis of the results.

Essential duties and responsibilities
  • Respectful, active and constructive collaboration with other PhD students, Engineering staff, R&D Associates at all levels, and/or external projects partners in conducting research work.
  • Respectful, active and constructive collaboration with his/her supervisor.
  • Conduction of the research work in effective and professional manner by keeping timely and accurate records of experiments and analyses performed through the personal Lab-Book.
  • Contribution to the dissemination of the knowledge generated by the research, through publications on international journals and presentations at scientific conferences or meetings with partners.
  • Contribution to the growth and protection of the intellectual property (IP) of the Institute through the collaboration to patent drafting.
  • Development and maintaining of a professional behavior with other PhD students, colleagues, and management.
  • Development and maintaining of professional competences as well as transversal soft skills through dedicated trainings.

Qualification profile

  • Master degree (or equivalent) in Engineering, Physics or Material Science, experimental.
  • Knowledge of vacuum technologies (pumping systems, vacuum gauges, valves).
  • Experience in the development of prototype/customized thin film deposition equipment or their subparts (e.g. chambers/manipulators/sample-holders design).
  • Experience in the area of thin film deposition by vacuum-based methods (e.g. CVD).
  • Experience in the area of thin film characterization (e.g. SEM, AFM, XPS, 4-probes).
  • Hands-on skills in instruments interfacing and data acquisition.
  • English (spoken and written), French as a plus.

We offer

Fixed term contract | 14 + 22 + 12 months extension | Fulltime/40h | Belvaux

Job reference: MRT-2020-001
Application file:
  • A CV
  • A motivation letter
  • References names of two or three referees
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Interested ? Please apply online

While applying for the job please refer to jobvector and use the following reference number: MRT-2020-001

About Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology

The Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST) is a mission-driven Research and Technology Organisation (RTO) that develops advanced technologies and delivers innovative products and services to industry and society . These innovations can also be used to solve a number of societal challenges, particularly in the areas of the environment, security, education and culture,...
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