PhD Student

Last application date
Nov 17, 2019 12:11
WE06 - Department of Chemistry
Employment category
Doctoral fellow
Limited duration
Occupancy rate
Vacancy Type
Research staff

Job description

Crystallization is crucial for the formulation, separation and purification of high-value materials in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. In this project you will study the crystallization process of specific compounds (pharmaceuticals, polymers,…) using state-of- the-art nonlinear optical scattering techniques, combined with small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) techniques. The proposed techniques provide complementary information about different stages of the process, from aggregation and nucleation to subsequent growth. This opens a window into the fundamental mechanisms of nucleation and crystallization, a topic that is heavily debated but currently still lacks experimental underpinning. The goal is to elucidate the role of clusters on nucleation and crystal growth, to monitor (multi-step) nucleation and crystal formation. In the final stage of the project you will employ mechanistic and kinetic information about the growth process to actively steer the synthesis of selected compounds towards structures with desired properties, providing a unique tool for crystal engineering.

The project is funded by the Research Foundation Flanders and is a collaboration between KULeuven (Molecular Imaging and Photonics; prof. Thierry Verbiest, prof. Stijn Van Cleuvenbergen) and Ghent University (XStruct; prof. Kristof Van Hecke).

We can offer a funded PhD position for a period of four years in total, subject to meeting the requirements and deadlines set out by the supervisors and the doctoral school, with expected starting date of 01/01/2020.

Profile of the candidate

- Master degree in Chemistry or Biochemistry or Physics or Chemical Engineering or equivalent. For diplomas awarded outside the European Union, a certificate of equivalence (NARIC) must be submitted. The degree requirements need to be fulfilled at the start of your appointment.

- Background or prior experience with small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) techniques is highly recommended.

- Higlhy interested in academic research.

- Participation in extra trainings, schools,... is beneficial.

- Excellent communication skills in English (oral and written).

- Ability to perform in-depth and critical data analysis.

- Willingness to work at interdisciplinary boundaries, in close collaboration with the other project members.

- Team player with a strong sense of autonomy and responsibility.

How to apply

Please submit the following documents to no later than November 17th 2019:

- Motivation letter describing why you should be considered for this position

- Detailed CV, including information about academic achievements and results

- Copies of diploma’s and educational certificates

- Transcripts of B.Sc. and M.Sc. courses and grades

- Name and contact details of two references who have supervised you in your B.Sc. and/or M.Sc. research project and who are willing to provide a letter of recommendation.

All documents should be in PDF format and written in English. From all applications, a short-list of candidates will be made, who will be contacted for a (Skype) interview.