Empa - the place where innovation starts

Empa is the research institute for materials science and technology of the ETH Domain and conducts cutting-edge research for the benefit of industry and the well-being of society.
The Laboratory for Advanced Analytical Technologies develops innovative and inventive methods for material science spectroscopy and offers a
PhD Candidate on Rational Reactor Design by Neutron Imaging

The Laboratory for Advanced Analytical Technology at Empa and Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering, ETH Zurich, are looking for a highly motivated PhD candidate to work in the field of chemical engineering and catalysis.


The PhD student will design, construct, and test pilot reactors for the conversion of hydrogen and CO2 to methane based on the so-called sorption enhanced methanation at Empa. The upscaling of sorption enhanced reactors from the lab scale to pilot plant size is a great challenge, as various parameters are unknown, and can currently only be assessed along experiences with similar processes. To avoid bad investments a rational design of reactor setup and materials is needed. The candidate will utilize neutron imaging to probe the behavior of the reactor and the materials used under operating conditions. The results will give feedback for improved materials, in particular shape and dimension of the macroscopic catalyst structure to be optimized. The PhD is embedded in a larger project under participation of the Laboratory Automotive Powertrain Technologies at Empa and various companies, and under the auspices of Prof. Jeroen van Bokhoven (Doktorvater). The student will be a member of Prof. van Bokhoven's group at ETH (http://www.vanbokhoven.ethz.ch) and of the Hydrogen Spectroscopy group at Empa.

Your Profile

You are a highly motivated experimentalist with a Master in chemistry, materials science or chemical engineering. You have proven hands-on laboratory experience in catalysis. Demonstrated skills with data processing, routine or lab-view programming, and instrumentation design are particularly appreciated. We are considering only complete applications via web portal.

Review of applications begins immediately and will continue until the position is filled. The tentative start date is 1st March 2020 or upon mutual agreement.

For further information about the position please contact Dr. Andreas Borgschulte andreas.borgschulte@empa.ch or David Heusser (HR) david.heusser@empa.ch and visit our websites www.empa.ch/web/s502 and Empa-Video

We look forward to receiving your online application including a letter of motivation, CV, diplomas with transcripts, list of publications, short statement of research interests and contact details of two referees. Please upload the requested documents through our webpage. Applications via email will not be considered.

Empa, David Heusser, Human Resources, Ueberlandstrasse 129, 8600 Dübendorf, Switzerland.