The Paul Scherrer Institute PSI is the largest research institute for natural and engineering sciences within Switzerland. We perform cutting-edge research in the fields of matter and materials, energy and environment and human health. By performing fundamental and applied research, we work on sustainable solutions for major challenges facing society, science and economy. PSI is committed to the training of future generations. Therefore, about one quarter of our staff are post-docs, post-graduates or apprentices. Altogether, PSI employs 2100 people.

For the Thin Films & Interfaces group we are looking for a
PhD Student
Your tasks
The deposition of thin films has countless technological applications and is instrumental to probing the fundamental properties in many fields of scientific research.

One of the most important methods for the grown of thin films, especially of oxide materials, is pulsed laser deposition (PLD). In particular, PLD has no rivals for the growth of thin films of materials with complex chemical compositions. However, achieving the desired composition is one of the primary challenges encountered in the deposition of thin films.

  • During this PhD project you will investigate the PLD process in the case of materials with difficult chemical compositions, aiming at forming a general framework to obtain the correct stoichiometry
  • Use mass spectrometry to characterize the mass and energy distributions of the laser-generated plasma species
  • Observe the expansion profile of various ablated species in the plasma using energy-, space-, and time-resolved plasma imaging
  • Characterize in situ the chemical composition of the thin films using secondary ion mass spectroscopy
  • The comparative analysis of the characteristics of the ablated plasma, the selected set of deposition parameters, the chemical composition of the target and the film, is expected to provide new insights into the overall ablation process and film growth
  • The PhD degree will be received from the ETH Z├╝rich
Your profile
  • Masters degree in physics, chemistry, or materials science with a particular focus on solid state physics and inorganic chemistry
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English
  • Prior expertise with spectroscopic methods will be advantageous
We offer
Our institution is based on an interdisciplinary, innovative and dynamic collaboration. You will profit from a systematic training on the job, in addition to personal development possibilities and our pronounced vocational training culture. If you wish to optimally combine work and family life or other personal interests, we are able to support you with our modern employment conditions and the on-site infrastructure.

For further information, please contact Prof. Dr Thomas Lippert, phone +41 56 310 40 76.

Please submit your application online by 15 December 2021 (including addresses of referees) for the position as a PhD Student (index no. 3702-04).

Paul Scherrer Institut, Human Resources Management, Silja Giacomini-Diebold, 5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland