PhD scholarship in Deep Sub-Wavelength Time-Resolved Near Field Spectroscopy

tirsdag 21 jul 20

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Frist 21. august 2020
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A 3-year PhD position is available in the Ultrafast Infrared and Terahertz Science group at DTU Fotonik at the Technical University of Denmark with specific focus on the development and application of laser-based tools for time-resolved spectroscopy at the nanoscale.

The structural properties of two-dimensional (2D) materials are not pristine: nanoscale domains, grain boundaries and crystal defects can form during growth. These spatial variations can influence the migration of surface charges leading to non-uniform electrical and optical properties. Depending on the growth method, the quality of the material can vary. Mapping these spatial features and observing how they affect the transport of surface charges is of crucial importance for developing next-generation devices that can meet the stringent performance requirements of state-of-the-art electronic technologies. 

This project will leverage existing capabilities in scattering-type scanning near-field optical microscopy (s-SNOM), together with extensive experience in ultrafast terahertz (THz) spectroscopy, to develop techniques for studying the time-resolved electrical and optical surface properties of 2D electronic materials, with spatial resolution at the nanoscale.

We are looking for a talented and highly motivated colleague who can carry out an independent PhD project, is a self-starter, and has the ambition, attention to detail and commitment to achieve excellence. 

Responsibilities and tasks
The main task of the PhD candidate will be to map the static surface conductivity of semiconducting/metallic materials at the nanoscale, using THz-enabled s-SNOM (phase I); with the addition of photoexcitation, study the time-resolved transport properties in the weak-field regime (phase II); and explore the impact of highly localised ‘strong-field’ effects (phase III).    

The PhD student will also:

  • Collaborate in developing the PhD project
  • Be responsible for the project methodology and analysis
  • Lead and contribute to the publication of research data
  • Network with internal colleagues and external stakeholders
  • Represent the research group and disseminate project results at meetings, workshops and conferences

This is an open and unrestricted call. The successful candidate will be chosen based on their merits and suitability, but will be expected to have:

  • The ability to work collaboratively within an international team
  • An excellent record of scholarly performance from a recognised academic institution
  • A strong grounding in the foundations of optics and semiconductor physics
  • A proven interest in ultrafast spectroscopy and nano-photonics
  • The ability to think laterally, propose solutions to complex problems and analyse experimental data within the framework of theoretical models
  • An excellent command of written and verbal English
  • A two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree

It would be a beneficial if the candidate has:

  • Hands-on experience working in an ultrafast optics laboratory
  • Competency in a widely recognised scientific programming language

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

DTU offers
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Specifically, we will offer you:

  • A collaborative, engaging and stimulating working environment within which to rigorously pursue your scientific interests
  • Access to state-of-the-art laboratories equipped with leading-edge ultrafast laser infrastructure enabling a broad range of spectroscopic experiments
  • The opportunity to travel internationally to present your latest results at conferences and workshops, and perform research work at collaborating universities
  • A strong ethos of work-life balance
  • One of the highest paying PhD salaries globally

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information
For further information and informal enquiries, please contact Edmund Kelleher (, Peter Uhd Jepsen (, or visit

Please submit your online application no later than 21 August 2020 (local time)Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to ob­tai­ning their master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU Fotonik has 220 employees and is one of the largest research centers in the world focusing entirely on photonics. Research is performed within the span from fundamental science to applications, emphasizing the areas of nanophotonics, lasers, quantum photonics, optical sensors, LEDs, photovoltaics, ultra-high speed optical transmission systems, and bio-photonics.

Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 11,500 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. Our main campus is in Kgs. Lyngby north of Copenhagen and we have campuses in Roskilde and Ballerup and in Sisimiut in Greenland.