Ph. D. Student PositionTU Kaiserslautern and University Koblenz-Landau • Institute for Environmental Sciences • Landau

Germany Universities


September 30, 2021


Open Positions 1

Time Span as soon as possible for 2 years Application Deadline 30 Sep 2021 Financing yes Type of Position

  • PhD - Individual Supervisor
  • Field of Research

  • Mathematics / Natural Sciences
  • Subjects Physics-Chemistry Description The TU Kaiserslautern (TUK) stands for research strength, good teaching and a cosmopolitan and family-like atmosphere. With flat hierarchies, modern infrastructure and family-friendly benefits, the only one technical university in Rhineland-Palatinate is an attractive employer that offers its employees future-proof prospects. Research and teaching here is primarily in the fields of natural sciences and engineering, as well as social sciences, economics, planning and architecture. More than 100 courses of study are offered at 12 departments and the DISC distance learning center, and around 14,500 students and 2,500 staff members enliven the green campus, which is close to nature, every day. The company health management, university sports and CampusKultur provide a wide range of sports, health and leisure activities.

    The research group Interfaces, Nanomaterials and Biophysics (Prof. Dr. Christiane Ziegler) in the Department of Physics at the Technical University of Kaiserslautern has been working for many years on the investigation of complex interfaces and the use of surface analytical methods. One focus is on interfaces between biological systems and technical surfaces and their characterization using atomic force microscopy. The Environmental and Soil Chemistry group at the Institute of Environmental Sciences at the campus Landau of the University of Koblenz-Landau is engaged in fundamental research on soil structure, natural substances and the fate of nanoparticles in natural waters. A variety of methods are used and interdisciplinarity is promoted. The Technical University of Kaiserslautern and the campus Landau of the University of Koblenz-Landau will be merged following the decision of the university restructuring law from October 2020. As of 01.01.2023, the merged university should exist. The Carl Zeiss Foundation supports cross-site research on STEM-based sustainability topics between the Technical University of Kaiserslautern (TUK) and the Campus Landau (CLD) of the University of Koblenz-Landau for the period from 1.7.2021 to 30.6.2023 by establishing a Carl Zeiss Cooperation Fund for Sustainability Research. In the context of the approved project "Investigation of the behavior of nanoparticles in natural waters using atomic force microscopy and spectroscopy (SFM, SFS)", the following position is to be filled as soon as possible:

    PhD (m/f/x)

    Research topic: Nanoparticles are an important component of the Earth's biogeochemical system. To this end, an estimated 1-10 million tons of anthropogenic nanoparticles are released into the environment each year through various mechanisms. For example, directly through the weathering of facade paint or building materials containing nanoparticles as pigments or additives. Another example of direct input is the release of nanoparticles from cosmetic products such as sunscreens, which very often contain titanium dioxide nanoparticles (n-TiO2). Additional indirect sources are, for example, from wastewater which often cannot be completely purified from nanoparticulate pollutants in treatment plants. That is why many ecosystems are facing pollution by anthropogenic nanoparticles which could become significant in the future due to direct toxicity or more complex interactions with other pollutants. Different waters contain different substances that can sorb on nanoparticles and natural particles, where they exhibit adhesion forces that are distinguishable from each other. This leads to altered aggregation behavior, which is critical for environmental fate and pollutant behavior. In this project, atomic force microscopy and spectroscopy will be used to study the adhesion behavior of nanoparticles. Methods need to be developed to immobilize even small nanoparticles that are not visible in the optical microscope on the cantilever. In addition, it must be examined how to overcome the gap between model experiment (known substances in a model liquid) and an experiment in a flowing water of unknown composition.

    Your tasks: • Planning and execution of the experiments including data evaluation • Interdisciplinary cooperation between the participating working groups • Presentation at national and international conferences • Publications in international journals

    Requirements: • Scientific university degree (master or comparable) in physics, technophysics, biophysics, chemistry, biology (with deep interest in physics) or a related discipline • Previous experience in experimental laboratory work (from bachelor/master thesis) • Previous experience in scanning probe microscopy desirable • High motivation for independent work and research • Strong interest in interdisciplinary work • Ability to work in a team

    We offer: • Varied and exciting biophysical research with interdisciplinary as well as innovative topics • a versatile and diversified activity and a pleasant working atmosphere in two dedicated, interdisciplinary teams • Possibility to apply for a PhD-degree • Payment according to the collective agreement for the public service of the federal states (E 13 TV-L) • Additional pension plan (VBL) • Discounted ticket for public transportation (job ticket) • Company health management

    Please send your detailed application, preferably by e-mail, to: TU Kaiserslautern Fachbereich Physik, AG Ziegler Postfach 30 49 67653 Kaiserslautern oder E-mail:

    If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Christine Müller-Renno (Tel.: 0631-205 3235, email: or Dr. Allan Philippe (Tel.: 06341-280 31589, email:

    Additional Information: • The contractual employment takes place at the TU Kaiserslautern. • The Technical University of Kaiserslautern as well as the University of Landau strongly encourage qualified academics to apply. • Applicants with children are welcome. • Please submit only uncertified copies and do not use folders/clear slides as they will not be returned due to costs. • If applying electronically, please attach only one single contiguous PDF. • Data protection compliant destruction after completion of the job filling process is guaranteed. • Costs incurred in connection with your application (travel expenses or similar) will not be reimbursed. • We do not send confirmations of receipt. • By submitting your application, you consent to the further internal processing of your data for official purposes in accordance with the European Data Protection Regulation (DS-GVO) and the State Data Protection Act RLP.

    Working Language

  • English
  • German
  • Language of Dissertation

  • English
  • German
  • Required Documents

  • CV
  • Reports, certificates
  • Transcripts
  • Letter of Motivation
  • List of Publication
  • More Information https: // www. uni-

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