PhD on Fabrication and characterization of thermal routers based on 2D heterostructures and graphite

University of Twente


February 5, 2022


Job description

The Catalytic Processes and Materials (CPM) group, from the faculty of Science and Technology (S&T) of the University of Twente, in collaboration with the Thermal Engineering (TE) group, from the Faculty of Engineering Technology are searching for a PhD candidate for the HOT project. In this project, funded by the Dutch Research Council (NWO), you will develop thermal routers with a core made of graphite, exploiting its high thermal conductivity and flexible properties, and a ultra-high thermal resistive capping layer based on 2D heterostructures to facilitate heat to flow along the graphite core. The thermal routers and the insolation layer must be compact and flexible. These thermal elements will be applied for advanced thermal management of batteries, leading to an isothermal operating performance. The outcome of this project will play a key role in our electrified future.

We envision a candidate that will be using thin-film layer deposition techniques, like Chemical Vapor Deposition, to achieve conformal 2D layers (transitional metal dichacolgenides) on top of graphite. We expect the candidate to be able to conduct thin-film growth in both cleanroom and wet- chemistry labs followed by detailed characterization of physico-chemical and thermal properties of the materials. The thermal characterization will be accompanied multi-physics modelling of the observed behavior, providing new descriptors for the development of advanced thermal conduits. We expect the candidate to interact with the industrial partners of the project, Philips, Thales, VDL and InnoEnergy, for the development of fabrication recipes that can be scaled-up in the future.

The work will be carried out in collaboration between the University of Twente (The Netherlands) (~2.5 years) and the CSIC-Madrid (Spain) (~1.5 year). The work at the University of Twente will be conducted in the Catalytic Processes and Materials group (Dr. ir. J.A. Faria) in the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Thermal and Fluid Engineering group (Prof. G. Brem) in the Faculty of Engineering Technology. In the CSIC-Madrid the work will be supervised by the group FINDER (Dr. M. Muñoz Rojo). You are encouraged to visit the different groups here:

- Catalytic Processes and Materials group (https: // www.

- Thermal and Fluid Engineering group (https: // www.

- CSIC-Madrid (https:// www.

Your profile

We seek highly motivated early-career researcher with a MSc degree on applied physics, material science, and/or nanotechnology with an excellent background on thermal characterization, solid-state physics, micro-fabrication, and cleanroom experience. Programing experience is highly valued on (MATLAB, C/C, Python, COMSOL). Our ideal candidate must enjoy working in an internationally and multi-disciplinary team contributing to the research of team-members. We welcome strong interpersonal skills and interest in sharing knowledge at conferences and meetings. Proficiency in English is required, both spoken and written. The appointment will require mobility of the candidate between the Netherlands (2.5 years) and Spain (1.5 years).

Our offer
  • Full-time 4-year PhD position.
  • The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in a stimulating scientific environment.
  • Salary and conditions in accordance with the collective labour agreement for Dutch universities. The PhD salary is € 2.443,- in the first year and increases to € 3.122,- in the fourth year.
  • Full status as an employee, including pension and health care benefits.
  • A stimulating, modern research environment with world-class research facilities, including access to the NanoLab in the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology.
  • A personal development program within the Twente Graduate School.
  • Researchers from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a tax-free allowance equal to 30% of their taxable salary (the 30% tax regulation).
  • The number of holiday hours with full-time employment is 232 hours per calendar year
  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%.
  • Information and application

    Your application should include the following information:

  • A cover letter outlining your specific interest, qualifications, and motivation to apply for this position.
  • A detailed CV.
  • Transcripts (in English for non-Dutch applicant) from your Bachelor and Master degrees.
  • Contact information of two scientific staff members (one should be the supervisor of your MSc thesis project) who are willing to provide a recommendation letter at our request.
  • An interview and a scientific presentation will be part of the selection procedure.
  • Please submit your application via the “Apply now” button.

    For more information about the position, you are encouraged to contact Dr. Jimmy A. Faria (

    About the department

    The Catalytic Processes and Materials (CPM) group is part of the Faculty of Science and Technology, TNW, at University of Twente. Within CPM we apply fundamental knowledge on molecular reactions and diffusion in/on heterogeneous catalysts for exploration of new catalytic materials, catalytic devices, and processes of relevance for industry and society. The research in the Thermal Engineering (TE) group, within the Faculty of Engineering Technology, is concerned with questions related to industrial applications of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and heat and mass transport.

    About the organization

    TNW Faculty (Faculty of Science & Technology)

    Our faculty focuses on three domains, namely Chemistry, Health, and Physics. We are the home base for the research institutes TechMed, MESA+, the Techno Centre for Education and Research (TCO), and the Twente Graduate School (TGS). TNW offers six Bachelor's and seven Master's programs in Health Sciences, Nanotechnology, (Applied) Physics, Chemistry, and Technical Medicine. Over 850 colleagues and 2,700 students are active within the faculty of Science & Technology.

    University of Twente (UT)

    University of Twente (UT) has entered the new decade with an ambitious, new vision, mission and strategy. As ‘the ultimate people-first university of technology' we are rapidly expanding on our High Tech Human Touch philosophy and the unique role it affords us in society. Everything we do is aimed at maximum impact on people, society and connections through the sustainable utilisation of science and technology. We want to contribute to the development of a fair, digital and sustainable society through our open, inclusive and entrepreneurial attitude. This attitude permeates everything we do and is present in every one of UT's departments and faculties. Building on our rich legacy in merging technical and social sciences, we focus on five distinguishing research domains: Improving healthcare by personalised technologies; Creating intelligent manufacturing systems; Shaping our world with smart materials; Engineering our digital society; and Engineering for a resilient world.

    As an employer, University of Twente offers jobs that matter. We equip you as a staff member to shape new opportunities both for yourself and for our society. With us, you will be part of a leading tech university that is changing our world for the better. We offer an open, inclusive and entrepreneurial climate, in which we encourage you to make healthy choices, for example, with our flexible, customisable conditions.