PhD Student Position: Molecular Design of Energy Materials 60 %
The University of Zurich Research Priority Program on Solar Light to Chemical Energy Conversion (URPP LightChEC) covers all interdisciplinary aspects of artificial photosynthesis. We focus on innovative strategies to new water oxidation catalysts (WOCs) and their understanding as a crucial step towards water splitting.
The following forefront strategies will be implemented in the course of the project:
Design of new (co-)catalysts. We work with a wide range of noble metal-free nano/atomic scale and molecular catalysts, including single atom catalysts, bio-inspired oxoclusters, and polyoxometalates. The project will focus on the fine-tuning and immobilization of molecular (co-)catalysts on (photoelectrode) surfaces to investigate their optimization principles and their catalytic pathways. All new catalysts will be directly characterized with a wide range of in house analytical techniques.
Catalytic pathways. Molecular catalysts immobilized on suitable (photoelectrode) surfaces will be tested for their (photo-)electrochemical performance, followed by a wide range of spectroscopic methods (AFM-Raman, fluorescence spectroscopy, EPR, XPS...). Selected systems will be investigated in depth with in situ X-ray absorption spectroscopy and related techniques to generate mechanistic insight, in close collaboration with theoreticians.
Perspectives. The project will promote the understanding of dynamic processes of both the (co-)catalysts and substrate materials in water splitting. Such insight is vital for optimizing the coordination environments of catalytic centers for efficient and economic device construction in the long term.
We look forward to a creative and explorative researcher with a MSc degree in inorganic, solid state, or materials chemistry. Crystallographic knowledge is essential, and experience in a wide range of preparative/spectroscopic techniques is a prerequisite. Strong English writing skills are required, together with good teamwork skills.
What we offer
We offer state-of-the-art research facilities and attractive support for the independent development of young researchers.
Place of work
Prof. Dr. Greta R. Patzke University of Zurich, Department of Chemistry Winterthurerstrasse 190 (Irchel Campus) 8057 Zürich
Start of employment
At the earliest or upon agreement. Please submit your CV, publication list, transcript of diplomas, two referees, and a short letter of interest until 30 November 2019 by using the 'apply now' button.