Ledig stilling på Universitetet i Oslo

Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)
Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Solar Energy Conversion

Deadline: 17.10.2022

Universitetet i Oslo

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest rated institution of research and education with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. Its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally esteemed research communities make UiO an important contributor to society.


Centre for Materials Science and Nanotechnology (SMN) is an interdisciplinary focus field for material and energy research at the University of Oslo. SMN has focused on basic research in renewable energy and environmentally friendly use of fossil energy sources. The center consists of research groups from the Department of Physics (Fi) and Chemistry (Ki), has about 100 employees from around the world and manages more than 80 projects funded by the EU, the RCN and others.

Job description

An interdisciplinary Postdoctoral research position in the field of solar energy conversion (solid state physics/inorganic chemistry) is available at the the Centre of Materials Science and Nanotechnology (SMN) as part of the SOLARIS-Initiative.

Preferred starting date January 1, 2023.

The appointment is a fulltime position and is for a period of four years (25 % of which is devoted to required duties, usually in the form of teaching activities).

No one can be appointed for more than one Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Oslo.

More about the position

We are seeking a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with a genuine interest in developing the chemistry and physics needed to optimize materials for solar energy conversion applications. The fellowship is part of the SOLARIS-Initiative, one of five world leading research communities at University of Oslo, which stimulates interdisciplinary activities and research collaborations both within the University of Oslo and on a national and international level in the field of solar energy conversion. SOLARIS is directly connected with the Centre of Materials Science and Nanotechnology (SMN). SMN consists of five research groups that value cross disciplinary research. The centre has an excellent research infrastructure covering atomistic simulations and chemical, structural, optical and electrical characterization methods as well as device fabrication. The infrastructure includes the Micro- and Nanotechnology Laboratory (MiNaLab) with a clean room area in excess of 400 m2 , as well as a multitude of modern characterization facilities.

One aspect of the SOLARIS-Initiative is the discovery of materials through combinatorial materials science and the optimization of their physical properties for solar energy conversion applications. This is the background for the position. As part of the SOLARIS-Initiative you will play a key role in a team of highly talented PhD students and researchers managed by experts within this field. The objective of the Postdoctoral Research position is to improve the photo electrocatalytic properties of the very promising photocatalyst Ta3N5, which will play a major role in future photo-electrochemical systems and the production of solar fuels. Combinatorial material synthesis will be used to investigate the stability and efficiency of Ta3N5 as function of doping and alloy composition. The deposited thin films will be experimentally investigated with respect to structural, optical and electrical properties. Further, electrochemical characterization by, e.g., linear sweep voltammetry, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy etc. will be employed. For selected compositions, functional surface coatings will be deposited in-situ with the scope to further enhance the electrocatalytic efficiency and the long-term stability.

The project is highly interdisciplinary involving semiconductors physics, electrochemistry and catalysis and aims in the generation of fundamental knowledge for the rational design of efficient photo-electrocatalysts.

We are looking for a team player with a high level of communication skills and assertiveness who wants to work in a highly motivated team of national and international researchers. In addition, collaboration with and support and supervision of PhD students is required. The Postdoctoral Research Fellow is expected to prepare scientific manuscripts and presentations for national and international conferences.

Postdoctoral fellows who are appointed for a period of four years are expected to acquire basic pedagogical competency in the course of their fellowship period within the duty component of 25 %.

The main purpose of a postdoctoral fellowship is to provide the candidates with enhanced skills to pursue a scientific top position within or beyond academia. To promote a strategic career path, all postdoctoral research fellows are required to submit a professional development plan no later than one month after commencement of the postdoctoral period.

Qualification requirements

The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences has a strategic ambition to be among Europe’s leading communities for research, education and innovation. Candidates for these fellowships will be selected in accordance with this, and expected to be in the upper segment of their class with respect to academic credentials.

Applicants must fulfill the following requirements:

  • An academic degree equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree in solid state physics/inorganic chemistry. The doctoral dissertation must be submitted for evaluation by the closing date. Only applicants with an approved doctoral thesis and public defense are eligible for appointment
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English
  • Knowledge in solid state and semiconductor physics and (photo)electrochemistry
  • Experience in thin film deposition by pulsed-laser eposition and magnetron sputtering
  • Experience with materials characterization and preparation, for example X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, electron energy loss spectroscopy, cathode- or photoluminescence, atomic force microscopy, secondary electron microscopy and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, electrical conductivity or Hall-effect measurements

Desired additional qualifications:

  • Experience in experimental electrochemistry (cyclic voltammetry, linear sweep voltammetry, etc.)
  • Strong data analysis and presentation skills, e.g., using Python, MatLab, Gwyddion, Vesta, Photoshop, Illustrator
  • Experience in writing and publishing scientific manuscripts and articles
  • Experience in preparation and presentation of scientific talks in English
  • Experience in supervision of PhD and/or Master/Bachelor students

Personal skills

  • Ability to conduct high-quality independent research within a broad collaboration
  • Self-motivation, creativity, genuine curiosity about the subject, work discipline, professional ethics, and ambition
  • Good social, communication and collaboration skills and ability to work independently and in interdisciplinary scientific environment
  • Interpersonal communication skills and the ability to work as part of a team

We offer

  • Salary NOK 544 400 – 626 300 per annum depending on qualifications in position as Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (position code 1352)
  • Attractive welfare benefits and a generous pension agreement
  • Professionally stimulating working environment
  • Vibrant international academic environment
  • Postdoctoral development programmes
  • Oslo’s family-friendly surroundings with their rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities

How to apply

The application must include:

  • Cover letter (statement of motivation, summarizing scientific work and research interest)
  • CV (summarizing education, positions, pedagogical experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activity)
  • Copies of educational certificates, academic transcript of records
  • Letters of recommendation
  • A complete list of publications and up to 5 academic works that the applicant wishes to be considered by the evaluation committee
  • Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number)

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “Apply for this job”. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an explanation of their University's grading system. Please note that all documents should be in English (or a Scandinavian language). In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on the documented, academic qualifications, the project description (whenever this is required in the call for applicants), and the quality of the project as well as the candidates motivation and personal suitability. Interviews with the best qualified candidates will be arranged.

It is expected that the successful candidate will be able to complete the project in the course of the period of employment.

Formal regulations

Please see the guidelines and regulations for appointments to Postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Oslo.

If an applicant has applied for and been granted funding for a fulltime research stay abroad while being employed as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, the employment will be prolonged with the equivalent time as the research stay, but for no longer than of twelve months (thus extending the employment to a maximum of four years).

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.

The University of Oslo has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results a.o.

Inclusion and diversity are a strength. The University of Oslo has a personnel policy objective of achieving a balanced gender composition. Furthermore, we want employees with diverse professional expertise, life experience and perspectives.

If there are qualified applicants with disabilities, employment gaps or immigrant background, we will invite at least one applicant from each of these categories to an interview.

Contact information

For further information please contact: Holger von Wenckstern, e-mail: [email protected]

For questions regarding Jobbnorge, please contact HR Adviser Elin Thoresen, e-mail: [email protected]

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