Ledig stilling på Universitetet i Oslo

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

Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Theoretical Chemistry

Deadline: 02.10.2022

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.

Hylleraas Centre for Quantum Molecular Sciences operates under the aegis of the Department of Chemistry at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. The Department of Chemistry is Norway's largest institution within research and education in chemistry.

Our research excels internationally and we educate students to a wide variety of jobs in industry, academia, research institutions, schools and public administration. Our research ranges from the core topics of chemistry to applied science within in environmental, health, energy and materials.

The Department has extensive contacts with industry, research and educational institutions at home and abroad. As partner in the Centre for Materials Science and Nanotechnology our researchers contributes to a significant interdisciplinary efforts in cooperation with the Department of Physics. The Department of Chemistry has its own school laboratory as a great resource for teachers, public outreach and the didactics of chemistry.

Job description

Position as Postdoctoral Research Fellow available at the Department of Chemistry / Hylleraas Centre for Quantum Molecular Sciences.

The fellowship is for a period of up to 3 years. Starting date as soon as possible.

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

Job/ project description:

This project is dedicated to the study of the structure and reactivity of main-group Grignard-like organometallic compounds by computational approaches under the supervision of Profs. Michele Cascella and Odile Eisenstein. The research if part of the project: MetalSynergy - Revealing the elusive world of main-group organometallic chemistry: An adventure with computational chemistry, funded by Pioneering Research Grant scheme of the Research Council of Norway.

The research promotes the rational design of more sustainable and eco-friendly reactions that employ polar organometallic compounds by computational modelling. Alkali and alkaline-earth organometallic reagents are used daily in academy and industry for organic synthesis and constitute today a critical asset for the synthesis of a broad range of valuable compounds, from anticancer drugs to soil-enriching fertilisers. Despite their extensive use, the molecular structures in solution and associated reaction mechanisms of these main group organometallic reagents are little known or understood.

The objective of the project is to apply ab initio molecular dynamics and multi-scale modelling to characterize the elusive chemistry of Grignard reagents in the presence of additives like organolithium or other salts containing main group cations, similarly to what done in recent seeding works about the Grignard reagent and the Grignard reaction (Peltzer et al., J. Phys. Chem. B 2017, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2020).

The core of the research will be about developing realistic structural models for the compounds of interest, studying them by adequate computational tools (mainly ab initio molecular dynamics and enhanced sampling methods), predicting properties and reactivity and designing chemical modifications able to improve them. Computational predictions will be tested in the partner experimental laboratory of Prof. Eva Hevia (University of Bern, Switzerland). Specifically, the future collaborator will be tasked with the development of machine-learned empirical potentials extracted from ab initio data for fast, reliable description of the organo-compounds in solution, and their interconversion.

The postdoc will take part in all research and professional development activities of the National Centre of Excellence - Hylleraas Centre for Quantum Molecular Sciences. The Hylleraas Centre is shared between the University of Oslo and the Arctic University of Norway in Tromsø, and it is devoted to the development and applications of molecular simulations methods for systems of chemical relevance, with strong focus on complex systems.

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 hold a degree equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree in Chemistry, Physics, Computer science or similar fields. Doctoral dissertation must be submitted for evaluation by the closing date. Only applicants with an approved doctoral thesis and public defence are eligible for appointment.
  • Documented training in either theoretical, computational chemistry, condensed matter theory, molecular physics or close/equivalent topics is required
  • Experience with multi-scale molecular modelling is required
  • Experience with machine-learning approaches for force-field parameterization is required
  • Knowledge of molecular dynamics codes and enhanced sampling techniques is required
  • Knowledge of statistical mechanics is required
  • Programming skills are required
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English
  • The applicant must be willing to spend periodic visits to collaborators abroad

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 and research interests
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work - scientific publications)
  • Copies of educational certificates, transcript of records
  • List of publications and academic work 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).

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

Formal regulations

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

No one can be appointed for more than one Postdoctoral Fellow period at the University of Oslo.

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

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