PhD Research Fellow in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems (MANTIS)

Deadline: 04.10.2021

University of South-Eastern Norway

The University of South-Eastern Norway, USN, is one of Norway’s largest higher education institutions, with around 18,000 students and 1,900 employees across eight different campuses.

We offer studies, research and knowledge dissemination, all targeting various professions and working life and with a high level of quality internationally. Our goal as a University is to create value both for the individual student and for business and commerce, the public sector and society in general. We achieve this by utilising the best tools we have: education and research.

USN is a University with a strong social commitment where studies and working life are integrated. At USN, we focus on practice-relevant, profession-oriented and applied research and education.

The students shall benefit from innovative educational methods and challenging studies closely associated with society's requirements and needs.

They will learn how to adapt to a society and working life that is constantly changing. The University shall meet major social challenges with knowledge and expertise, helping to promote practical solutions, structural changes and new ways of thinking. USN’s academic activities shall be embodied by a clear dedication to the UN’s sustainable development goals. The University aims to realise this main profile in close cooperation with society and working life.

For more information on USN, please go to www.usn.no

About the position

The Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences has a vacancy for a position as PhD Research Fellow in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems from 01.11.2021.

The position is associated with the Department of Microsystems and reports to the Head of Department. The place of employment is Campus Vestfold in Horten, Norway.

Appointment is for a period of three years. The position does not include teaching duties, and there is a premise for employment that the PhD Research Fellow is enrolled in USN’s PhD-program in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems within three months of accession in the position.

About the PhD-project

Packaging of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) is important to ensure optimal performance and reliability of the devices. This research project focuses on various approaches for hermetic sealing of MEMS devices. The process includes (i) design and microfabrication of caps/lids to enhance the performance of specific devices, (ii) evaluation of various bonding/sealing techniques, and (iii) characterization of hermeticity, integrity and reliability of the sealed packages. Wafer-level packaging has emerged as a potential approach for mass production of MEMS devices at a lower cost, as compared with die-level packaging.

The research of the PhD fellow will cover the entire process for hermetic sealing of MEMS devices with particular interest on low-temperature bonding/sealing methods. Reducing bonding temperature is beneficial for hermetic sealing process in terms of increasing yield, reducing stress induced in the wafer packages, minimalizing impact on MEMS devices and (in some cases) its integrated electronics. The potential bonding method includes various metallic bonding techniques: Primarily solid-liquid interdiffusion (SLID) and secondarily thermocompression bonding. Both these techniques allow a lower process temperature while the resulting bonds are robust to higher temperatures. These bonding techniques are used for die attach and for electrical interconnection, as well as for hermetic sealing. A variety of metal systems are relevant.

The PhD fellow will be supported by a larger research team working on packaging solutions for new MEMS-based microbolometer arrays used in infrared thermal imaging systems. The team consists of professors, postdoctoral and PhD fellows, in addition to industrial partners.

The successful candidate will be a member of the research group “Materials and Micro-integration” at Department of Microsystems. The group has long experience with packaging technologies including materials, assembly, integration, characterization and testing. The group has substantial collaboration with industrial partners in Norway as well as international partners.


Applicants to the PhD position must have a Master’s degree or equivalent higher education qualifications in micro- and nanosystems technology, system integration, physics, material science or closely related subjects. The applicant must have gained the degree within the commencement date.

It is a requirement that the successful applicant is granted admission to the university’s doctoral programme in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems, which requires an average grade B from Master’s degree, in addition to grade B at the final master project.

Our working environment is based on teamwork, and the candidate must be motivated to share his or her knowledge and cooperate. Personal suitability for the position will be emphasized

The candidate must be motivated and demonstrate a proven ability to work independently as well as effectively within a team to formulate and realise common objectives.

Specific requirements for the position are described below.

  • We are looking for a person with knowledge and experience in several of the following fields: microsystems (design and microfabrication), assembly and integration of MEMS devices (die-level and/or wafer-level), characterization techniques, testing.
  • Ability to perform experimental work is crucial. Ability to perform computer modelling such as final element modelling is an advantage.
  • Good analytical and theoretical skills, as well as creative thinking and communication skills are essential.
  • Motivation for working with the topic.

Applicants are required to provide evidence of good English language skills, both writing and speaking. Applicants outside the Scandinavian educational system may use one of the following tests as such documentation: TOEFL, IELTS, Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) or Cambridge Certificate of Profiency in English (CPE).

We offer

  • A professionally stimulating working environment
  • Good opportunities to develop your career and your academic skills
  • A good social environment
  • Attractive welfare benefits in the State Pension Plan


PhD Research Fellow (code 1017): NOK 491 200 a year. Further promotion will be based on time served in the position.

In special cases, employment in code 1378 may be considered.

A statutory contribution to the state pension plan will be deducted from the employee’s salary.

Other information

The Academic Appointments Board for PhD Research Fellowships is responsible for the appointment. An expert assessment of applicants will be carried out. The candidates deemed best qualified will be invited to an interview.

The person appointed must comply with the laws, regulations and agreements that apply at any given time to the post. Please note that approved work permit is a prerequisite for the employment.

It is an aim of personnel policy that the academic staff of University of South-Eastern Norway should reflect the composition of the general population. There are few women employed in research positions at the Department, and consequently women are especially encouraged to apply.

Pursuant to section 25, 2nd paragraph of the Freedom of Information Act, information on the applicant may be disclosed even if the applicant has requested not be included on the list of applicants. Applicants will be notified if such requests are not allowed.

Contact information

For more information about the position, please contact:

  • Associate professor Hoang-Vu Nguyen, phone: +47 31009658 or
  • Professor Knut Aasmundtveit, phone: +47 31009319 at Department of Microsystems

For questions regarding the recruitment process, please contact:

How to apply

The University of South-Eastern Norway makes use of online application management. Applicants to the post must register their application and CV with enclosures online via the Jobbnorge recruitment portal by clicking on the link on the right-hand side – “Søk stillingen” (Apply for the post).

The following documents shall be attached to the online application:

  • Certified diplomas and certificates from university college/university
  • Master's thesis
  • Any scientific publications and a list of these
  • Three references (contact information)

Please note that all documents must be in a Scandinavian language or in English. Any translations must be certified.

The application will be assessed on the basis of the attached documentation as requested above. Each applicant is responsible for ensuring that the required documentation has been uploaded with the application deadline.

The University has been awarded a Charter & Code certificate by the European Commission, and is entitled to use the HR Excellence in Research (HRS4R) logo. The University is also a member of the EURAXESS network, which contributes to good working conditions for mobile researchers.

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