Side header image

PhD or Postdoctoral position, Precise structure characterisation for scanning transmission electron microscopy - 2018BAPFWETEF284

The EMAT research group at the Faculty of Science (University of Antwerp) is seeking to fill one full-time postdoctoral and two PhD positions in the area of precise structure characterisation using fast pixelated detectors for scanning transmission electron microscopy under the supervision of Prof Sandra Van Aert.

These vacancies are situated in an H2020 ERC Consolidator grant Picometer metrology for light-element nanostructures: making every electron count (PICOMETRICS). The overarching goal of PICOMETRICS is to usher transmission electron microscopy in a new era of non-destructive picometer metrology. Novel data-driven methods will be combined with the latest experimental capabilities to study nanostructures from single low-dose recordings using fast pixelated detectors for scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). The required electron dose is envisaged to be four orders of magnitude lower than what is nowadays used. In this manner, beam damage will be drastically reduced or even be ruled out completely. This will enable precise characterisation of nanostructures in their native state; a prerequisite for understanding their properties.

Job description

  • Depending on your interest, the successful candidate will work on (i) the design and optimization of experiments with a focus on how to reduce the required electron dose, (ii) deep learning in 4D STEM using neural networks and maximum likelihood estimation for precise positioning of atoms in 3D, (iii) chemical and oxidation state mapping or (iv) 3D structure analysis from time series data to track changes over time.
  • The PhD candidates prepare a doctoral thesis in the field of sciences.
  • The postdoctoral researcher has the opportunity to supervise student projects.
  • You publish scientific articles related to the research project of the assignment.
  • You present your work at national and international workshops and conferences.

Profile and requirements

  • The PhD candidates hold a master degree while the postdoctoral researcher holds a PhD degree with a background in e.g. physics, mathematics, statistics, transmission electron microscopy, scientific computing or artificial intelligence.
  • You are enthusiastic and greatly interested in the quantitative analysis of electron microscopy data.
  • You can submit outstanding academic results.
  • You are highly motivated, quality-oriented, conscientious, creative and cooperative.

We offer

  • a doctoral scholarship for a period of 1 year, renewable for 3 years after positive evaluation for the PhD candidates. The postdoctoral researcher will be appointed for an initial period of one year and can be prolonged depending on performance;
  • an exciting project in which we will aim to go significantly beyond the state-of-the-art;
  • a competitive salary;
  • the position will be filled as soon as possible, but the starting date can be adapted to the selected candidate’s availability;
  • a world-class, dynamic and stimulating work environment with state-of-the-art instrumentation and computing facilities (see also

Additional information about the vacancy can be obtained from: Sandra Van Aert, tel. +32 3 265 3252,

Please submit your motivation letter, CV, summary of your Master and/or PhD thesis, a list and grades of the courses that you took during your studies, and names of 2 professional referees as one single PDF file uploaded on the following Application Submission page. Applications will be considered as and when they are received and this position will be filled as soon as possible.

The University of Antwerp is a family friendly organization, with a focus on equal opportunities and diversity. Our HR-policy for researchers was awarded by the European Commission with the quality label HR Excellence in research.

We support the Science4Refugees initiative and encourage asylum-seeking, refugee scientists and researchers to apply for a job at the University of Antwerp.