Lund University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physics

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top 100 universities. The University has 40 000 students and 7 400 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

The Faculty of Science conducts research and education within Biology, Astronomy, Physics, Geosciences, Chemistry, Mathematics and Environmental Sciences. The Faculty is organized into nine departments, gathered in the northern campus area. The Faculty has approximately 1500 students, 330 PhD students and 700 employees.

The Department of Physics is with a staff of about 350 scientists and educators one of the largest departments within Lund University. There are seven research divisions and a number of research centra within the department. The research activities at the department cover a broad spectrum of modern physics.

The Division of Synchrotron Radiation Research has during recent years been the fastest growing part of the Physics Department, with now more than 40 employees. The main focus of the research is experimental studies of electronic, structural, and chemical properties of materials, especially nanostructures. At the division we use and develop a wide range of synchrotron and lab based techniques, such as X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy/imaging and X-ray diffraction/imaging. We also host Sweden's largest facility for scanning probe microscopy (

Job assignment

Within this project, the PhD candidate will use scanning probe microscopy – including both scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) – to investigate nanostructure surfaces and interfaces down to the atomic scale. A broad range of nanostructures is expected to be studied, with a focus on semiconductor nanowires which are intended for application in photovoltaics, light-emitting diodes, and electronics. This work will be embedded in the NanoLund Center for Nanoscience, a world-leading research center that involves more than 250 scientists from various disciplines working within nanoscience and nanotechnology (

The research group has access to five fully functioning ultrahigh vacuum STM/AFM systems, several of which are equipped with electrical contacts for in-situ studies of electronic devices. A newly acquired low-temperature STM/AFM (for operation below 10K) will be central within this project, e.g. for investigating quantization effects in nanostructures. In addition, experiments will be performed at the MAX IV Laboratory in Lund, the world’s most brilliant synchrotron facility (, and at other international synchrotrons. Experiments will also include the use of a variety of other widely used nanoscience characterization and fabrication techniques.

The successfull candidate is expected to use existing equipment and develop novel approaches to explore nanostructure surfaces and devices, even under operational conditions or during surface modification. The work will be performed in collaboration with several other researchers at the department. The main task for the doctoral student will be to conduct research education, which includes work with research, but also to master graduate courses. Participation in several PhD schools (e.g. on nanoscience or advanced microscopy) is offered.

Supervisors for this project will be Rainer Timm and Anders Mikkelsen.

Entry requirements

A formal requirement for doctoral studies in physics is:

  • a university degree on advanced level within a related field, such as a Master's degree in physics or equivalent, or
  • substantial advanced course work at the Master level, or comparable, including an independent research project.

Furthermore, the acceptance is based on the estimated ability to accomplish postgraduate studies.

Other requirements:

Good knowledge in spoken and written English is a requirement.

Basis of assessment

Selection to postgraduate studies is based on the expected ability to perform well in the studies. The evaluation of the ability to perform well is based primarily on the results of studies at the basic and advanced levels, in particular:

  1. Knowledge and skills relevant to postgraduate studies within the research area, such as a broad and thorough preparation in physics. This can be documented by appended documents.
  2. Estimated ability to work independently and the ability to formulate and solve scientific questions. This ability can be established, for example, based on undergraduate research experiences, a Master's thesis or in a discussion of scientific problems during a possible interview.
  3. Skills in written and oral communication.
  4. Other experience relevant to postgraduate studies, such as professional experience.

Other assessment criteria:

We consider good cooperation ability, drive, and independent work ability as positive personal attributes, as well as creativity and a curious mind.

For the present position, experience with high resolution STM or surface studies of semiconductors is considered of value. The ability for skilful laboratory work is essential, including advanced microscopy and ultrahigh vacuum technology. Experience in working at synchrotron radiation facilities and in clean-room environments is of additional benefit. Experience in the scientific interaction with researchers from other disciplines and from other countries is important.

Terms of employment

A PhD position is an employment with the main duty to be engaged in PhD studies according to the study plan. The duration of PhD studies is 4 years full time studies. In addition, those appointed to doctoral student position may be required to work with educational tasks, research, and technical/administrative duties at a level of at most 20% of full time. The position is then extended correspondingly, however not longer than corresponding to 5 years full time employment. PhD positions are subject to special regulations. These can be found in the Swedish Higher Education Ordinance (SFS 1993:100, ch. 5, with updates). Only those who are or have been admitted to PhD-studies may be appointed to PhD position.

Application procedure

Apply online! Applications must contain a covering letter in which applicants describe themselves and their particular research interests. Applications must also include a CV, a copy of the applicant’s Master’s thesis (or a summary text if the thesis is not yet completed), contact details of at least two references, copies of grade certificates, and any other documents that the applicant wishes to refer to.


We ask companies dealing with advertising job openings and staffing companies to refrain from seeking contact with us since we are bound by contracts in the governmental system.

The English version of this announcement is an interpretation of national formalities expressed in the Swedish text. In case of uncertainties, the Swedish text applies.

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
First day of employment as soon as possible
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100 %
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2017/473
  • Rainer Timm, Associate professor, +46 46 222 82 94,
Union representative
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-222 93 62,
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet, 046-222 93 64,
Published 07.Mar.2017
Last application date 07.Apr.2017 11:59 PM CET

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