2 industrial PhD positions

March 15 2017
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type


Avantium's business unit Renewable Chemistries develops proprietary technologies in the area of biomass conversion. Avantium's experience and expertise in catalysis help to implement and test ideas and solutions for new types of chemistry. Avantium has the capability to develop breakthrough technologies that enable other companies to make chemicals, fuels and plastics from renewable resources. In this way Avantium provides solutions that may alleviate the effects of climate change, and solve environment and sustainability issues. 


Position and requirements

The positions are financed within the Marie Sklodowska Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN)  ELCOREL. The successful candidates must have a Master degree* in Chemistry (Physical, Analytical), Chemical Engineering, or Physics, must be in the first 4 years of his/her research career and meet the mobility eligibility criteria as outlined by the Marie Curie ITN rules**. The positions are intended for 48 months.  You will be employed by Avantium, and enrolled in the PhD program of Leiden  University.  The positions provide a monthly salary and cover also the tuition fees for the enrolment in the PhD program of Leiden University.

Experience with electrochemistry and electrochemical equipment is an advantage.  You have the ability to communicate complex information clearly in spoken and written English. You contribute actively to the safety in our laboratory,  and adhere to our Health & Safety regulations. Initiative and creativity are key competences


The projects

The scope of Project 1 is the development of advanced electrodes and membrane-electrode assemblies for CO2 reduction to CO/HCOOH. The objectives are to engineer a CO2-reduction prototype electrolyser and to optimize the membrane-electrode assemblies and electrolyser hydrodynamics. Expected results are the design and construction of a prototype electrolysis cell and optimized feed and reactant product separations

The scope of Project 2 is the development of advanced electrodes for methanol and methane in a lab scale electrolyser. The objectives are to prepare optimized catalysts for selective methane and methanol production by CO2 reduction, their scale-up and integration into lab-scale electrolysers and testing of their feasibility. Expected results are a synthesis method of the catalysts, techniques for scaled-up membrane-electrode assembly fabrication, and verification of the catalysts selectivity in the electrolyser.


Additional Information

Applications for the positions have to be electronically submitted through the ELCOREL project website www.elcorel.org. Successful applications must contain 1) Structured CV (with list of publications) including information on expected date of graduation, 2) Motivation letter containing names and email of at least 2 references, 3) Certified copy of the MSc Diploma or Transcript of studies. Applications will be accepted until the positions are filled; full attention will be guaranteed to the applications registered before May 1st 2017.


For more information you can contact Dr. Klaas Jan Schouten, Program Manager Renewable Chemistries, at klaasjan.schouten@avantium.com


*at the time of the contract commencement

** Successful candidates may not have carried out their main activity in The Netherlands for more than 12 months in the previous 3 years.

This job comes from a partnership with Science Magazine and Euraxess