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PhD position Hydrogen Storage System Development

Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon
Geesthacht, Schleswig-Holstein (DE)
Closing date
Aug 7, 2021
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Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon conducts cutting-edge international research for a changing world: Around 1,100 employees contribute to the tackling of climate change, the sustainable use of the world's coastal systems and the resource-compatible enhancement of the quality of life. From fundamental research to practical applications, the interdisciplinary research spectrum covers a unique range.

Institute of Hydrogen Technology

The focus of the Institutes of Hydrogen Technology and Photoelectrochemistry is hydrogen, an essential building block for the energy transition. The optimal production, transport and storage of hydrogen are indispensable for it. The researchers are working on the system design of mobile hydrogen storage, infrastructure for stationary energy systems, green hydrogen through photo­electrochemistry, and material design.

PhD position Hydrogen Storage System Development

Reference code: 50064592_2 – 2021/WT 1
Commencement date: as soon as possible
The place of employment is Geesthacht (near Hamburg).
Application deadline: August 5th, 2021

The Institute of Hydrogen Technology and the Institute of Materials Physics at Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon, invite applications for a joint PhD position (m/f/d) in the field of hydrogen technology and advanced characterization methods. The position is initially limited to three years (starting as soon as possible).

The aim of the project is the synthesis and characterization of novel light metal hydride composites for hydrogen storage applications. In investigating the material properties, special emphasis will be placed on the characterization of the material's microstructural properties via a unique combination of synchrotron light and neutron-based techniques. The results of this work are expected to provide a solid base for designing the next generation hydrogen storage systems.

Equality of opportunity is an important part of our personnel policy. We would therefore strongly encourage qualified women to apply for the position.

Your tasks

  • synthesis of metal hydride composites by high-energy milling, wet chemistry and solid-gas reactions
  • material characterization with respect to chemical state and relevant application properties, i.e. hydrogen absorption/desorption, thermodynamics etc.
  • ex situ and in situ material characterization with respect to microstructural properties, e.g. implementation of tomographic characterization methods based on photons (synchrotron radiation) and neutrons
  • mutual optimization of acquisition, processing and analysis of image data
  • publish and present scientific results at international conferences and workshops

Your profile

These qualifications are essential to fulfil the above-mentioned duties:

  • Master degree in chemistry, physics or related fields is required
  • experiences in spectroscopic techniques, X-ray/neutron scattering techniques, kinetics of chemical reactions
  • proficient in a relevant programming language (python, Matlab, C/C++, etc.)
  • experience with data analysis
  • team player with good communication skills
  • ability to work in an interdisciplinary and international team
  • excellent skills in oral and written English

These qualifications are considered assets:

  • experience in working with powder materials
  • experience with hydrogen/hydrogen storage materials/hydrogen storage systems
  • experience with working at a synchrotron beamline
  • experience with simulation frameworks
  • good communication skills in German


Exchanges with the collaborating partners are planned. Furthermore, the applicant will have the chance to visit hydrogen technology related scientific training workshops, complementary skills seminars at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Hereon, and is expected to present scientific results at international conferences.

For further information about the project and the partners of the network, please contact Dr. Claudio Pistidda (

We offer you

  • multinational work environment with ca. 1,100 colleagues from more than 50 nations
  • extensive options of vocational training (i. a. expert seminars, language courses or leadership seminars)
  • flexible working hours and various models to ensure the compatibility of family and career
  • excellent infrastructure, including a scientific in-house library as well as modern work spaces
  • remuneration according to the standards of the collective wage agreement TV-AVH including further social benefits
  • free employee advice - Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • childcare offers
  • Welcome Office, guest accommodation
  • canteen at the Geesthacht location

Severely disabled persons and those equaling severely disabled persons who are equally suitable for the position will be considered preferentially within the framework of legal requirements.


Then we are looking forward to receiving your comprehensive application documents indicating the reference number 2021/WT 1 including cover letter (short, concise, max. 1 page), CV, list of publications, letter of recom­men­dation, copies/​transcripts of certificates including grades, and (link to) pdf file of your disser­tation until August 5th, 2021. The application must not exceed 10 MB.

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