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The Ultrafast Dynamics Group (Prof. Steven Johnson) at ETH Zurich is searching for a postdoctoral researcher for experimental studies of ultrafast dynamics in condensed matter.


Project background

How fast can phase transitions occur? How fast can a solid material change its structure from a stable state to a new, metastable state? What are the “speed limits” on engineering fast solid state memory or other devices?  These are the core research questions of the ultrafast dynamics group at ETH Zurich and the Paul Scherrer Insitute (PSI). The group conducts predominantly experimental research into the ultimate time scales for manipulating the structure of solid-state materials using a variety of ultrafast laser spectroscopy methods. At ETH Zürich the group has several ultrafast laser systems with the ability to perform pump-probe experiments using wavelengths from THz to the UV using a wide variety of observables. At PSI the group works closely with the SwissFEL team to develop and perform experiments using x-rays as a time-resolved probe of dynamics on time scales ranging from femtoseconds to nanoseconds.

This position is part of a project to achieve coherent structural transformations along multiple structural coordinates in a fully controllable way.  The goal is to learn how to control order parameters in a reversible, efficient way.  Experimental work will be conducted both at ETH Zürich and at PSI.

Job description

  • Develop new setups for ultrafast pump-probe spectroscopy using both THz and mid-infrared light
  • Work in a team to develop novel methods for quantifying structural dynamics near phase transitions using x-ray FEL radiation
  • Acquire and analyze data on such dynamics
  • Assist with the supervision of PhD and masters students linked to the project
  • Assist with the teaching of courses in the department of physics  
  • Write peer-reviewed publications and promote the results at international conferences

Your profile

Candidates must have obtained a PhD degree in physics, materials science or a related field. Direct experimental experience with ultrafast optics is required, and experience with accelerator-based x-ray sources is beneficial. Successful candidates will have proven track-record of excellent research performance. The ability to work well in a highly international, collaborative environment is highly valued.

ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.Working, teaching and research at ETH ZurichGet connected

Interested?

We look forward to receiving your online application with the following documents:

  • Motivation letter (< 1 page, why you are applying)
  • CV
  • Publication list
  • List of at least 3 references with contact information (no letters necessary, we will contact them as needed)

Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered.

Further information about the ultrafast dynamics group can be found on our website. Questions regarding the position should be directed to Prof. Steven Johnson, Tel +41 44 633 76 31 or email (no applications).

Apply online now

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