PhD Position in Physical / Analytical Chemistry

Wageningen University

PhD position in Physical/Analytical Chemistry

Location Wageningen

We are looking for

Do you have research experience in electrical sensing and/or polymer or surface chemistry? Do you have a good sense for how you work out your own ideas to meet project goals and establish bridges with adjacent disciplines? Would you like to pursue a career in academia where you can add value to the quality of life?Then we are looking for you!

What are you going to do?

You will work on a project aimed to explore the use of new polymer networks for gas sensing purposes. This project is fundamental in nature, but connects well to environmental, food safety, and medical monitoring, security applications, agri- and horticulture, and various industrial processes by addressing specific gases and vapours. In collaboration with another PhD student you will integrate newly synthesised polymer-based porous frameworks with electrical sensor devices, before characterizing them thoroughly under controlled environmental conditions. 

Key activities will be:

  • Preparation and characterization of polymer (and composite) coatings onto sensor surfaces and model substrates;
  • performelectrical sensor experiments with these modified sensors and;
  • analyse (and control of) the changes in sensor output upon the exposure to gases and gas mixtures. 
The main challenges of the project are to elucidate the sensor mechanisms involved and pinpoint the nature of the interactions between the innovative sensor coatings and the gases. We aim to achieve selective gas sensors by molecular control.

You will be closely involved in the implementation of this project. You will work in an multi-disciplinary environment with broadly oriented molecular thinkers  which offers you a lot of freedom for your own initiatives and personal growth.

We ask

  • You have an MSc degree in Analytical Chemistry, Molecular (Life) Sciences or comparable curriculum;
  • a strong molecular background (physical organic, synthetic organic, organic materials) as well as strong analytical and problem-solving abilities are essential;
  • hands-on experience with electrical sensor technology and/or polymer or surface chemistry is highly desired;
  • your ability to perform independent lab work, affinity for the collaborative nature of this project, and good written and oral communication skills in English are crucial for their successful development.

We offer

A challenging position with, depending on your experience, a competitive salary starting at € 2395,-. with growth to € 3061,- for a full working week of 38 hours in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement Wageningen University.

In addition, we offer:

  • 8% holiday allowance;
  • a structural end-of year bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent training opportunities and secondary employment conditions;
  • flexible working hours that we determine together in good consultation;
  • excellent pension plan through ABP;
  • 232 vacation hours, the option to purchase extra and good supplementary leave schemes, e.g. the possibility to work a maximum of 2 hours per week extra for extra leave;
  • a flexible model to put together part of your employment conditions yourself, such as a bicycle plan;
  • a lively workplace on the Wageningen Campus
  • make use of the sports facilities on campus for a small fee. 
Wageningen University & Research stimulates internal career opportunities and mobility with our internal recruitment policy. There are ample opportunities for personal initiative in a learning environment. With us you get a versatile job in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

More information


For more information about this function you can contact Louis de Smet, telephone +31 (0)317 481268 or by e-mail:

For more information about the procedure you can contact Rutger Voorrips, recruiter, email:

Do you want to apply?

This can be done directly via the application button at the vacancy on our website so that we can process your personal data with your permission. Please note that applications via e-mail will not be taken in procedure. Please mention in your motivational letter why you are the best candidate for this project, and why this specific project is interesting to you. Your experience is what we want to see in your resume.

This vacancy is open until November 6th 2020. We want to plan the first job interviews shortly after that date.

Equal opportunities employer

We are an employer that offers equal opportunities. We are happy to receive applications from all suitably qualified people regardless of race, gender, functional impairment, religion / belief, sexual orientation or age.
We believe that a diverse and inclusive working environment makes us a more relevant, competitive and resilient organization. Click here for more information about working at WUR with a functional impairment.

We are

This PhD position falls under the Organic Chemistry group. CLICK HERE for more info about our work and use THIS LINK to learn more on the subgroup of Advanced Materials for Chemical Selectivity. 

The mission of our University is to explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life. Within Wageningen University & Research, nine specialised research institutes from the Wageningen Research Foundation and Wageningen University have joined forces to help answer the most important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment. 

With approximately 30 locations, 6,500 employees, and 12,000 students, it is one of the leading organisations in its domain worldwide. An integrated approach to problems and the cooperation between various disciplines are at the heart of the unique approach of Wageningen. We have been named Best Employer in Education category 2019-2020.

Click here for more information about working at Wageningen University & Research.

Apply now