Postdoc in dark matter-electron interactions in materials

Ref REF 2022-0833

The Department of Physics at Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden, invites applications for a postdoc position in dark matter-electron interactions in materials within the Division of Subatomic, High-Energy and Plasma Physics. The selected candidate will focus on the modeling of general dark matter-electron interactions in detector materials. This will be done by combining methods from particle and solid state physics in order to effectively describe the response of bound electrons to an external dark matter perturbation. The expected outcome of this project has several applications to the field of dark matter direct detection, and will allow the selected candidate to establish herself/himself as a leading researcher in an interdisciplinary field at the forefront of research

Information about the division and the research

The research contained in this project will be performed within the Division of Subatomic, High-Energy and Plasma Physics at the Dept. of Physics, Chalmers University, under the supervision of Associate Professor Riccardo Catena, and with the possibility to collaborate with Professor Nicola Spaldin, Dept. of Materials, ETH, Zurich.The Division of Subatomic, High-Energy and Plasma Physics performs research on theoretical and experimental subatomic physics, mathematical and high-energy physics, plasma and fusion physics as well as nuclear physics. This diversity of research topics allows us to connect fundamental questions about the particles and forces governing our universe to energy-related research. The methods of our investigations are also diverse and complementary, and range from theory and computer simulations to experiments in subatomic physics.

The theoretical subatomic physics group within the Division of Subatomic, High-Energy and Plasma Physics performs theoretical research on nuclear, elementary particle and astroparticle physics by using different research methodologies from quantum field theory, computational physics, statistics as well as applied mathematics.Within astroparticle physics, our investigations range from the theoretical modeling of physical systems or phenomena which cannot be described by the Standard Model of particle physics, to the interpretation of cosmological and astrophysical data on the origin, composition and evolution of our universe and of its constituents. Currently, our studies focus on deciphering the elusive nature of dark matter – one of the major unsolved mysteries of modern science. We are especially interested in modeling the microscopic properties of dark matter, in computing their observable consequences, and in designing strategies to experimentally test them.

Major responsibilities

The selected candidate’s main responsibility is to perform analytical and numerical calculations of dark matter-induced electron transition rates in a wide range of detector materials by combining methods from particle and solid state physics. The selected postdoc is also expected to develop own ideas and the ability to tackle complex physics problems independently, while having the opportunity to co-supervise master students in our group.


The ideal candidate for this postdoc position has a strong background in particle and astroparticle physics, with a focus on dark matter. Strong analytical skills in quantum field theory are expected, while master-level knowledge in solid state physics is appreciated. A genuine curiosity in the subject matter (as for example attested by the participation in conferences or summer/winter schools) and excellent communication skills, both oral and written, are also appreciated. Further experience with interdisciplinary projects is meritorious. Knowledge of Swedish is not a prerequisite for applying, since English is our working language, and we publish internationally.To qualify for the position of postdoc, you must hold a doctoral degree awarded no more than three years prior to the application deadline (according to the current agreement with the Swedish Agency for Government Employers).

Contract terms

This postdoc position is a full-time temporary employment for two years.

We offer

Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the coastal city of Gothenburg. Read more about working at Chalmers and our benefits for employees.Chalmers aims to actively improve our gender balance. We work broadly with equality projects, for example the GENIE Initiative on gender equality for excellence. Equality and diversity are substantial foundations in all activities at Chalmers.

Application procedure

The application should be marked with Ref 20220648 and written in English. The application should be sent electronically and be attached as PDF-files, as below. Maximum size for each file is 40 MB. Please note that the system does not support Zip files.

CV: (Please name the document as: CV, Surname, Ref. number) including:

  • CV, include complete list of publications
  • Previous teaching and pedagogical experiences
  • Two references that we can contact.

Personal letter: (Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, Ref. number)1-3 pages where you:

  • Introduce yourself
  • Describe your previous research fields and main research results
  • Describe your future goals and future research focus

Other documents:

Attested copies of completed education, grades and other certificates.Use the button at the foot of the page to reach the application form.

Application deadline: January 30, 2023

For questions, please contact:Associate Professor, Riccardo Catena (SHP),