PhD project in Quantum Chemistry on Quantum Computers

Department of Chemistry Faculty of SCIENCE

University of Copenhagen

The Department of Chemistry invites applicants for one or two PhD fellowship in Quantum Chemistry. The project is part of the research project “Hybrid Quantum Chemistry on Hybrid Quantum Computers”, which is financed by the Novo Nordisk Foundation.

Start date is 1 August 2023 or as soon as possible thereafter.

The project

The project will be part of the Hybrid Quantum Chemistry on Hybrid Quantum Computers” project, which has the goal to develop quantum chemistry methods and software that will run on noisy intermediate-scale quantum (NISQ) computers. The present project will be concerned with the development of algorithms for the calculation of molecular properties both in the form of ground state expectation values and linear resonse functions for correlated wavefunctions.

Who are we looking for?

We are looking for candidates within the field(s) of Quantum Chemistry and of Quantum Computing. Applicants can have a background from Quantum Chemistry with particular emphasis on the development of ab initio response theory methods using correlated wave functions or from Quantum Information Science with particular emphasis on the development of algorithms for NISQ quantum computers as e.g. the variational quantum eigensolver algorithm.

Our group and research- and what do we offer?

The “Hybrid Quantum Chemistry on Hybrid Quantum Computers” project is at the border of quantum computing and quantum chemistry. It is a joint effort of the research groups of professor Stephan P. A. Sauer at the Department of Chemistry at University of Copenhagen (UCPH), professor Sonia Coriani at the Department of Chemistry at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), and professor Jacob Kongsted at the Department of Physics, Chemistry and Pharmacy at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU). Although this opening is for a position at the Department of Chemistry at University of Copenhagen, the position involves close collaborations with postdoctoral researchers and PhD students at DTU and SDU as well as at our industrial partners, which will work jointly on different parts of this common project. The focused research project thus provides a vibrant scientific environment.

The group is a part of Department of Chemistry, Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. We are located in Copenhagen.

We offer creative and stimulating working conditions in dynamic and international research environment.

Principal supervisor is Professor Stephan P. A. Sauer, Department of Chemistry, sauer@chem.ku.dk, +45-35320268

The PhD programme

Depending of your level of education, you can undertake the PhD programme as either:

Option A: A three year full-time study within the framework of the regular PhD programme (5+3 scheme), if you already have an education equivalent to a relevant Danish master’s degree.

Option B: An up to five year full-time study programme within the framework of the integrated MSc and PhD programme (the 3+5 scheme), if you do not have an education equivalent to a relevant Danish master´s degree – but you have an education equivalent to a Danish bachelors´s degree.

Option A: Getting into a position on the regular PhD programme

Qualifications needed for the regular programme

To be eligible for the regular PhD programme, you must have completed a degree programme, equivalent to a Danish master’s degree (180 ECTS/3 FTE BSc + 120 ECTS/2 FTE MSc) related to the subject area of the project, e.g. chemistry or quantum information science or nanoscience or physics or mathematics. For information of eligibility of completed programmes, see General assessments for specific countries and Assessment database.

Terms of employment in the regular programme

Employment as PhD fellow is full time and for maximum 3 years.

Employment is conditional upon your successful enrolment as a PhD student at the PhD School at the Faculty of SCIENCE, University of Copenhagen. This requires submission and acceptance of an application for the specific project formulated by the applicant.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Danish Ministry of Taxation and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State. The position is covered by the Protocol on Job Structure.

Option B: Getting into a position on the integrated MSc and PhD programme

Qualifications needed for the integrated MSc and PhD programme

If you do not have an education equivalent to a relevant Danish master´s degree, you might be qualified for the integrated MSc and PhD programme, if you have an education equivalent to a relevant Danish bachelor´s degree. Here you can find out, if that is relevant for you: General assessments for specific countries and Assessment database.

Terms of the integrated programme

To be eligible for the integrated scholarship, you are (or are eligible to be) enrolled at one of the faculty’s master programmes in chemistry or quantum information science or nanoscience or physics.

Students on the integrated programme will enroll as PhD students simultaneously with completing their enrollment in this MSc degree programme.

The duration of the integrated programme is up to five years, and depends on the amount of credits that you have passed on your MSc programme. For further information about the study programme, please see: www.science.ku.dk/phd, “Study Structures”.

Until

the MSc degree is obtained, (when exactly two years of the full 3+5 programme remains), the grant will be paid partly in the form of 48 state education grant portions (in Danish: “SU-klip”) plus salary for work (teaching, supervision etc.) totalling a workload of 150 working hours per year. A PhD grant portion is currently (2023) DKK 6.587 before tax.

When 

you have obtained the MSc degree, you will transfer to the salary-earning part of the scholarship for a period of two years. At that point, the terms of employment and payment will be according to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State (AC). The position is covered by the Protocol on Job Structure.

Responsibilities and tasks in both PhD programmes

  • Complete and pass the MSc education in accordance with the curriculum of the MSc programme

(ONLY when you are attending the integrated MSc and PhD programme)

  • Carry through an independent research project under supervision
  • Complete PhD courses corresponding to approx. 30 ECTS / ½ FTE
  • Participate in active research environments, including a stay at another research institution, preferably abroad
  • Teaching and knowledge dissemination activities
  • Write scientific papers aimed at high-impact journals
  • Write and defend a PhD thesis on the basis of your project

We are looking for the following qualifications:

  • Professional qualifications relevant to the PhD project
  • Relevant publications
  • Relevant work experience
  • Other relevant professional activities
  • Curious mind-set with a strong interest in quantum chemistry and quantum information science
  • Good language skills

Application and Assessment Procedure

Your application including all attachments must be in English and submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include:

  1. Motivated letter of application (max. one page)
  2. Your motivation for applying for the specific PhD project
  3. Curriculum vitae including information about your education, experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position
  4. Original diplomas for Bachelor of Science or Master of Science and transcript of records in the original language, including an authorized English translation if issued in another language than English or Danish. If not completed, a certified/signed copy of a recent transcript of records or a written statement from the institution or supervisor is accepted.
  5. Publication list (if possible)
  6. Reference letters (if available)

Application deadline:

The deadline for applications is 15 March 2023, 23:59 GMT +1.

We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.

The further process

After deadline, a number of applicants will be selected for academic assessment by an unbiased expert assessor. You are notified, whether you will be passed for assessment.

The assessor will assess the qualifications and experience of the shortlisted applicants with respect to the above mentioned research area, techniques, skills and other requirements. The assessor will conclude whether each applicant is qualified and, if so, for which of the two models. The assessed applicants will have the opportunity to comment on their assessment. You can read about the recruitment process at https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/.

Interviews with selected candidates are expected to be held in week 18-19.

Questions

For specific information about the PhD fellowship, please contact the principal supervisor.

General information about PhD study at the Faculty of SCIENCE is available at the PhD School’s website: https://www.science.ku.dk/phd/.

The University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding community and invites all regardless of personal background to apply for the position. 

Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.

Info

  • Application deadline: 15-03-2023
  • Employment start: 01-08-2023
  • Working hours: Full time
  • Department/Location: Department of Chemistry