Postdoc in Kesterite based Photoelectrodes – DTU Physics


The SURFCAT section at DTU Physics explores the use of catalysis and solar energy harvesting to secure renewable energy for the future.M-ERA.NET has funded at project aiming to make photoelectrodes based on Kesterite-type absorbers (i.e. CZTS) which are capable of either water reduction to hydrogen or reduction of nitrogen-compounds to ammonia.The KESPER project is a collaboration between U. Hasselt (Belgium), IMEC (Belgium), INL (Portugal) and DTU, where your role at DTU will be to develop corrosion protection coatings and electrocatalytic coatings for the photoelectrodes in order to make them work for the target reactions.

The research is highly interdisciplinary and combines photovoltaics, electrochemistry and chemical synthesis.

Responsibilities and qualifications In close collaboration with the consortium partners your key tasks are to develop 1) a protection layer (e.g. TiO2), and 2) an electrochemical functionalization of the protection layer to catalyze the reactions; in such a way that both functional longevity, and chemical selectivity of the photocathode is ensured. It is essential that the coatings work in conjunction with the kesterite absorber substrates provided by the consortium partners so you will work in close collaboration with the consortium.At DTU you will join a small team of researchers working towards similar goals of solar capture and photoelectrodes – albeit looking at other materials – and therefore you must be a team-player. Synthesis and characterization equipment at Surfcat is shared among students and staff and the group is highly collaborative.

Key techniques and skills you will need include:

  • Thin-film deposition by reactive sputtering, and perhaps also evaporation and electroplating
  • Thin-film characterization by XPS, UV-VIS, EIS, SEM, etc.
  • ICP-MS of spent electrolyte
  • GC and or QMS for photocatalytic product quantification
  • Testing by potentiostatic or galvanostatic illumination (photocurrent)

As a formal qualification, you must hold a PhD degree (or equivalent).You are an experimentalist – second to none – with a solid theoretical understanding of physical chemistry and either solid state physics or synthetic chemistry as evidenced by excellent grades in relevant courses and a CV which documents your abilities.

You must have demonstrated experience in PVD thin-film deposition and several of the mentioned characterization techniques. Experience with solar cells or photoelectrodes (PEC) is also a great benefit. General UHV experience is also a plus.You are hard-working, highly motivated, and you are a team player. On a daily basis you will be working as a team with several other PhD students and Postdocs working on closely related projects.

Excellent written and spoken English skills are mandatory.

We offer DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and terms of employment The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The employment period is 2 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information Further information may be obtained from Professor Peter Vesborg, can read more about the SURFCAT section of DTU Physics at

Application procedure Please submit your online application no later than 19 February 2023 (Danish time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link “Apply online”, fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • Application (cover letter, 1 page max)
  • CV
  • Grade transcripts from BSc/MSc education and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Diploma (PhD)
  • List of publications

References can also be included in the PDF file.

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

Department of Physics prioritizes research areas within modern physics which represents a significant basic scientific challenge and also has clear application perspectives. The department has a number of state-of-the-art research facilities, including a supercomputer. Furthermore, the Department of Physics coordinates the undergraduate and master study Physics and Nanotechnology.

Technology for people DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear mission to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That mission lives on today. DTU has 13,400 students and 5,800 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.