Industrial PhD scholarship in Microchip Inlets for Mass Spectrometry

Wednesday 18 Nov 20

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Apply no later than 28 February 2021
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An Industrial PhD student position (3 years) is available at Spectro Inlets in collaboration with DTU Nanolab, DTU Physics, and the Technical University of Denmark.

Spectro Inlets is a DTU spin-out company that specializes in offering commercial solutions for mass spectrometers by utilizing a novel microchip inlet technology. This technology allows for fully quantitative online measurements of electrochemical reactions, as well as online measurements of industrial processes, both in liquid and gaseous environments. The innovation has already resulted in a number of 
high-impact publications in fundamental electrochemistry, as well as commercial success with international sales of analysis instruments. 

For this Industrial PhD, Spectro Inlets has initiated a development project to further this technology in collaboration with Professor 
Henri Jansen and Professor Ole Hansen from DTU Nanolab as well as Professor Peter Vesborg from DTU Physics. Your supervisor at Spectro Inlets will be Anil Thilsted, director and PhD in micro- and nanofabrication. 

You will be joining a highly ambitious 8-person team at Spectro Inlets, including 6 PhD engineers specialized in the fields of nanofabrication, vacuum physics, chemistry, and electrochemistry both within fundamental research and commercial development. The team is international, representing 5 nationalities. 

Fabrication of the microchip inlets is carried out at the DTU Nanolab cleanroom facilities, which boast state-of-the-art equipment, including methods for photolithography, reactive ion etching, and electron microscopy. The equipment usage is supported by trained process specialists. 

For this position, we are recruiting a PhD Studentship in Micro-Nanofabrication/Chemical/ Fluid Mechanics Engineering for a period of 36 months with start as soon as possible.

Responsibilities and tasks
You will produce and characterize the next generation of microchip inlet systems for mass spectrometry.

Your research tasks will be: 

  • Design and fabrication of a micro-jet capillary for precise injection of molecules into a vacuum chamber containing a mass spectrometer
  • Development of a microchip allowing for both liquid and gas transport, allowing for more versatile electrochemical measurements
  • Develop a scalable surface treatment that can withstand industrial liquid environments, including e.g. organic solvents used in batteries, as well as heterogeneous liquids
  • Development of an all-silicon microchip microfabrication recipe

Candidates should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree. 

Knowledge and skills the following fields are necessary to successfully complete the project: 

  • Micro- and nanofabrication
  • Fluid mechanics
  • Chemical engineering

Proven experience from one or more of these topics is an advantage, as well as the willingness to learn the rest.

The candidate must be highly motivated, and ready to work both in a commercial and scientific environment. This includes having a strong work ethic and motivation to succeed in a competitive research and commercial field as well as having a strong team spirit and excellent collaboration skills.

Approval and Enrollment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degrees programmes at DTU under the Industrial PhD programme. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the 
DTU PhD Guide.  

The assessment of the applicants will be carried out by Anil Thilsted, Henri Jansen, Ole Hansen and Peter Vesborg.

We offer
Spectro Inlets is a young, fast growing, and ambitious high-tech company located centrally in Copenhagen. The company is involved in several research projects as well as commercial joint ventures. Sales of analysis instruments to research groups have been running for approximately 1.5 years and development is currently underway to expand the technology into industrial sensor designs. We are located in Copenhagen (Nørrebro) and have laboratory facilities. We offer a friendly professional environment as well as highly enthusiastic and engaged colleagues who will contribute to the supervision of the project.

DTU is a leading technical university globally recognised for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. DTU offers a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment and strives for academic excellence in an environment characterised by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
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 and negotiated with Spectro Inlets. The period of employment is 3 years. 

You can read more about 
career paths at DTU here.    

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Anil Thilsted,

You can read about Spectro Inlets at

You can read more about ongoing and previous projects of the research groups at 
www.spectroinlets.comAdvanced Nanomachining at DTU NanoLab, and Surface Physics and Catalysis at DTU Physics.  

Please submit your online application no later than 28 February 2021 (local 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: 

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered. 

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

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 vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 12,000 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. Our main campus is in Kgs. Lyngby north of Copenhagen and we have campuses in Roskilde and Ballerup and in Sisimiut in Greenland.