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Advertising division: IEK-11 - Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg for Renewable Energy
Reference number: 2021D-034

Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter in der Abteilung Elektrokatalytic Engineering

Would you like to contribute to the energy transition in Germany through your work? Then the Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg (for Renewable Energy) (HI ERN) is the right place for you! The HI ERN forms the core of the close partnership between Forschungszentrum Jülich, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin for Materials and Energy, and Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg at the Erlangen site. The collaboration relates to the areas of innovative materials and processes for photovoltaic energy systems and hydrogen as a storage and carrier medium for CO2-neutral energy. Support us researching and developing solutions for the climate-neutral, sustainable, and cost-effective utilization of renewable energies.
The electrocatalytic interface engineering department led by Prof. Dr.-Ing. Simon Thiele focuses on manufacturing, analysis and simulation of functional materials to find an optimum structure on small scales from the micrometer to the nanometer scale. The investigated materials and systems play an essential role in sustainable technologies like water- and CO2-electrolyzers, as well as in fuel cells. Further information about the HI ERN and its research focus can be found on www.hi-ern.de.

We are looking to recruit a

PhD student - Manufacturing and characterization of membrane electrode assemblies for proton exchange membrane water electrolyzers

Your Job:

  • Additive manufacturing of membrane electrode assemblies for proton exchange membrane water electrolyzers that are made from new catalyst layers
  • Physical, spectroscopic, and electrochemical characterization of membrane electrode assemblies prior to, during, and after operation
  • Study and process optimization of manufacturing of membrane electrode assemblies in order to improve the achievable performance and stability
  • Participation in project meetings
  • Coordination with internal and external partners
  • Publication and presentation of research results in relevant journals or at international conferences

Your Profile:

  • Excellent master’s degree in Chemistry, Physics, Process Engineering, Chemical Engineering, or a similar discipline
  • Strong interest in pursuing research on electrochemical systems
  • Experience in one (or more) of the following areas is desirable: electrochemistry, electrocatalysis, additive manufacturing (spray coating, doctor blade, slot-die coating), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy
  • High motivation for pursuing a PhD within 3 years
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Ability to show initiative and work independently
  • Excellent cooperation and communication skills and ability to work as part of a team
  • Excellent skills in spoken and written English

Our Offer:

We work on the very latest issues that impact our society and are offering you the chance to actively help in shaping the change! We offer ideal conditions for you to complete your doctoral degree:

  • A lively scientific environment within the institute and possibilities for cooperation with excellent partners at the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, the Forschungszentrum Jülich, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin, and abroad
  • Outstanding scientific and technical infrastructure
  • Opportunity to participate in (international) conferences and project meetings
  • Continuous scientific mentoring by your scientific advisor
  • Further development of your personal strengths, e.g. via a comprehensive further training programme
  • 30 days of annual leave
  • A structured doctoral degree programme for you and your supervisors with a comprehensive further training and networking package on our doctoral researchers’ platform JuDocs https://www.fz-juelich.de/judocs


The position is initially for a fixed term of 3 years, with possible long-term prospects. Pay in line with 75% of pay group 13 of the Collective Agreement for the Public Service (TVöD-Bund) and additionally 60 % of a monthly salary as special payment („Christmas bonus“). Pay higher than the basic pay may be possible.

Place of employment: Erlangen

Forschungszentrum Jülich promotes equal opportunities and diversity in its employment relations.
We also welcome applications from disabled persons.

Additional Information

We look forward to receiving your application until 27.05.2021 via our
Online-Recruitment-System!

Questions about the vacancy?
Get in touch with us by using our contact form.
Please note that for technical reasons we cannot accept applications via email.