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New Methods to Measure Chemical Dynamics at XFELs

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Reference Number: PhD19KIR1 (Please include this in your application)

X-ray Free-Electron Lasers (XFELs) enable completely new types of measurements capable of characterising chemical dynamics and light-induced processes in unprecedented detail. Achieving this requires that a new theoretical framework is developed. This project will focus on quantum molecular dynamics simulations, electronic structure calculations, and calculations of experimental observables. The goal is to interpret state-of-the-art experiments at major facilities such as SACLA (Japan) and LCLS (USA). These facilities are beginning to have noticeable impact on ultrafast science and our group is well-positioned to contribute to exciting new developments together with our world-leading experimental collaborators. We are looking for a talented and ambitious PhD candidate to join our team. A strong desire to learn more about fundamental aspects of photochemistry, chemical dynamics, and to work on theory and simulations in close conjunction with experiments is a crucial. For recent scientific publications from the group, please see Dr Kirrander’s website (link above).

A suitable candidate will possess, or expect to obtain, a first class or upper-second class undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in chemical physics, chemistry, or physics. Candidates with a background in computing or mathematics may also be considered. A strong interest in theory, quantum mechanics, and computation is a must, as is enthusiasm for (learning) computer programming. Other essential attributes are good presentation and communication skills, both written and oral. In the first instance, informal enquiries (accompanied by a CV) should be directed to:
Dr Adam Kirrander, School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh. Email:

The position will remain open until filled. Starting date is September 2020.
Please provide contact details for two academic references familiar with you and your work/studies.

Equality and Diversity Clause
The School of Chemistry holds a Silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our commitment to advance gender equality in higher education. The University is a member of the Race Equality Charter and is a Stonewall Scotland Diversity Champion, actively promoting LGBT equality. The University has a range of initiatives to support a family friendly working environment. See our University Initiatives website for further information. University Initiatives website:

Funding Notes

A PhD studentship is available in the group of Dr Adam Kirrander (School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh; View Website). The studentship is fully funded for 42 months and covers tuition fees and an annual stipend (starting at £15,285per annum) for a candidate satisfying EPSRC criteria:
View Website

How good is research at University of Edinburgh in Chemistry?
(joint submission with University of St Andrews)

FTE Category A staff submitted: 43.30

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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