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PhD Position – Chemistry and Materials Science – Novel Photoresists for Multimaterial 3D and 4D Printing

About This PhD Project

Project Description

We offer a PhD Position at the NeptunLab. The NeptunLab is the highly interdisciplinary research group of Prof. Bastian E. Rapp (owner of the chair of Process Technology) at the Department of Microsystems Technology (IMTEK) at the University of Freiburg. Research interests include the development of novel materials, technologies and processes for structuring materials and industrial applications. The work of the NeptunLab is published in the most important international journals including Lab-on-a-Chip, Advanced Materials, Angewandte Chemie and Nature and has been featured in national and international radio and print media including the BBC, the New York Times and the Discovery Channel.

Man-made materials are usually designed to be unchangeable in their form and structure. Natural materials however are known to adjust to their surroundings, like a plant orienting its leaves towards the sun. The concept of 4D printing describes materials, that, after they have been additively manufactured, can changes their physical form or shape in a controlled fashion. This project aims at generating dynamically responsive materials that are capable of changing their physical shapes but also their internal properties. Potential application examples include elastically deformable materials with changing modulus, membranes for textiles that change their pore sizes upon change in heat or materials that change their absorption properties under different light conditions.
In this project novel, highly precise additive manufacturing techniques for 4D printing will be developed. The novel techniques will be based on stereolithography and will allow for the internal structuring of the printed materials through multi-material/multi-parameter printing: Based on polymerization at different wavelength, an internal structure will be introduced into the polymer. The polymerization chemistries must be orthogonal in order to allow for a simultaneous structuring process. In this way, novel thermoresponsive polymers will be generated and structured on a micron level. This project is part of the the ZEISS Forschungscluster Interactive and programmable materials (IPROM), with a total of 10 research groups from Freiburg working on novel concepts of 4D printing.

Activities and Responsibilities
• Development of novel photoresist mixtures for 4D printing
• Introduction of orthogonal chemical functionalities
• Micron level structuring of materials
• Development of adequate post processing
• Performance evaluation of printed materials

Qualification Profile
• Master’s degree/Bachelor’s degree/Studies in chemistry, materials science or related subjects
• Profound knowledge of photopolymerization processes and stereolithography is required
• Knowledge of protective groups in organic chemistry as well as polymer chemistry are beneficial.
• Excellent academic track record
• Excellent English skills in reading and writing
• You should be a team player with ambitions who can conduct research projects independently
• You should be a creative mind without causing excessive chaos around you
• You should be able to structure and document your work properly

• An interdisciplinary work environment with a team of motivated scientists that strive to develop clever solutions for scientific as well as industrial problems
• Well-funded projects with access to excellent state-of-the art infrastructure, generous lab space and scientific equipment
• An aspiring young team with great emphasis on publications and publicity
• A lab structure that promotes the development of the individual members and fosters open-minded scientific discussions
• A strong focus on the career development of the candidate including submitting to and attending the most relevant international conferences and summer schools
• An environment that supports start-up mentality – if your research is industrially applicable and promising, we will move towards commercialization of your solution
• Payment of TV-L 13 75% (full time)
• Depending on the performance of the candidate the PhD degree is generally finished within three years

Your Application
Please consult the “before you apply” section of our homepage

Make sure you attach all relevant documents (pdf format preferred)
• Letter of motivation: Why do you apply for this position?
• Curriculum Vitae
• Academic track record (recent grades)
• References


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