The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) with its 1,100 employees has gained an excellent reputation as an international competence centre for environmental sciences. We are part of the largest scientific organisation in Germany, the Helmholtz association. Our mission: Our research seeks to find a balance between social development and the long-term protection of our natural resources.
The Department of Environmental Engineering offers a PhD position which is embedded in the project “Optimized Iron-Biochar composites” funded by DFG (Germany) as joint collaborative project with NSF (China).
PhD position (m/f)
Subject: Optimized iron-biochar composites for degrading halogenated compounds in enviromental compartmentsProject start: 1st April 2018. Working time 65% (25,35 hours per week), limited to 3 years.
This project aims at the development and testing of novel metal-carbon composite materials for the degradation of halogenated organic contaminants in environmental compartments. As injectable colloidal particles these composites are envisaged for in-situ remediation of contaminated groundwater and soil. In this respect, the carbon carrier shall provide suitable colloidal properties and act as adsorbent for contaminants. Embedded metal species (Fe, Pd) function as reagents/catalysts for contaminant chemical degradation.
The candidate will be responsible for lab-scale synthesis of the composites, their characterization including material and colloidal properties and reactivity testing in batch and column reactors. The PhD project shall explore the potential of the metal-carbon composite particles as reagents/catalysts for various reductive (Fe(0) or Pd-Fe(0)-driven) and oxidative (e.g. persulfate-driven) degradation reactions. It is expected to provide a deeper mechanistic understanding on reaction mechanisms and structure-property correlations in order to enable the targeted design of such composites for environmental remediation.
The candidate should have a master degree in Chemistry. Engineers in Material Science, Chemical or Environmental Engineering with profound experience in experimental work and a strong background in chemistry are also eligible to apply. Knowledge in hydrochar synthesis by hydrothermal carbonization, environmental catalysis and/or nano-/microparticle applications is an additional asset. She/he should be motivated to work in an international, multidisciplinary team with specific emphasis on collaboration with the Chinese partners including research visits in China.
- Top level interdisciplinary research at a research centre which enjoys an excellent reputation within Germany as well as internationally
- Excellent technical facilities
- Work in inter-disciplinary and multinational teams
- Excellent links to national and international research networks
- Support and optimal training courses by our graduate school (HIGRADE)
- Remuneration in accordance with the TVöD public-sector pay grade 13