At imec we are developing an integrated photovoltaic-electrochemical (PV-EC) system consisting of a multi-junction solar cell and an electrochemical reactor to produce chemical products such as hydrogen, methanol or ethanol directly from water, CO2 and sunlight. Such solar-to-molecule (solar fuel) technology is key for the transition towards 100% sustainable energy as it provides the means for the production of sustainable fuels and chemicals.
The goal of this postdoc position is to realize such an integrated PV-EC system without the use of conversion stages. This means the voltage of the cell or series connection of cells will be applied without intermediate stage to the electrochemical part, either in a wireless monolithic or in a close proximity wired design. One could think about planar embodiments for such an integrated device but alternative embodiments which simplify the supply of reagents and the evacuation of reaction products as well as the separation of gaseous and liquid products would be highly attractive. The work will also comprise the evaluation of the solar-to-molecule conversion efficiency and the time-dependent behavior of the integrated device as input to modelling activities.
You will join our rapidly growing international team of researchers, engineers, technicians working on the topic. You will deliver research results beyond the state-of-the-art, will be involved in multiple international projects with companies and research organizations, and will generate creative research ideas with industrial relevance. Furthermore, you will guide the work of graduate and internship students supporting those research activities.
This position is in the Photovoltaics Cell and Module (PVCM) team of imec and it is located in Leuven, Belgium. You will be also affiliated to Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, one of the highest ranked research universities in Europe and worldwide. The new state-of-the-art facilities for PV and upscaling of storage technologies in EnergyVille, Genk, Belgium, will also be leveraged in the project.
- have a Ph.D in Science or Engineering that you have completed <5 years ago;
- are highly motivated and enthusiastic about the research topic;
- have hands on approach in the technical drawing and test of electrical energy conversion system.
- have documented experience in one or more of the following areas: electrochemical processes, PV technology; fluid dynamics; semiconductor physics, semiconductor technology. Experience in prototyping and building experimental setup is recommended/a plus.
- take initiative and work independently, while being part of a team;
- are able to schedule your work according to project deadlines and deliverables;
- have excellent written and oral communication skills in English with an outstanding track record of journal publications and presentations at international conferences;
As a postdoc researcher you will receive training, coaching and networking opportunities to become a recognized international expert in the field.
This postdoctoral position is funded by imec through KU Leuven. Because of the specific financing statute which targets international mobility for postdocs, only candidates who did not stay or work/study in Belgium for more than 24 months in the past 3 years can be considered for the position (short stays such as holiday, participation in conferences, etc. are not taken into account).
We offer you the opportunity to join one of the world’s premier research centers in nanotechnology at its headquarters in Leuven, Belgium. With your talent, passion and expertise, you’ll become part of a team that makes the impossible possible. Together, we shape the technology that will determine the society of tomorrow.
We are proud of our open, multicultural, and informal working environment with ample possibilities to take initiative and show responsibility. We commit to supporting and guiding you in this process; not only with words but also with tangible actions. Through imec.academy, 'our corporate university', we actively invest in your development to further your technical and personal growth.
We are aware that your valuable contribution makes imec a top player in its field. Your energy and commitment are therefore appreciated by means of a competitive scholarship.