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PhD position on Photonic integrated circuits for metrology sensors

PhD position on Photonic integrated circuits for metrology sensors

Electrical Engineering
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Job description

Optical sensors are extensively used in the semiconductor industry, for highly accurate metrology on the (sub-)nanometer scale. Transistor scaling, given by Moore’s Law, is already down to gate lengths of 2 nm, with a further decrease at the horizon. This means that metrology, during and after the manufacturing process, i.e., the measurement of wafer positions in all dimensions, and the determination of layer thicknesses on the wafer, has to be known at all times within a fraction of that technology node. Moreover, this has to be done at high throughput.
To provide this accuracy, at high throughput, the vision of our industrial partner ASML is to use a parallel array of sensors, enabled by photonic integration, also known as optical chips. This can then be built into state of the art semiconductor manufacturing tools.

Photonic integrated circuits combine photonic components, such as lasers, photodetectors, modulators, waveguides and filters, on a single piece of semiconductor material. As such, a complete optical system can often be miniaturized into a small, cubic-centimeters-sized, package (see, e.g., this link: Optical chip based sensors are interesting, because they can be ultra-broadband, utilize vibration-free phase control, and are compact.

In this project, in collaboration with partners ASML and the University of Twente, we will develop a laser-based metrology sensor, with maximum control of the spatial and temporal coherence of light. Our approach is scalable over a broad range of wavelengths, i.e., multiple octaves. At TU/e we will be focusing on novel concepts to achieve this, and experimentally implement these in our leading indium phosphide based photonic integration platform.
As a PhD student, you will create, design and experimentally validate these new ideas for the ultimate control of light, with a wide application range, also beyond only metrology. Since Eindhoven is located in the heart of a leading semiconductor and photonics ecosystem, close collaboration with a variety of academic and industrial partners can be anticipated.

The team

As a PhD student, you will be part of a dynamic and ambitious environment, with plenty of opportunities to develop yourself. Our Institute for Photonic Integration (IPI) at TU/e consists
of five closely-cooperating research groups, focusing on optical systems, photonic integration technology, materials research. You will be part of the Photonic Integration group (PhI) which has about 45 members, 20 of which are PhD students. Our laboratory facilities are extensive and state of the art.

Job requirements

  • Master’s degree in Physics, Electrical Engineering, or similar;
  • Affinity for photonic devices and circuits;
  • Strong background in optics, photonics and/or semiconductor devices, where experience with modelling and design is of an advantage;
  • Experience in experimental work, ideally in an optical, photonics and/or laser lab;
  • Ability to work with experts from a broad range of scientific and technology backgrounds;
  • Fluent spoken and written English.

Conditions of employment

  • A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university with the possibility to present your work at international conferences.
  • A full-time employment for four years, with an intermediate evaluation (go/no-go) after nine months.
  • To develop your teaching skills, you will spend 10% of your employment on teaching tasks.
  • To support you during your PhD and to prepare you for the rest of your career, you will make a Training and Supervision plan and you will have free access to a personal development program for PhD students (PROOF program).
  • A gross monthly salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement for Dutch Universities.
  • Additionally, an annual holiday allowance of 8% of the yearly salary, plus a year-end allowance of 8.3% of the annual salary.
  • Should you come from abroad and comply with certain conditions, you can make use of the so-called ‘30% facility’, which permits you not to pay tax on 30% of your salary.
  • A broad package of fringe benefits, including an excellent technical infrastructure, moving expenses, and savings schemes.
  • Family-friendly initiatives are in place, such as an international spouse program, and excellent on-campus children day care and sports facilities.

We are searching for suitable candidate in anticipation of a grant agreement to be signed.
When official approval is received, we can definitively commit to hire the candidate.

Information and application

More information

Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more? Please contact
prof. Martijn Heck (m.heck[at]

For information about terms of employment, click here or contact HR services Flux (HRServices.flux[at]

Please visit to find out more about working at TU/e!


We invite you to submit a complete application by using the 'apply now'-button on this page.
The application should include a:

  • a brief letter motivating your interest and suitability for the position,
  • a detailed curriculum vitae including research experience,
  • transcripts of academic records indicating courses taken (including grades),
  • half-page summary of your MSc thesis,
  • contact details of two relevant references (email, phone number).

We look forward to your application and will screen it as soon as we have received it.
Screening will continue until the position has been filled.

We do not respond to applications that are sent to us in a different way.

Please keep in mind you can upload only 5 documents up to 2 MB each. If necessary please combine files.