PhD studentships on the physics of rarefied gases (V34.3039)

PhD studentships on the physics of rarefied gases

Department of Applied Physics
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Job description

The Turbulence and Vortex Dynamics (WDY) group at the Eindhoven University of Technology has one opening for a PhD student position on the physics of rarefied gases.

Job description
The Turbulence and Vortex Dynamics (WDY) group at the Eindhoven University of Technology (The Netherlands, has one opening for a PhD student position on the physics of rarefied gases.

Moore’s law, which states that computing power doubles every two years, is enabled by perpetual advances in semi-conductor technology. To sustain Moore’s law in the coming decades, very fundamental challenges must be confronted. One of these challenges pertains to heat and mass transport in the rarefied gas flows that occur in the exposure region of next-generation Extreme Ultra Violet (EUV) Photo-Lithography Machines (PLM). The power of the EUV light leads to local thermal expansions of the wafer, causing aberrations in the printed nanometer structures, and to discharge of debris in the exposure region. To control the thermal expansion and contain the contamination, small amounts of gas are injected into the exposure region. However, as the exposure process occurs under near-vacuum conditions the resulting gas flow is rarefied. Heat and mass transport in rarefied gas flows are highly complex, and contemporary understanding of these phenomena is very limited. The aim of the RARETRANS project is to investigate these phenomena and to develop new models and computer-simulation methods to assist developers in designing the next-generation EUV PLM.

Project description
The selected candidate will perform numerical simulations and develop novel computer algorithms and computer codes in order to investigate the fundamental physics of rarefied gases. The scientific focus of the project includes the study of the dynamics of small particles under rarefied flow conditions, in presence of thermal effects and realistic flow geometries. The student will employ and further develop hybrid codes based on Lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) and Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC). The LBM solver is accurate and efficient for hydrodynamics conditions, i.e. Knudsen number up to 0.1, while the DSMC is accurate and computationally efficient under rarefied conditions, i.e. Knudsen above 0.1. The codes -developed in our group- are optimized and fully parallelized (for use on super-computers) and have been coupled in order to achieve a good trade-off between accuracy and efficiency in complex geometries.

The student is expected to considerably improve both codes, as well as their coupling, in order to be able to study the dynamics of fully-resolved moving solid particles with inclusion of thermal effects. The student is expected to perform state-of-the-art large-scale numerical simulation on computer cluster and to analyse and interpret the data produced. He/she will closely interact with ASML BV, as well as with the other PhD students involved in the project.

Job requirements

We seek highly talented, enthusiastic, and exceptionally motivated candidates with an MSc. degree in Physics or engineering. The candidate must be able to demonstrate good programming skills, the drive and capacity to tackle different aspects of a complex problem with large independence, the capabilities to work in a team, strong communication skills, including fluency in written and spoken English.

Conditions of employment

We offer a full-time appointment for four years, a gross monthly salary from € 2222,00 (first year) to € 2840,00 (fourth year) in line with the Collective Agreement for Dutch Universities and an attractive package of fringe benefits, including end-of-year allowance, a personal development program for PhD students (Proof program), and excellent sport facilities.

When fulfilling a PhD position at the NWO Institutes Organisation (formerly FOM), you will get the status of junior scientist. You will have an employee status and can participate in all the employee benefits the NWO Institutes Organisation (NWO-I) offers. You will get a contract for four years. Your salary will be up to a maximum of 2,840 euro gross per month. The salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8 percent and an end-of-year bonus of 8.33 percent. 
You are supposed to have a thesis finished at the end of your four year term with NWO-I. 
A training programme is part of the agreement. You and your supervisor will make up a plan for the additional education and supervising that you specifically need. This plan also defines which teaching activities you will be responsible (up to a maximum of ten percent of your time). The conditions of employment of NWO-I are laid down in the Collective Labour Agreement for Research Centres (Cao-Onderzoekinstellingen), more exclusive information is available at this website under Personeelsinformatie.

Information and application

If interested in this position, please upload an application letter, CV, and a list of grades obtained in relevant education programmes (typically B.Sc. and M.Sc.) by using the 'apply now' button on this page.

Candidates are urged to apply as soon as possible, as selection will start immediately.

For additional information, contact Prof. dr. F. Toschi (


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