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PostDoc Single Molecule Tracking of Ice-Binders by Super-Resolution Microscopy

PostDoc Single Molecule Tracking of Ice-Binders by Super-Resolution Microscopy

(Post-doctoral) Researcher
Irène Curie Fellowship
Chemical Engineering and Chemistry
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Reference number

Job description

Join us – we look forward to welcome you to our Self-Organizing Soft Matter Research Group at Eindhoven University of Technology!

We are seeking a highly motivated Postdoctoral Researcher with a passion for quantitative microscopy and single molecule studies to join our team to study the behavior of ice-binders at ice/water interfaces and how this relates to their activity. In this exciting role, you will be working in a vibrant and international research group aiming to identify structure-activity relations for natural and man-made  ice-binders to reverse engineer novel materials tailored to block ice growth, slow down ice recrystallization, and/or promote ice nucleation as desired.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Conduct high quality, curiosity-driven, original and independent research focusing on quantitative super-resolution microscopy
  • Collaborate with a multi-disciplinary team of scientists and engineers
  • Present research findings at conferences and publish in top-tier scientific journals
  • Mentor and support junior researchers in the lab

Eindhoven University of Technology

Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) is one of Europe's leading research universities.

The Eindhoven area, in the southern part of the Netherlands, is one of Europe's top 'innovation ecosystems', with many high-tech companies and institutes. TU/e is intertwined with many of these companies and institutes, and research at TU/e is characterized by a combination of academic excellence, industrial relevance and societal interweaving.

Eindhoven University of Technology is a community of scientists, supporting staff, students and partners. People are the heart and soul of TU/e, so it is of great importance to safeguard the distinctive Eindhoven atmosphere, creating a personal, welcoming and vibrant environment that enables individuals and groups to grow professionally and personally.

The department Chemical Engineering and Chemistry is one of the nine departments of Eindhoven University of Technology. It was established in 1957, shortly after the university was founded. The department is located in the Helix and Matrix buildings on the TU/e campus. The candidate will closely collaborate with researchers within the departments of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Applied Physics, and the Institute for Complex Molecular Systems, all of which are located on the TU/e campus at walking distance.

Job Description

Ice-binding proteins (IBPs) are natural ice-binders that offer protection against freezing to survive at subzero temperatures. Our group aims to unravel how biological and engineered ice-binders function, so that we can create customized chemical cryoprotectants for biomedical and other applications. We do not yet know how natural and synthetic ice-binders work, but it is clear that their activity is closely related to the way in which they interact with ice. Recently, we reported sub-zero nanoscopy experiments which allowed us to study for the first time the interfacial dynamics of ice-bound IBPs at the single molecule level (see PNAS publication for more information). In this project you will build upon these pioneering experiments to study the interaction with ice of biological and engineered ice-binders at the single molecule level aiming to better understand how these block ice growth, shape ice crystals, inhibit ice recrystallization and control ice nucleation. You will work in close collaboration with other group members, who design, prepare, and/or study biological and (bio)synthetic ice-binders and explore their potential in cryopreservation and other applications.

Job requirements

  • PhD in Bionanoscience, (Bio)physical Chemistry, (Bio)physics, Molecular (Life) Sciences, or related area, obtained within the last four years
  • Passionate about soft matter science, (bio)physics, and microscopy
  • Strong qualifications and expertise in using advanced optical tools (e.g. fluorescence and/or super-resolution microscopy) for single molecule (bio)physics
  • Excellent programming (e.g. Python, Matlab) and data analysis skills for processing and interpreting experimental (single molecule tracking) data
  • Familiarity with crystallization and microfluidics, (computer-aided) protein engineering, and/or cryobiology
  • Ability to conduct high quality academic research, demonstrated by an outstanding PhD thesis, publications in reputable scientific journals and presentations at international meetings
  • Strong motivation to do excellent, original, fundamental research.
  • Proficiency in the English language, excellent written and oral communication and leadership skills. Note that there is no Dutch language requirement.
  • Independent and goal-oriented scientist. Team player and able to work in a dynamic, interdisciplinary, and international context.

Conditions of employment

A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university, in an interdisciplinary setting and within an international network. You will work on a beautiful, green campus within walking distance of the central train station. In addition, we offer you:

  • A full-time employment for 1 year initially with possibility to extend by two years
  • Salary in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, scale 10 (monthly salary gross min. € 3.877,- and max. € 5.090,-).
  • A year-end bonus of 8.3% and annual vacation pay of 8%.
  • A TU/e Postdoc Association that helps you to build a stronger and broader academic and personal network, and offers tailored support, training and workshops.
  • High-quality training programs on general skills, didactics and topics related to research and valorization.
  • An excellent technical infrastructure, on-campus children's day care and sports facilities.
  • Access to state-of-the-art equipment and facilities
  • Collaborative opportunities with leading experts in the field
  • Partially paid parental leave and an allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • A Staff Immigration Team is available for international candidates, as are a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) and a compensation for moving expenses.

Information and application

More information

Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more?
Please contact the hiring manager Ilja Voets, i.voets[at] or +31 40 247 5303.

Visit our website for more information about the application process or the conditions of employment. You can also contact Leo van Houten, l.v.houten[at] or +31 40 247 8269.

Are you inspired and would like to know more about working at TU/e? Please visit our career page.


Join our team and take the next step in your research career. If you have a passion for innovation and a drive to push the boundaries of science, we would love to hear from you. Please submit a complete application by using the 'apply now'-button on this page. The application should include a:

  • Cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position.
  • Curriculum vitae, including a list of your publications and the contact information of three references.
  • A letter of recommendation from one or more of your references.
  • List of five self-selected ‘best publications’.

Screening of applications will continue until the position has been filled.

Don't miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work on pioneering research in the field of Polymerization-Induced Electrostatic Self-Assembly!