Information about the division and the project
The research at the Materials Physics Division at the Department of Physics focuses on the studies of the fundamental properties of materials ranging from soft to hard hierarchical materials, liquids and glasses, complex oxides, and quantum matter. Our research aims to understand the relationships between the microscopic interactions and the macroscopic functions of the materials to develop and optimize the next generations of materials that could be implemented in future technological devices. Various experiments are conducted in our home laboratories, but also at large-scale facilities all over the world.

The group has excellent expertise in X-ray and neutron scattering/spectroscopy techniques and is involved in the new instrumental developments that Sweden is implementing with the MAX IV and European Spallation Source (ESS) facilities. Over many years we have also developed a strong and fruitful collaboration with theoreticians, both locally and internationally.

At present, the division comprises five faculty members, two assistant professors, eleven PhD students, seven postdocs, and one technician. We strive to provide a stimulating, motivating, and collaborative research environment. More information can be found in the Materials Physics website.

The general focus of this PhD project is based on the investigation of magnetic and electronic properties of quantum materials under extreme conditions. In general, quantum materials display a delicate interplay of several interactions (charge, spin, orbital, and lattice) on the atomic-scale. Applying external stimuli (e.g., magnetic field or pressure) can give rise to unexpected exotic phenomena. Uniaxial pressure (strain) is a crucial tuning parameter for obtaining a fundamental understanding of quantum matter and, eventually, developing its functionality for applications.

One of the main topics of this PhD project will be studying the emergence and stability of topological magnetic materials such as skyrmion in bulk and low-dimensional systems, using state-of-the-art neutron scattering/spectroscopy techniques. Magnetic skyrmions are nanometer-sized objects with non-trivial spin structures, which can be moved using a low-current density. These properties make skyrmions ideal candidates for achieving high storage density, high-data transfer rate, and low power consumption.

This project's primary goals are to understand the effect of uniaxial pressure on bulk skyrmion lattice and strain effect on novel thin-film/multilayer skyrmion systems. The combination of pressure (strain) and neutron scattering offers a unique opportunity to determine the underlying microscopic magnetic interactions. The neutron studies will also be complemented with additional x-ray (electronic properties) and muon methods. The thin films/heterostructures will be grown by sputtering and/or pulsed laser deposition techniques on selected substrates to study how strain, dimensionality, and interface effects can tune the skyrmion lattices. Furthermore, the proposed project defines an ambitious program tightly connected with the new instrumental developments that Sweden is implementing with the MAX IV and European Spallation Source (ESS).

The project is a part of SwedNess, the national graduate school for Neutron research. The graduate school aims at strengthening Sweden’s long-term competence and competitiveness within the area of neutron science by providing its students with research training and a foundation for networking. For more information please visit the SwedNess website.

Major responsibilities
During the PhD project you will have the task to synthesize transition metal thin films/multilayers, conduct their characterizations both in-house and at large scale facilities, and analyse the data. As part of the project, you will be expected to submit beamtimes proposals at neutron facilities, communicate research results both orally at international conferences, and in writing in scientific journals.

The position generally also includes teaching on Chalmers' undergraduate level or performing other duties corresponding to 20 per cent of working hours.

Position summary
Full-time temporary employment. The employment is limited to a maximum of five years. The employment is tied to successful completion of department evaluations after one and three years.

To qualify as a PhD student, you must have a master's level degree corresponding to at least 240 higher education credits in physics (applied physics, engineering physics, materials physics, chemical physics) or an equivalent degree, with sound knowledge and interest in condensed matter physics and materials physics.

The position requires good communication skills in written and spoken English. Suppose you do not have English or a Scandinavian language as your mother tongue, in that case, you need to provide documentation of good communication skills in English, typically evidenced by an English language test and/or exemplified during the interview process before admission.

Chalmers continuously strives to be an attractive employer. Equality and diversity are substantial foundations in all activities at Chalmers.

Our offer to you
Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the dynamic city of Gothenburg
Read more about working at Chalmers and our benefits for employees. Chalmers offers Swedish courses.

Application procedure
The application should be marked with Ref 20200567 and written in English. The application should be sent electronically and be attached as pdf-files, as below:

CV: (Please name the document: CV, Family name, Ref. number)
• CV
• Other, for example previous employments or leadership qualifications and positions of trust.
• Two references that we can contact.

Personal letter: (Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, Ref. number)
1-3 pages where you:
• Introduce yourself
• Describe your previous experience of relevance for the position (e.g. education, thesis work and, if applicable, any other research activities)
• Describe your future goals and future research focus

Other documents:
• Copies of bachelor and/or master’s thesis.
• Attested copies and transcripts of completed education, grades and other certificates, e.g. TOEFL test results.

Please use the button at the foot of the page to reach the application form. The files may be compressed (zipped).

Application deadline: 1st June 2021

For questions, please contact:
Assistant Professor Yasmine Sassa, Division Materials Physics
E-mail:, phone: +46 31 772 60 88

Dr. Marc Janoschek, Paul Scherrer Institute, Lab. for Neutron and Muon Instrumentation, Switzerland
E-mail:, phone: +41 56 310 49 87

*** Chalmers declines to consider all offers of further announcement publishing or other types of support for the recruiting process in connection with this position. *** 

Department of Physics at Chalmers - home of the Graphene Flagship
Stimulated by major needs and challenges in science and a sustainable society, the ambition of the department of Physics is to foster a creative environment for academic research, learning and outreach. We provide a competitive advantage by linking our top-level international and interdisciplinary academic performance in the areas of material science, nanotechnology and energy research with world-leading industrial R&D&I projects. We address a wide array of experimental, computational, methodological and theoretical challenges, from fundamental physics research, through the development of new materials such as graphene to direct industrial projects generating new inventions. We have a strong learning commitment on all levels from undergraduate to PhD studies where physics meet engineering. We are situated in a stimulating and creative environment with newly renovated facilities. The department is the major part of Gothenburg Physics Centre – a collaboration between five departments at Chalmers and Gothenburg University.

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