Academic Positions Europe

Delft University of Technology, Kavli Institute of Nanoscience, Netherlands

PhD position: Detection of magnon motion through atom manipulation

Image: atomic scale data storage (Nature Nanotechnology 2016)


The dynamics of magnetic materials, for example the flipping of a bit on a hard disk drive, are governed by the behavior of collective quantum excitations such as magnons (spin waves). Magnons can be viewed as quantum-mechanical quasiparticles propagating at tremendous speed through the material. Our research focuses on understanding the physics of these quasiparticles. We do this by engineering and assembling magnetic materials literally one atom at a time, using scanning tunneling micrsocopy (STM). 

Job description

In order to visualise the motion of magnons, you will explore possibilities to construct atomic scale detectors that can probe the local presence of a magnon. You will make use of our state-of-the-art scanning tunneling microscopes operating near 1 Kelvin. This equipment, combined with our unique know-how to engineer the locations of thousands of individual atoms (see, gives our lab a worldwide leading position in the field of atomic scale engineering.


Our group is part of the Department of Quantum Nanoscience in the world-famous Kavli Institute of Nanoscience at Delft University of Technology. Delft is a lively university town close to larger cities as The Hague and Rotterdam (both < 15 minutes by train).


We are looking for an enthusiastic, talented candidate with an MSc degree in physics or a related field. Experience with scanning probe microscopy, vacuum technology and/or cryogenics is desirable, but certainly not required. Most importantly, the candidate should be fascinated by quantum mechanics and its mysteries. Fluency in English is essential.

Conditions of employment

The appointment will be for a period of four years, which includes time for writing the PhD thesis. The salary will be up to a maximum of € 2779 gross per month, and is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8% and an end-of-year bonus of 8.33%. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a 30% deduction on the income taxes.

Information and application

For more information about this position, please feel free to contact Prof. Sander Otte, phone: +31 (0)15 2788998, e-mail:, or look at To apply, please e-mail a detailed CV including a list of possible references. The search will continue until a suitable candidate has been found.

Delft University of Technology, Kavli Institute of Nanoscience

The Kavli Institute of Nanoscience Delft ( is an intellectually inspiring environment of world-leading scientists that perform pioneering research to understand the nanoworld – from quantum physics to nanobiology

Application details

Application deadline:

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