Vacancies University of Twente

Postdoctoral Researcher Position Nanolayer Extreme UV membranes

The XUV Optics group is embedded in the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology (, which is one of the largest nanotechnology research institutes in the world, delivering competitive and successful high-quality research. It uses a unique structure, which unites scientific disciplines, and builds fruitful international cooperation to excel in science and education. The institute employs 500 people of which 275 are PhD’s or PostDocs. With its unique NanoLab facilities the institute holds 1250 m2 of cleanroom space and state-of-the-art research equipment. It applies an internationally appealing and multidisciplinary approach by combining physics, electrical engineering, chemistry, materials science and mathematics.

Job description

We are looking for a highly motivated and skilled post-doctoral researcher to carry out a project on stacked, ultrathin films of nanoscale thickness. By tuning the layer thickness, these layered stacks can reflect or transmit short-wavelength light from the ultraviolet to the soft X-ray range. When designed for the Extreme UV case, e.g. 13 nanometer, these multilayers have enabled the sensational development of a high-resolution lithographic technology for the manufacture of integrated circuits.

At the basis of this application was forefront fundamental research by the Foundation FOM and the MESA+ Institute ( The Industrial Focus Group XUV Optics at MESA+ has now started a new multidisciplinary research programme to study the thin film physics and chemistry of transmissive Extreme UV optics. Ultrathin transparent membranes are being developed for protection of sensitive surfaces in EUV photolithography. Though successful demonstrations are given, future applications may need improved properties: the membranes should be sufficiently thin to allow high transmission of EUV light, but still strong enough to prevent sagging and other mechanical deformations. The lifetime of such membranes is intrinsically linked to thermal loading under EUV illumination in a chemically active environment.

The research will take place in a state of the art thin film laboratory within the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology (Enschede), in collaboration with the lithography equipment manufacturer ASML (Veldhoven).


As a post-doc researcher in this project:

  • You are a great team player in a team working on thin film physics and chemistry of layered materials. You will have a senior role and can be involved in projects of several team members.
  • Your ultimate goal is developing the key material science that is required to address challenges in making ultra-thin transparent membranes;
  • You will create new generations of membrane structures that combine high mechanical strength with low absorption of EUV light. Such membranes may consist of multiple layers that should address specific requirements, e.g. layers to provide mechanical strength, combined with layers that target heat dissipation and chemical inertness.
  • You will understand and control the growth strains and ultimate tensile strength of candidate materials. As such, you will synthesize structures of thin films using in house available clean room and thin film technologies.
  • You will investigate the relation between the microstructure of the materials and their macroscopic properties.
  • You will develop basic material science in parallel with the development of the process of creating free standing films.
  • You will collaborate with the lithography equipment manufacturer ASML (Veldhoven); you will share knowledge by regular meetings and visits with all involved scientists.

Your profile

  • You have a PhD in physics, materials science, physical chemistry or engineering or a related topic.
  • You have affinity with the realization of physical or chemical depositions of nanometer thin films (MEMS, CMOS or related) and their analysis (optical and mechanical).
  • You have cleanroom nano fabrication or general clean room process skills.
  • You have excellent experimental and theoretical skills.
  • You are creative and like to push boundaries.
  • You are highly motivated, enthusiastic, have good team spirit and like to work in an internationally oriented environment.
  • You are fluent in English.

Our offer

You will be appointed on a fulltime position for two years, with possible extension, within a very stimulating scientific environment. The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues.

Starting salary ranges from € 3111,-- to € 4084,--. gross per month depending on experience and qualifications in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) of the Dutch Universities;

  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%;
  • A solid pension scheme;
  • Minimum of 29 holidays in case of full-time employment;
  • Professional and personal development programs;
  • A high degree of responsibility and independence, while collaborating with close colleagues, researchers and other university staff is strongly encouraged.

Information and Application
The start of the project is as soon as possible.

Applications should include an application/motivation letter, emphasizing your specific interest and motivation, a detailed CV (resume), a publication list, contact details of referees, and an academic transcript of B.Sc. and M.Sc. education. An interview and a scientific presentation will be part of the selection procedure.

For more information about the position, you can contact Prof. Fred Bijkerk at, +31620573555, +31534892863 or Dr. Robbert van de Kruijs at, +31 534894415, +31 616422790.

The organization

The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which leads change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university of the Netherlands; divided over five faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. We have a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out groundbreaking research.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status or disability status. Because of our diversity values we do particularly support women to apply.

Within the TNW Faculty (Faculty of Science & Technology) of the University of Twente some 700 staff members and 2000 students are involved in training and research on the interface of chemical technology, applied physics and biomedical technology. Fields of application include sustainable energy, process technology and materials science, nanotechnology and technical medicine. Research, which enjoys a high profile both at home and internationally, has been accommodated in the multidisciplinary research institutes MESA+ and MIRA. The faculty works together intensively with industrial partners and researchers in the Netherlands and abroad and conducts extensive research for external commissioning parties and funders.

Postdoctoral Researcher Position Nanolayer Extreme UV membranes
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