The Fritz Haber Institute (FHI) in Berlin is one of the oldest and most renowned research institutes within the Max Planck Society (MPG), Germany's most successful scientific organization. At the FHI, researchers from all over the world are engaged in basic research in the fields of physics and chemistry at interfaces and surfaces, catalysis research, and molecular physics. The Department of Inorganic Chemistry ( focuses on establishing fundamental understanding on the functionality of industrially applied heterogeneous catalysts. Key aspects of our research involve synthesis, state-of-the-art characterization, concept and method development, and operando studies to obtain insights into their working structures. We aim at finding structures responsible for activity at gas/solid, liquid/solid, and solid/solid interfaces and the origin of deactivation within complex systems.

Within the DFG Priority Program SPP 2080 "Catalysts and reactors under dynamic conditions for energy storage and conversion" the Inorganic Chemistry department of the FHI is offering 

1 Postdoctoral position in the electron microscopy group

to investigate the degradation of solid oxide electrolysis cells under working and quasi in situ conditions. High temperature solid oxide electrolysis cells are promising candidates for efficient chemical energy conversion. However, their lifetimes are limited by rapid deactivation. Understanding the structural origin of their deactivation may lead to new design concepts for improved and prolonged performance.

This position will offer the unique opportunity of combing different operando and quasi in situ techniques for electron microscopy, including environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), with state-of-the-art aberration corrected high resolution TEM and electron spectroscopy. Experiments will be complemented by operando X-ray spectroscopy measurements at the synchrotron beamline BESSY II (Electronic Structure Group). Furthermore, a close collaboration with the Theory department of the FHI and the RWTH Aachen has already been established.

The postdoctoral position is initially limited to two years with the option for an extension.

Your profile

We expect candidates to have:
Please submit your application via our online application portal as soon as possible but latest by February 28, 2022 including the following documents:
For more information, please contact Dr. Thomas Lunkenbein (, Department of Inorganic Chemistry, Fritz-Haber-Institut der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Faradayweg 4-6, 14195 Berlin

We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.
Max Planck Society
The Max-Planck-Gesellschaft endeavours to achieve gender equality and diversity. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society aims to increase the participation of women in research. Therefore, applications by women are particularly welcome. The Max Planck Society is also committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals.


The Fritz Haber Institute (FHI) is located in the quiet south-west of Gemany’s capital Berlin, which is a large, tolerant and cosmopolitan city. Berlin offers a wide variety of culture, art, music, and outdoor opportunities.

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