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 heterogeneous catalysts. Within the project “Membrane-assisted Ethylene Synthesis over Nanostructured Tandem Catalysts” (MemCat) funded by the European Commission we have an open

Postdoctoral position (m/f/d)

Mechanistic Studies on Tandem Catalysts for the Chemical Utilization of

Anthropogenic Carbon Dioxide

Your tasks

The long-term vision of MemCat is to give access to green e-Polymers by providing carbon-negative plastic precursors using anthropogenic CO2 and green hydrogen. MemCat targets to deliver a proof-of-concept for the direct conversion of carbon dioxide to ethylene by realizing tandem catalysts, which through nano-structuring will allow for consecutive CO2-to-methanol and methanol-to-ethylene transformations to occur in the same operational window. The successful candidate will contribute to a fundamental understanding of the parameters governing the reactions through detailed mechanistic studies of the tandem catalysts and thus contribute to catalyst design.

    Your profile

    We are looking for a highly motivated, creative chemist who can work independently and is able to quickly become familiar with new methods. Experimental work will focus on kinetic and mechanistic studies of the tandem reaction performing transient experiments and using isotopes. The work also includes the general physico-chemical investigation of the catalysts, for example by adsorption studies and synchrotron-based experiments. The investigations are carried out in close cooperation with theory. An interest in modern methods of data analysis is therefore highly welcome. The required qualifications include a PhD in chemistry or materials science. A solid, proven research background in inorganic chemistry, reaction engineering or heterogeneous catalysis is an advantage.

    We offer

    The postdoc position starts in June 2024 and has a duration of 4 years. The work location is the IRIS building near the synchrotron source BESSY II in Berlin Adlershof. Berlin is a large, cosmopolitan and tolerant city that offers you a wide variety of culture, art, music, and outdoor opportunities.

    Your application

    Please submit your application via our online application portal as soon as possible including the following documents:

    • Curriculum vitae
    • List of publications
    • Description of your research interests
    • Names and contact of three references

    We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those individuals selected for an interview will be contacted.

    For more information, please contact:
    Dr. Annette Trunschke (
    phone: +49 30 8413 4457 / 4458

    Max Planck Society

    The Max Planck Society endeavors 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.

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