The Department of Interface Science ( headed by Prof. Beatriz Roldán Cuenya at the Fritz Haber Institute carries out cutting-edge research on advanced functional materials with applications in heterogeneous catalysis, energy conversion and electrochemistry. By combining unique synthesis methods, state-of-the art tools for experimental characterization and advanced approaches to data analysis, atomistic details of thermal catalysis and electrochemical reactions at gas/solid and liquid/solid interfaces are revealed. In particular, structure-reactivity correlations on nanostructured materials can be established, paving the way for the rational design of novel catalytic materials.

We currently offer

1 PhD Position (m/w/d)

in the group Dynamics at Electrocatalytic Interface at the Department of Interface Science.

The successful candidate will participate in our endeavor to increase the fundamental understanding of physical and chemical processes at the solid liquid interface during electrochemical energy conversion. We focus our research in particular on the CO2 electroreduction, the oxygen evolution as well as the nitrate reduction reaction. The evolution of the catalysts’ properties will be studied on different time scales related to their electrocatalytic performance (activity, selectivity, stability). To reveal the active state properties, we apply a variety of laboratory- and synchrotron-based operando methods, e.g. X-ray diffraction and scattering, Raman and photoemission spectroscopy.

The PhD projects comprises the preparation and physico-chemical characterization of size- or shape selected nanoparticles prepared and/or thin film electrocatalysts prepared by physical or chemical methods, electrocatalytic and electrochemical experiments in rotating disk electrode setup and H-type cell setups coupled with (online) chromatography. To characterize the model electrocatalysts advanced laboratory-based methods such as X-ray diffraction, atomic force microscopy, electron microscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy will have to be applied. One focus of the project is the development and optimization of (operando) electrochemical setups as well as data analysis routines.

The PhD position is funded for three years.

We expect a PhD candidate to have:

• A master degree (or equivalent) in Chemistry, Physics, Physical Chemistry or Chemical Engineering.
• High drive to solve scientific and practical/instrumental challenges independently.
• The participation in synchrotron beamtimes and the following independent data analysis (upon thorough teaching) is expected.
• First publications in renowned peer-reviewed journals as well as hands-on experience in electrochemistry, UHV, X-ray or vibrational  
  spectroscopy would be profitable
• Experience with scripting and analysis using Python or equivalent languages is a plus
• Collaborative spirit, ability to work in an international research environment and very good English skills.

Your Application

Please submit your application via our online application portal as soon as possible but latest by July 31, 2022 including the following documents:

• Curriculum vitae
• List of publications
• Names and email addresses of at least three references

Max Planck Society
The Max Planck Society 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.

For more information please contact:

Dr Arno Bergmann (
Fritz-Haber-Institut der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Faradayweg 4-6, 14195 Berlin

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