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Leader in Integrated ICT Hardware & Systems

Ph.D. studentship: Development of chemical anti-counterfeiting tags for the protection of cultural heritage

DI-10 Ph.D. studentship: Development of chemical anti-counterfeiting tags for the protection of cultural heritage

Contract: Full Time/Fixed Term

Tyndall National Institute is a leading European research centre in integrated ICT hardware. We focus on solving societal challenges through deep-tech innovation in materials, devices, circuits and systems. We collaborate with industry and academic partners to transform research from atoms to systems into products in our core market areas of Communications, Agri-Tech, Energy, Environment and Health. We are a diverse, inclusive and family-friendly community of over 500 researchers, engineers, technicians, professional services and support staff, and postgraduate students.

Studentship Description

Within the Micro & Nano Systems (MNS) Centre at Tyndall, one of our core strengths is development and integration of materials, devices and systems for smart sensing. As part of the EU-funded HORIZON-CL2-2022-HERITAGE-01 Aurora (Artwork Unique RecognitiOn and tRacking through chemicAl encoded data, miniaturized devices and blockchain alliance), the Nanotechnology (NTG) group at Tyndall is offering a Ph.D. studentship on development of nanostructured material formulations and processes for the realisation of chemical tags displaying uniqueness, cost effective, non-destructive, and non-invasive characteristics for the identification of artifacts and their protection against illegal activities.

Key Responsibilities

As the successful candidate, you will:

  • Design, develop and characterise (nanostructured) material formulations, including flexible and/or transparent features, with fluorescent, spectral readout and/or unique morphological features suitable for tag development.
  • Develop solutions for self-assembly and deposition methodologies for non-invasive incorporation of tags into works of art.
  • Assess durability of tags and their anti-counterfeiting features
  • Collaborate with colleagues within the Nanotechnology Group, the Wireless Network group in Tyndall, and with AURORA partners to develop sustainable solutions for art anti-counterfeiting.

Essential Criteria

To make the most of this exciting opportunity, you will

  • Have a strong honour’s undergraduate degree in Materials Science, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering or have an equivalent and relevant professional qualification or equivalent research experience.
  • Have succeeded in self-motivated delivery of research projects at undergraduate or postgraduate level.
  • Be passionate about working in partnership with our team to share and co-develop expertise.

Desirable Criteria

  • Good laboratory and problem-solving skills.
  • High levels of initiative, project management, self-management, achievement-orientation, and motivation are encouraged.
  • Expertise in nanomaterial synthesis and characterisation (i.e. carbon dots, quantum dot, plasmonic materials etc.), self-assembly, spectroscopy, photoluminescence, printing and other deposition techniques.

What we offer: A fully-funded PhD position that includes a stipend of €18,500/year for up to three years or graduation (whatever comes first) and full coverage of academic fees/tuition (approx. €5,500/year). Full coverage of travel expenses to international conferences to present project outcomes. Fully-funded training opportunities.

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Dr. Daniela Iacopino (

Application Instructions

Step 1 - Click here to download and complete the Application form and indicate the Job Reference DI-10

Step 2 – Return the completed Application form, together with your CV and motivation letter to Please ensure that your motivation letter, CV and application letter are submitted in pdf format.

Postgraduate applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of English language proficiency as per UCC regulations ( Certificates should be valid (usually less than 2 years old) and should be uploaded with their application. In special circumstances the panel may consider a prior degree in English (e.g. Master thesis written in English) as evidence of English language proficiency.

Please note that Garda vetting and/or an international police clearance check may form part of the selection process.

The University, at its discretion, may undertake to make an additional appointment(s) from this competition following the conclusion of the process.

At this time, Tyndall National Institute does not require the assistance of recruitment agencies.

Tyndall National Institute at University College, Cork is an Equal Opportunities Employer.