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Researcher – Simulation of thin film materials processing.

MN-14 Researcher – Simulation of thin film materials processing.

Contract Type: Full-time /Fixed Term

Tyndall National Institute at University College Cork invites applications for an 18 month postdoctoral researcher position to begin as soon as possible. The project is funded by an industry client and involves first principles simulations of processing of thin film materials, encompassing deposition and etch (ALD, ALE). The successful candidate will join the Materials Modelling for Devices Group lead by Michael Nolan (, becoming part of a team of PhD and postdoctoral researchers in the field of atomic level processing and having access to our extensive network of collaborators in thin film processing.

As miniaturisation of electronic devices continues and the IRDS roadmap encourages the discovery of new materials for various layers in nanoelectronic devices, a key component of ensuring continued innovation is the processing of these new materials. Atomic level processing encompasses atomic layer deposition (ALD), atomic layer etching (ALE) and molecular layer deposition (MLD) and first principles simulations using density functional theory (DFT) are a key part of the development of atomic level processing, allowing screening of precursors, testing of potential chemistries and understanding deposition and etch.

We have industry supported activities in these areas and this position involves working on these industry defined problems, helping in the development of novel processes. An ability to work to deadlines, deliver high quality results and communicate these to specialists and non-specialists is crucial for this position.

Key Duties and Responsibilities

The project aims to new atomic level processing chemistries for deposition and etch. Devising and running large DFT level simulations of the processing chemistry, analysis of results and dissemination of these findings and their implications to the industry partner. Direct liaison with the industry partner will be expected. Depending on the background of the successful candidate, developing machine learning models for processing is also of interest.

Other duties and responsibilities are: 

  • Participate in Education and Public Engagement activities, as required.
  • Ensure all activities are compliant with the Tyndall Quality Management system and required Health & Safety standards.
  • Carry out any additional duties as may reasonably be required within the general scope and level of the post.

Essential Criteria

  • Applicants must have a PhD or have submitted their PhD thesis at the time of application for this position.
  • The successful candidate for the position will have their degrees in chemistry, physics or materials science
  • Clear, demonstrable background in quantum chemistry, computational chemistry and computational physics.
  • Background in surface and interface calculations is desirable
  • Background in programming and machine learning/AI is helpful
  • Track record of publications, dissemination & communication of results
  • Highly self-motivated, be able to demonstrate initiative and have a desire to learn.
  • The candidate must possess excellent scientific writing and communication skills through English.

Desirable Criteria

  • Exposure to machine learning and Python programming
  • Prior experience in using high performance computing infrastructure

Informal enquiries concerning this position can be made to: Dr. Michael Nolan (email

Appointment may be made on the IUA Scale for Post-Doctoral Researchers €39,130-€46,442pa.  Salary placement on appointment will be in accordance with public sector pay policy.

Application Instructions

Step 1 - Please click here to download the Application form and indicate the Job Reference MN-14

Step 2 - return the completed application form, together with your cv and motivation letter to

Handwritten forms will not be accepted.

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.