The Helmholtz Centre Potsdam – GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences is inviting applications for 2 PhD Fellows in Soil Environmental (Bio)Geochemistry (m/f/x). The position is available in the Interface Geochemistry section, led by Prof. Liane G. Benning.

About the position:
  • The successful candidates (m/f/x) will become an integral part of the Interface Geochemistry section, work closely with other students and postdocs in the group and be registered in the PhD programme of the Freie Universität Berlin.
  • perform wet lab synthesis experiments to investigate the nucleation and growth of iron phosphate or magnesium phosphate phases under simulated subsurface conditions in the presence and absence of simple organic compounds or of metals (e.g., [Me] = Co, Cu, etc)
  • carry out novel, in situ and time-resolved lab experiments and phase characterizations to investigate the kinetics and pathways of these formation and transformation reactions
  • determine the changes in structure, composition and size of iron phosphate or magnesium phosphate phases during their formation and subsequent transformation
  • evaluate how organic compounds or metal ion adsorption or incorporation affects the stability of the formed phosphate phases
  • publish in international peer-reviewed journals and present research results at scientific meetings


  • Applicant must hold Master’s degree (or equivalent) in Mineralogy, Environmental Sciences, Materials or Inorganic Chemistry (or related fields)
  • Strong mineralogical or crystal chemistry background and documented experience in the use of some analytical techniques (e.g., XRD, SEM/TEM, IR, UV-Vis, ICP-OES, IC) is an advantage
  • Experience in inorganic chemical or mineral synthesis is an asset
  • Applicant must possess proficiency in spoken and written English

Start date: 1st October 2020


Apply online and include the following:

  • A full CV
  • A Cover letter stating which project the candidate is applying for and detailing point by point how he/she fit the described qualifications
  • University certificates (BSc and if already available MSc)
  • The names, emails and full addresses of two referees.
—————–Quick Overview————-
Organization Helmholtz Centre Potsdam
Country Germany
Fellowship Level Doctoral
Subject areas Mineralogy, Environmental Sciences, Materials/ Inorganic Chemistry
Fellowship amount Varies
Eligibility Open to all nationalities
Deadline 22nd June 2020

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