Job offer from March 08, 2018

A PhD position in the Physics at Interfaces Group under the joined supervision by Prof. Dr. G. Floudas and Prof. Dr. H.-J. Butt, at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz is available effective June 1st, 2018.

Description of the PhD position: The way that polymers penetrate into nanometer size pores is of fundamental interest and important for many applications. Of particular interest is the case of a confining medium with sizes being comparable to the molecular length scale. Despite recent work in understanding capillary rise of polymers in nanopores, this field is a nearly unexplored research area. In addition to polymer imbibition, the dynamics of polymers within nanopores is connected with several technological important processes, such as adhesion, welding and melt processing, with applications in coatings, membranes and organic electronic devices. Yet there are conflicting reports on the effect of interfacial energy and local density on the segmental dynamics. The idea is to explore the kinetics of polymer imbibition in narrow pores and the dynamics of confined polymers by combining experiment (imbibition kinetics, dielectric spectroscopy), theory and simulation. Within this work we address the origin of defects in capillary imbibition. We explore the way that polymer mixtures, polymer blends and copolymers penetrate into thin pores by addressing, for the first time, the role of thermodynamics on imbibition. In another area we aim at predicting the local and global dynamics of polymers under 2-d confinement (by dielectric spectroscopy). Our objective is to go beyond the state of the art by obtaining a better understanding of polymer/substrate interfaces. By the completion of this work we expect to attain a better control of processes such as adhesion, welding and melt processing.

The successful candidate will gain significant knowledge in polymer and soft matter dynamics as well as surface characterization techniques. We are seeking a HIGHLY MOTIVATED PhD student with an EXCELLENT CV and with a background in polymer physics/physical chemistry/chemical physics/spectroscopy or closely related fields.

Salary for the appointment will be consistent with the Max Planck Society guidelines for PhD students. Working scientific language at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research is English. The Max Planck Society is an equal opportunity employer. Applications will be considered until the position is filled.

The application should be sent by e-mail to:, and should include:

1) A letter of interest (max. 1 page), clearly stating the specific interest of the candidate to join the group, work on this project, his/her career goals, etc.

2) CV

3) Grade transcripts or equivalent record of excellent academic performance clearly indicating courses taken and grades in each course

4) The names/e-mails of at least two references.

Go to Editor View
loading content