Doctoral Students in the Development of Organic Electrode Materials for Environmentally Friendly Rechargeable Batteries

Uppsala University



Uppsala University is a broad research university with a strong international standing. The task is to conduct research and education of the highest quality and to cooperate with society in various ways. Our most important asset is all the individuals who, with their curiosity and commitment, make Uppsala University one of the country's most exciting workplaces. Uppsala University has 44,000 students, 7,100 employees and a turnover of SEK 7 billion. 

The Department of Engineering Sciences is one of the largest institutions at Uppsala University and conducts research in a variety of technical subjects. The department has about 360 employees and has operations at Ångström Laboratory and Campus Gotland. The postgraduate service is at the Department of Nanotechnology and Functional Materials, Ångström Laboratory.

Research at the Department of Nanotechnology and Functional Materials focuses on five main areas, 1) Nanosecurity and biocompatibility, 2) Nanocellulose for biomedical applications, 3) Sustainable electrical energy storage, 4) Mesoporous materials and 5) Diagnostics with magnetic nanoparticles.

PhD Background : There is a huge need today to develop long-term sustainable energy storage systems for a range of applications that are necessary for us to maintain our modern lifestyle without jeopardizing the climate for future generations. These applications include vehicle propulsion, portable electronics and network applications as well as storage systems to master intermittent, renewable energy sources and ensure global security of the future's smart grids. Today's battery technology relies on inorganic materials that consume minerals that are available in limited quantities.

In addition, today's lithium-ion batteries, a technology that is crucial today for electrification of the transport sector, are associated with a high ecological footprint. Against this background, the question of today's LIB will be able to meet the need for energy storage in the long term, and is increasingly addressed in energy and environmental contexts. A major challenge for the next decades of material research in energy storage therefore lies in developing long-term sustainable energy storage systems. By creating electrode materials, based on organic materials from renewable raw materials that can be produced and also discarded in environmentally friendly processes, we hope to be able to create the sustainable storage systems needed to meet long-term environmental goals and a globally functioning welfare.

Tasks: At the Department of Nanotechnology and Functional Materials, we develop new materials for use in rechargeable batteries that are only made up of organic material to reduce the ecological footprint associated with today's batteries. The project is being carried out in close collaboration with the group for organic synthesis chemistry at the department of chemistry at BMC, which in the current collaboration is responsible for developing relevant compounds. The body of the electrode material consists of a conductive polymer, and our strategy for producing competitive electrode materials is to substitute the monomers of which the polymer is made up with high-capacity redox-active compounds. This service includes synthesis of compounds consisting of a polymerizable group with covalently bonded redox active compound and characterization thereof.

Furthermore, the project comprises polymerization and characterization of synthesized polymeric materials by electrochemical methods and to these coupled techniques such as e.g. spectroscopy of electroparamagnetic resonance and conductance measurements as well as the manufacture of batteries and examination of battery performance. The work includes actively participating in the development of new materials and new target structures for organic synthesis.

The main task of a doctoral student is to devote to his / her postgraduate education, which includes both participation in research projects and postgraduate courses. The duties may also include participation in teaching and other institutional work, but a maximum of 20% of working time.

Qualification Requirements : We are looking for you who have a Master's or Master's degree in Chemistry or equivalent and would like to specialize in experimental research on charge transport in polymeric materials for battery applications. Experience in organic synthesis from previous education is merit and also knowledge in reaction kinetics, electron transfer theory, polymer chemistry and spectroscopy (UV-vis, IR) is merit.

Good communication ability and interest in working in a multidisciplinary research environment towards common goals is of great importance, as is a deep interest in organic synthesis and a genuine interest in understanding the processes that take place in polymeric battery materials.

You should be goal oriented, structured and highly motivated and be able to work independently as well as in a group. Good collaboration is a requirement and previous experience of working in collaborative projects is desirable. You must have very good knowledge of English (orally and in writing).

Eligibility: Basic eligibility for postgraduate education has the one who has

  • graduated at the advanced level or
  • completed course requirements of at least 240 higher education credits, of which at least 60 higher education credits, with content relevant to postgraduate education or
  • acquired in other ways in or outside the country, essentially equivalent knowledge

The application should include:

  • Cover letter with a brief description of previous research, research interests and qualifications.
  • CV and publication list.
  • Copies of diplomas and other official academic documents.
  • Names and contact details of reference persons and their contact information.

Regulations for doctoral students can be found in the Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 5 §§ 1-7 and in the University's rules and guidelines .

Uppsala University values the qualities that equal gender distribution and diversity add to the business. We therefore like to see applicants of all genders and with different birth backgrounds, functionality and life experience.

Salary: According to local collective agreement for doctoral students.

Admission: Fall 2019 - Spring 2020. 

Type of Employment: Time-limited employment according to HF Chapter 5, Section 7.

Scope of Employment:  100%

Information about the employment is provided by: Prof. Martin Sjödin, 018-471 73 30, e-mail

Information on the Department of Nanotechnology and Functional Materials is available at

In your application, please refer to


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