PhD Position in Geomicrobiology

University of Tübingen Center for Applied Geosciences


PhD position in Geomicrobiology (m/f/d)

Faculty of Science, Center for Applied Geosciences

Application deadline : 15.11.2020

‘Microbial cycling of iron (bio)minerals – implications for the fate of nutrients and trace metals’

We are seeking a

PhD student (geochemist or environmental microbiologist) (m/f/d)

to investigate microbial iron cycling (Fe(II) oxidation and Fe(III) reduction) and its consequences for the mobility of the trace metal nickel (Ni2+) and the nutrient phosphate (PO43-). Specifically, this project looks at the minerals formed during repeated alternations of microbial Fe(II) oxidation and Fe(III) reduction using XRD and Mössbauer spectroscopy. We will use a variety of techniques including ICP-MS, cryo-FIB-SEM (coupled to EDX) and synchrotron-based XAS techniques to find out how microbial activity influences the trace metal and nutrient content of the secondary minerals. In summary, we will combine laboratory cultivation experiments with microscopic, geochemical and mineralogical analyses to follow microbial activity and mineral transformation during early diagenesis. 

The candidate will be given many opportunities to be creative and innovative, to apply state-of-the art geochemical analyses, microbial physiological studies, microscopic and spectroscopic techniques, and to work on a challenging, highly relevant topic within a large network of (inter)national collaborators.


  • Strong background and/or interest in Geomicrobiology and Geochemistry
  • Ability to work independently and in a team
  • Excellent management and communication skills
  • Highly motivated for interdisciplinary research
  • Good computer and language (English) skills

Start date for successful applicants is early 2021. Employment (TVL E13, 65%, 3 years) will be arranged by the University of Tübingen. The university seeks to raise the number of women in research and teaching and therefore urges qualified women to apply. Disabled persons will be preferred in case of equal qualification.

For more information and to apply, please send a CV, motivation letter and overview of techniques and methods previously used by email before November 15th, 2020 to: Prof. Dr. Andreas Kappler (andreas.kapplerspam, Geomicrobiology, Center for Applied Geosciences, University of Tübingen, Germany.

In your application, please refer to


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