PhD Researcher in CO2 Capture

Wageningen University


PhD Researcher in CO2 Capture

Location Wageningen

End date Tue 2 March 2021

We are looking for

Are you interested in understanding and improving solid materials for CO2 capture, do you want to work at the interface of fundamental and applied research? Are you holding an MSc degree in either (physical) chemistry or chemical engineering? I that case we, the biobased chemistry and technology group of Wageningen University, have a PhD vacancy which is interesting for you.

To develop new materials for capturing CO2, in this case from air, a better understanding of how capture materials work is needed. To arrive at the new materials a fundamental understanding of the relation between their properties and performance is sought for in this project. You have to combine obtained results from material synthesis, characterization and kinetic modeling to achieve the desired understanding. The project is funded by the Dutch science foundation NWO in which Shell global solutions B.V. is the collaborating private partner.

In this  project, your role will be to design new solid CO2 sorbent materials (like supported carbonates), by an iterative process in which you relate their performance to their characteristics. You will have to prepare the materials in the laboratory, characterize them by several (spectroscopic) techniques and establish their performance for CO2 capture under realistic conditions. Modeling of the kinetics of adsorption/desorption is an essential part of the work. 

As a PhD candidate, your project entails the following elements:

  • Preparation of materials by different techniques like impregnation and precipitation;
  • characterization by different techniques like IR, TEM, XRD, Physisorption, Chemisorption;
  • establishing the performance of the materials in flow reactors;
  • establishing kinetic parameters of adsorption and desorption and modeling of these data.

We ask

We are looking for a highly-motivated, academically curious and result-driven team player with: 

  • A drive for performing scientific research;
  • independent working skills;
  • excellent communication skills in both spoken and written English (either proven Higher education certificate or TOEFL certificate:
Specific expertise profile:
  • A background in chemistry or chemical engineering;
  • affinity/experience with experimental work, i.e. preparation, characterization and performance;
  • affinity/experience with kinetic modeling.

We offer

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our  Collective Labour Agreement include:

  • Sabbatical leave, study leave, and paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will receive a fully funded PhD position and you will be offered a course program tailored to your needs and the research team.

The gross salary for the first year is € 2.395,-. per month rising to € 3.061,-. in the fourth year in according to the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale P). This is based on a full-time working week of 38 hours. We offer a temporary contract for 18 months which will be extended for the duration of the project if you perform well. 

Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.
You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the Best University in the Netherlands for the 16th consecutive time.

Coming from abroad

Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees. Applicants from abroad moving to the Netherlands may qualify for a special tax relief, known as the 30% ruling. Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family. 

Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research's International Community pagecontains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, schooling, and other issues.

More information

Do you want more information?
For more information about this position, please contact Prof.dr. Harry Bitter, by e-mail:
For more information about the procedure, please contact Ina Luttmann, HR advisor, by mail: 

Do you want to apply?

You can apply directly using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval. 
This vacancy will be listed up to and including Wednesday March 3rd 2021. 
CV and motivation letter and a curriculum of the masters’ courses will be requested.

Equal opportunities 

Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR. For more information please go to our inclusive webpage. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.

We are

The Biobased Chemistry and Technology group focusses on the production of chemicals and materials from renewable/circular resources. Experimental/wet chemical approaches go hand in hand with computational methods on different length scales.

General information about the Biobased Chemistry and Technology group can be found on 

The Agrotechnology & Food Sciences Group is part of Wageningen University & Research, an organisation that brings together fundamental and applied scientific research. We work on creating ‘healthy food in a biobased society’ with private sector companies, research institutes and government agencies in the Netherlands and abroad. Our innovations play a crucial role in solving the major issues which affect society today. Entrepreneurship and professionalism are key in all that we do. In short, we are a major international employer offering considerable potential for your career.

The mission of Wageningen University and Research is “To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life”. Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment.

With its roughly 30 branches, 6.500 employees and 12.500 students, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. An integrated approach to problems and the cooperation between various disciplines are at the heart of Wageningen’s unique approach. WUR has been named Best Employer in the Education category for 2019-2020.

These are the points our employees list as good reasons to come work at WUR: read the 5 reasons to come work at WUR.

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.

Apply now

In your application, please refer to


amsterdam uni

antwerp uni

cambridge uni

florida uni

hamburg uni

harvard uni

hiroshima uni

oslo uni

purdue uni

ryerson uni

shanghai jiao tong uni

stockholm uni