University of Cambridge

Job Opportunities


Research Associate (Fixed Term)

Applications are invited for a postdoctoral research position in the University of Cambridge funded by a grant from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. The project involves determining the role of elastic strain and microstructure dynamics in controlling the structural evolution, magnetic, dielectric, electrical and electronic properties of ferroic and multiferroic materials. The successful candidate will be based in the Dept. of Earth Sciences and will work in a group of 3 newly appointed PDRAs in Cambridge but the project involves collaboration with a number of different Materials Physics groups at other institutions.

The role will involve developing computer simulations of large complex systems (>1 million particles) to support experimental work. The specific sub-projects are:

  1. investigate the role of domain walls to reduce thermal conductivity;

  2. explain emanating polarity in tweed patterns and complex ferroelastic systems;

  3. calibrate how electric fields can change ferroelastic patterns via the flexoelectric effect;

  4. simulate RUS, RPS and AE signals during structural phase transitions.

The person appointed will have a research background in solid state physics with an interest in phase transitions and microstructures. Familiarity with computational methods for the analysis of microstructures and/or aspects of structural phase transitions is required and some prior knowledge of phase transitions and/or of magnetic/ferroelastic/multiferroic materials would be an advantage.

The successful candidate must have PhD in a relevant field (e.g. mineralogy, mineral physics, materials physics, solid state physics), a track record of publication in peer-reviewed international journals and will have good communication skills in order to present results at international meetings.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 2 years in the first instance, with the possibility of additional funding for a further year.

To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply' button below. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Informal enquiries can be made to Ekhard Salje (

Please quote reference LB11993 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

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Apply online