PhD position on inkjet printing of soft sensors

University of Twente
October 15, 2023
Offerd Salary:€2.770
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
Working type:N/A
Ref info:N/A

The challenge

Soft functional materials are essential in the field of sensing, robotics, and diagnostics. They find applications in structural health monitoring of composites, aerodynamic parameters measurement in aircraft and wind turbines, and detecting biophysical signals within the human body. Inkjet technology stands out as a promising additive manufacturing method to construct functional micro/nanoparticles for these soft materials.

The aim of the PhD position is to advance inkjet printing for the creation of customizable soft functional materials with electrical property. This entails investigating and developing suitable inks containing conductive materials such as silver nanoparticles, copper nanoparticles, conductive polymers or hydrogel-based conductive materials. One key aspect of this project involves enhancing the stability of ejected liquid jets or droplet trains by applying particles at the interface. Innovative methods will be explored to effectively couple nanoparticles with microdroplets. Understanding the underlying dynamics of such coating systems will in turn bring new development of functional inks.

Initially, the focus will be on microcapsules and stimuli-responsive conductive soft materials. However, the opportunity to explore new avenues will be readily available. You will focus on fundamental and applied aspects of inkjet technology, for which The University of Twente offers a world-class setting for this endeavor, exemplified by our recent publications (see e.g. https: //; You will develop and test materials, while learning a transferable skill set in experimental fluid mechanics, microparticle development, and writing highly visible scientific publications.

Goal : Understanding and application of new inkjet printing methods for functional electrically conductive materials for sensing applications.

How : By combining your skills in materials science, chemistry, or (micro) fluid mechanics with our high-throughput In-Air microfluidics setup and knowledge of microparticle applications.

Why : There is a strong demand for microcapsules that are able to act as local sensors for the pressure or temperature, for example as flow tracers in the study of aerodynamics and sensors for medical applications.

Where : You will work in the Fluid Mechanics for Functional Materials group at Faculty of Engineering Technology at the University of Twente.

Your profile
  • You have obtained a MSc degree in Material Science, Chemical Engineering, Physical Chemistry, or Applied Physics.
  • You are motivated to develop new materials (by synthesis and/or combining commercial materials) and characterize these.
  • You have acquired some experience in microfluidics or inkjet printing, or would learn these skills at the University of Twente, a leading institution in this field.
  • You have written in-depth or high-profile scientific works and a strong ability to orally present results.
  • You love working in a team in which fundamental and applied research cross-fertilize.
  • You have excellent social and communication skills, in academic as well as non-academic contexts.
  • You have a creative and critical attitude, combined with perseverance and being flexible and stress-resistant.
  • Our offer
  • We offer you an exciting position in an inspiring multidisciplinary environment. The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in which internationalization is an important part of the strategic agenda.
  • We offer a four-year fulltime PhD position.
  • We provide a stimulating, modern research environment with world-class research facilities.
  • You will be part of a dedicated team with which you will collaborate extensively with industry.
  • A starting salary of €2.770,- gross per month in the first year and increasing to €3.539,- gross per month in the fourth year.
  • An annual holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, and an annual year-end bonus of 8.3%.
  • A solid pension scheme.
  • Minimum of 29 leave days in case of full-time employment.
  • We provide excellent mentorship and a stimulating research environment to accelerate your further professional and personal growth.
  • The University of Twente is situated on a green and lively campus with lots of facilities for sports and other activities.
  • Information and application

    For additional information regarding this position, you can contact dr. J. Jiang: [email protected] or dr. C.W. Visser: [email protected]. Please apply for this position by clicking on the "apply now" button. The deadline for this vacancy is October 15, 2023.

    Your application should consist of:

  • a cover letter (maximum 1 page A4), emphasizing your specific interest, qualifications and motivations to apply for this position;
  • a full Curriculum Vitae, including a list of all courses attended, grades obtained, and publications (if applicable);
  • a short description (maximum 1 page A4VCW(E1 ) of your MSc research;
  • contact details of at least two references who worked closely with you.
  • About the organisation

    The Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET) engages in education and research of Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Industrial Design Engineering. We enable society and industry to innovate and create value using efficient, solid and sustainable technology. We are part of a ‘people-first' university of technology, taking our place as an internationally leading center for smart production, processes and devices in five domains: Health Technology, Maintenance, Smart Regions, Smart Industry and Sustainable Resources. Our faculty is home to about 2,900 Bachelor's and Master's students, 550 employees and 150 PhD candidates. Our educational and research programmes are closely connected with UT research institutes Mesa+ Institute, TechMed Center and Digital Society Institute.

    Want to know more Jiang, J. (Jieke)

    Assistant Professor

    Jiang, J. (Jieke)

    Assistant Professor

    Do you have questions about this vacancy? Then you can contact Jieke for all substantive questions about this position and the application procedure. For general questions about working for the UT, please refer to the chatbot.



    Email:[email protected]

    How to apply Step 1

    Apply. When you see a vacancy that appeals to you, you can apply online. We ask you to upload a CV and motivation letter and/or list of publications. You will receive a confirmation of receipt by e-mail.

    Step 2

    Selection. The selection committee will review your application and you will receive a response within 2 weeks after the vacancy has been closed.

    Step 3

    1st interview. The 1st (online or in person) meeting serves as an introduction where we introduce ourselves to you and you to us. You may be asked to give a short presentation. This will be further explained in the invitation.

    Step 4

    2nd interview. In the second interview, we will further discuss the job content, your skills and your talents.

    Step 5

    The offer. If the conversations are positive, you will be made a suitable offer.

    Your Colleagues
  • Visser, C.W. (Claas Willem)
  • Personal page

  • Venner, C.H. (Kees)
  • Personal page

  • Our mission Human Touch
  • At the UT it's all about people, in line with our university's High Tech Human Touch philosophy. In everything we do, the well-being and future of our students and staff are paramount. From research and teaching to personnel management, campus management and the use of new technologies.

  • Our mission We are a university of technology
  • Our university is a public institution that serves society. We are accountable to society for the ways in which we use our academic freedom. We are responsible for ensuring that the power of science and technology is harnessed to achieve the best possible impact in a changing world. We cherish our rich tradition of combining technical and social sciences in our five profiling themes: Improving healthcare by personalized technologies; Creating intelligent manufacturing systems; Shaping our world with smart materials; Engineering our digital society; and Engineering for a resilient world.

  • Our mission We help to strengthen society
  • We help society meet the challenges of today and tomorrow. But we are also transparent about what science and technology can and cannot do in finding sustainable solutions. And help translate these solutions into everyday life.

  • Our mission We are sustainable
  • We want our communities to flourish and show resilience, so we seize opportunities for innovation. We are knowledgeable and have an eye for what society needs. Our students and staff receive all the guidance they need in their quest for ecological, social and economic sustainability. “The University of Twente is all about people. Our sustainable technologies help to strengthen society.”

    Browse all jobs

    From this employer

    Recent blogs

    Recent news