Postdoctoral Fellow in the area of Sustainable Carbon-Based Supercapacitors

Trondheim, Norway
07 Jan 2022
End of advertisement period
16 Feb 2022
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

About the position 

We have a vacancy for a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Department of Energy and Process Engineering (EPT).

The successful candidate for this position must be able to conduct independent, yet highly collaborative research and development in the area of sustainable carbon-based supercapacitors. The candidate will be asked to optimize the synthesis and formation of activated carbon from biomass under industrial processing constraints. The carbon material will then be used to fabricate supercapacitor devices and measure a variety of electrochemical performance and reliability metrics. The candidate is expected to be capable of performing complementary material characterization (electron microscopy, x-ray analysis, etc.), to adequately evaluate the relationships between the carbon synthesis/processing conditions and device performance.

The project will require the Postdoctor to frequently visit an industrial collaborator in the Stavanger area and to spend approximately six months with a collaborator in Germany, to use special biomass processing equipment.

You will report to Steven Boles, Professor of Sustainable Energy Systems in EPT.

Duties of the position

  • The candidate will be required to conduct systematic experiments to transform biomass into activated carbon using a proprietary synthesis process.
  • The candidate will be required to conduct chemical and materials characterization of activated carbon.
  • The candidate will be required to fabricate high-power electrochemical devices and to correlate the performance to prior processing conditions.
  • The candidate will be required to report findings in peer reviewed journals and through public dissemination opportunities, such as workshops and conferences.
  • The candidate will be required to travel domestically and internationally (EU).

Required selection criteria

  • You must have completed a Norwegian doctoral degree or corresponding foreign doctoral degree recognized as equivalent to a Norwegian PhD 
  • You must have a professionally relevant background in chemical/process engineering, but other suitable such as chemistry or materials science can be considered
  • Strong experimental background in biomass-derived carbon scaling with a preference towards those with material handling and characterization. Candidates with experience with electrochemical experience will also be considered.
  • Good written and oral English language skills.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant  

Preferred selection criteria

  • At least two out of the following three will be prioritized:
    • Experience with biomass-derived carbon synthesis
    • Experience with pyrolysis and rotary or continuous screw kilns
    • Experience with electrochemical energy storage devices (batteries, capacitors, etc.)

Personal characteristics

  • Strongly motivated and ambitious
  • You are structured, targeted and solution oriented
  • Motivated to work interdisciplinary
  • The succesful candidate should be creative and actively contribute in the team he/she will be part of
  • Have good dissemination skills
  • Contributing to a sustainable social environment will also be valued.

We offer 

Salary and conditions

As a Postdoctoral Fellow (code 1352) you are normally paid from gross NOK 553 500 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund. 

The period of employment is 2 years.  

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work. 

The position is subject to external funding. 

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution on a daily basis. 

About the application 

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English.

Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above.  

If, for any reason, you have taken a career break or have had an atypical career and wish to disclose this in your application, the selection committee will take this into account, recognizing that the quantity of your research may be reduced as a result. 

The application must include: 

  • CV, certificates and diplomas 
  • transcripts and diplomas for bachelor's-, master's- and PhD degrees.  
  • Academic works - published or unpublished - that you would like to be considered in the assessment
  • Research plan 
  • Name and address of three referees 

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education. Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well. 
Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation. 

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA. 

General information 

Working at NTNU 

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background.  

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.  

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted. 

Information Act (Offentleglova), your name, age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested not to have your name entered on the list of applicants. 

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Professor Steven Boles, telephone +47 73559832, email If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact HR-consultant Renate Fjellheim, e-mail:
Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Diploma Supplement is required to attach for European Master Diplomas outside Norway. Chinese applicants are required to provide confirmation of Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI).  

If you are invited for interview you must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. Please refer to the application number IV-297/21 when applying.  

Application deadline: 16.02.2022

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Energy and Process Engineering

We conduct research and teaching covering the entire energy chain, from resources to the end-user. We look at how energy is produced and used by humans and machines in a sustainable way with regard to health, climate change and the resource base. The Department of Energy and Process Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

Deadline 16th February 2022
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Fixed Term
Place of service Gløshaugen