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ICMAB Open Positions

Doctoral Candidate position in Synthesis-structure-performance correlations in Prussian Blue Analogues as positive electrode active materials for Na-ion batteries in the RIDERS mainframe

Deadline: Jun 30, 2024

The Institute of Materials Science of Barcelona (ICMAB-CSIC) is a multidisciplinary research center focused on cutting-edge research in functional advanced materials in the fields of ENERGY, ELECTRONICS, NANOMEDICINE and application fields yet to imagine.

19 April 2024

About the position

The PhD student will prepare different Prussian Blue Analogues (PBAs) Na2Fe2-xMnx(CN)6 yH2O with 0 ≤ x ≤ 2 using different synthesis conditions to produce materials with different microstructures and also likely varying amounts of defects and degrees of hydration. These will be characterized using a range of different analysis, diffraction and spectroscopy techniques to fully elucidate their composition, crystal structure and microstructure prior to electrochemical testing in sodium cells using different protocols in order to draw correlations and optimize performance. The redox mechanism will also be studied via operando synchrotron based techniques. The best performing compositions will be tested in full cells using different separators/electrolytes, with upscaling to pouch cell size for the best concepts.

Expected Results: The PhD studentwill obtain a series PBAs with different compositions (including degree of hydration) and microstructures, and their investigation should enable to draw synthesis-structure-performance correlations, including the effect of crystal structure distortions, degree of hydration or amount of vacancies in the electrochemical properties (e.g. capacity, rate capability, cycle life) in Na-ion cells. Post-mortem studies on cells dismantled after operation should enable to detect ageing mechanisms, and to correlate the processes observed with the cell components and operation conditions. These should be especially useful to rationalize state-of-the-art knowledge in PBA related to electrochemical applications and assess their application prospects in less conventional cell architectures (e.g. polymer electrolytes). 

Requirements of the candidates

  • Applicants must hold a Master’s degree or equivalent in Chemistry or any related areas providing access to PhD programs and should have experience with experimental research.
  • Applicants must have a very good knowledge (written & spoken) of the English language.
  • Strong motivation and ability to collaborate in an interdisciplinary and international team.

Application Procedure

The RIDERS recruitment process will be open, transparent, impartial and equitable in accordance with the provisions of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers, and will ensure that no conflict of interest exists or arises from the recruitment. The selection of the applicants will be made on the basis of their scientific skills and the relevance of their research experience, the impact of the proposed training on their researcher's career and a fair gender representation.

The complete application package is available on the Recruitment page of the RIDERS website (

Contact & Further Information

For additional information about this research project & DC position, please contact the scientist-in-charge / supervisor: Dr. Rosa Palacín (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) 

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