Lund University, Faculty of Science, division of Radiation Physics

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top universities. The University has around 47 000 students and more than 8 800 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset.

The Department of Medical Radiation Physics has research divisions covering all aspects of medical physics, such as radiation therapy, mathematics and physics of medical imaging, nuclear medicine and magnetic resonance. Environmental radiology, biological effects of radiation and radiation protection for ionizing and non-ionizing radiation are other important fields of scientific interest. Department website: .

PRISMAS - PhD Research and Innovation in Synchrotron Methods and Applications in Sweden – is a new doctoral network training the next generation of 40 leading synchrotron experts, co-funded by the Horizon Europe MSCA COFUND Programme.

As a PRISMAS PhD student, you will have the chance to conduct cutting-edge research in your field, taking advantage of state of the art tools that will bring to attractive future job opportunities in academia or industry. Moreover, you are part of designing the future of synchrotron technology and instrumentation and using these to tackle some of the most significant global challenges the world faces today while acquiring interdisciplinary and intersectoral knowledge. Being part of the PRISMAS programme gives you the one-of-a-kind experience in form of a secondment at the world´s first 4th generation synchrotron, MAX IV in Lund, Sweden. Complemented with a tailored training programme, including courses to build scientific and technical competence as well as strengthen transferrable skills, PRISMAS provides you with the skills, knowledge and competence needed to successfully achieve your doctoral degree.

Description of the workplace
As a PhD student on this project, you will be based at the Department for Medical Radiation Physics at Lund University in the “Experimental X-ray” group led by Associate Prof Martin Bech. The main focus of the Experimental X-ray group is to develop methods and applications for x-ray microscopy and micro-tomography of biological tissue. In the group we have two laboratories for x-ray micro- and nano-tomography on site, and we frequently travel to synchrotron radiation facilities abroad for imaging experiments.

  • During the coming time, the group will consist of three PhD students, two post docs and one researcher, all working towards the applications of x-ray microscopy in medical research questions.
  • The supervisors of the project are: Martin Bech (PI, Medical Radiation Physics, Lund), Prof. Isabel Goncalves (Cardiology, Skåne University Hospital, Malmö) and Prof. Anders B Dahl (DTU imaging centre, Lyngby).
  • During the PhD studies, secondments are planned both at MAX IV (DanMax beamline supervised by Dr. Innokenty Kantor) and at DTU (supervised by Anders B Dahl).

(1) Truong M, Dreier T, Wassélius J, Sundius L, Persson A, Lovric G, Bonnin A, Goncalves I, Bech M. Sub-micrometer morphology of human atherosclerotic plaque revealed by synchrotron radiation-based μCT—A comparison with histology. Plos one. 2022 Apr 26;17(4):e0265598.

(2) Andersson M, Kjer HM, Rafael-Patino J, Pacureanu A, Pakkenberg B, Thiran JP, Ptito M, Bech M, Bjorholm Dahl A, Andersen Dahl V, Dyrby TB. Axon morphology is modulated by the local environment and impacts the noninvasive investigation of its structure–function relationship. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2020 Dec 29;117(52):33649-59.

What we offer
Lund University is a public authority which means that employees get particular benefits, generous annual leave and an advantageous occupational pension scheme. Read more on the University website about being a Lund University employee: Benefits for employees | Lund University

The MSCA COFUND project PRISMAS offers you outstanding opportunities as well as a stimulating and inspiring surrounding for performing cutting-edge research. Supporting your mobility, it creates perfect conditions for strengthening your international network.

Work duties and responsibilities
As a PhD student in this team, you will play an active role in the development of new and better x-ray micro-tomography of soft tissue. With a special focus on synchrotron radiation, your work will be pushing the limits of energy-resolved micro-CT, tissue discrimination based on chemical composition, and chromatic variations and attenuation.  

Short project description:
The clinical standard for characterisation of explanted plaques is histology, where the tissue sample is sliced to thin sections, stained and imaged in a microscope. Unfortunately, in this process, important information about three-dimensional morphology is lost in this process. Recent studies with synchrotron radiation have allowed us to image 3D structures such as e.g. the vasa vasorum of a carotid plaque (see reference 1).

Our goal is to establish an imaging routine for carotid plaques from the bio-bank, using both a custom-built micro-CT in our own lab, and synchrotron radiation at MAX IV. The beam at the DanMAX beamline fits very well to the regions of interest in the carotid plaque, and the planned secondment will take place at the imaging branch (synchrotron based micro-CT) at DanMAX. Subsequent, the samples will be imaged with conventional histological methods, for gold standard comparison.

The main part of your work will be located at Lund University. The secondments at MAX IV (in Lund) and at DTU (commuting distance from Lund) can be conducted without relocation from Lund. Travels to synchrotrons abroad for experiment campaigns are foreseen to be approximately twice per year. Your work will include conceptualisation and designing experiments, conducting micro-CT experiments and volumetric data analysis and visualisation. The successful candidate would have the possibility to help with supervising Master students.

The training implies a secondment of 3-12 months at MAX IV laboratory in Lund, Sweden. Additional secondments and/or short stays may be arranged in agreement with the supervisor of the research project. Moreover, you will attend international conferences, participate in periodical project meetings and training schools as well as in specialised courses at different universities to complement your knowledge.  A certain amount of travelling is foreseen in relation to these activities.

To qualify for this PhD position, good knowledge in programming (e.g. C, python or MATLAB) is a requirement. The applicant must be fluent in speaking and writing scientific English.

Other qualifications that will be considered are:

  • Experience of work in x-ray imaging or other imaging modalities, evidenced for example by a master thesis in the topic.
  • Emphasis will also be put on good communication and cooperation skills.

Basis of Assessment
Selection to postgraduate studies is based on the expected ability to perform well in the studies. The evaluation of the ability to perform well is based primarily on the results of studies at the basic and advanced levels, in particular:

  • Knowledge and skills relevant to postgraduate studies within the research area, such as a broad and thorough preparation in physics. This can be documented by appended documents.
  • Estimated ability to work independently and the ability to formulate and solve scientific questions. This ability can be established, for example, based on undergraduate research experiences, a Master's thesis or in a discussion of scientific problems during a possible interview.
  • Skills in written and oral communication.
  • Other experience relevant to postgraduate studies, such as professional experience
  • The applicant should be interested in working in an international environment since a lot of the activities will be in collaboration with international partners.

Eligibility criteria
To comply with the mobility rule of the MSCA COFUND programme, you are eligible if you have not resided in Sweden for more than 12 months during the period 2020-05-01 to 2023-05-02 for work or studies as main occupation.

By the employment date (before 01/09/2023) you must have completed courses of at least 240 credits, of which at least 60 credits are from second-cycle courses, have been awarded a Master´s degree or have acquired largely equivalent knowledge in some other way, in Sweden or abroad.

In addition to the criteria abovementioned, you must have fulfilled a second cycle education in a relevant field, such as physics, technical engineering or similar.

You are eligible for the PRISMAS programme, if you are a doctoral candidate, i.e., are not already in possession of a doctoral degree.

Job assignments
The position is a fixed term position for four years at 100 per cent of full time and foreseen to start on 01/09/2023.

The holders of these positions have a primary obligation to successfully fulfil their postgraduate (third cycle) education ending with a doctoral degree (PhD). A position as doctoral student can contain some limited teaching or other departmental work at the Department of Medical Radiation Physics. The maximum amount of such work is 20%.

How to apply
Applications are to be submitted via the online Lund University VARBI portal and must include the following documents:

  • CV in Europass format
  • A two-page cover letter, justifying your interest in the position and how it matches your qualifications as well as the prioritization in case of applying to several PRISMAS positions.
  • at least one reference letter
  • an evidence of English 3 proficiency (minimum B2 level)
  • Copy of academic records (including marks for all coursework) with a transcript of diploma in English,
  • and any other document to which you would like to draw attention (details of referees, letters of recommendation, etc.)

These documents should be uploaded (pdf) in the job application portal. Exam certificates and other documents on paper should be scanned or photographed before being uploaded.

The application will be evaluated based on scientific excellence, the adequacy of your career plan and your thesis project as well as your research experience.

Details on the novel, unique and common selection process for all the PRISMAS positions can be found here: How to apply – MAX IV (

For more detailed information on the position or the research project, please contact: Associate Professor Martin Bech,

If you have questions on the selection process, please contact:

For questions on the employment conditions and the university, please contact:
Helena Skönvall, HR  


Type of employment Temporary position
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2023/554
  • Martin Bech, universitetslektor,
  • Helena Skönvall, personalsamordnare,
Union representative
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-2229362
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet,
  • SEKO: Seko Civil, 046-2229366
Published 02.Mar.2023
Last application date 02.May.2023 11:59 PM CEST

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