Lund University, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Design Sciences

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.

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 and is 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 lead 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. 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

The project is hosted at the division of Ergonomics & Aerosol Technology, Institute of Design Sciences at the Faculty of Engineering. The research focus of the aerosol group is on emissions and health effects of aerosols. The research conducted is typically multi-disciplinary and performed in close collaboration with researchers in various subject disciplines and with access to internationally leading laboratories. The division actively works on creating an environment where openness, teamwork, and support of/from the collegium is highly valued.

The division also coordinates AEROSOLS, one of the newly inaugurated LTH profile areas at the Faculty of Engineering. Over 100 researchers from PhD-students to professors carry out multidisciplinary research on air quality and the impacts on health and climate with the aim to provide solutions to our major societal challenges, where the here announced position relates to focus area 3: “Sustainable Materials and Safety Across the Life-cycle”. (

Jenny Rissler, Associate Professor, is the main supervisor of the project. Her research is focused on health and environmental impact of aerosols, but also on material properties and secondary used of residual waste streams. The latter has specifically focused on the use of XAS (X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy) for determining the speciation of trace metals in complex matrixes. 

Work duties

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in research projects and third cycle courses. The work duties will also include teaching and other departmental duties (no more than 20%).

As a PhD student in the project “Closing the Loop: Chemical Speciation using XAS a Key for Safe Secondary Use of Materials” your work will be focused on investigating chemical forms of trace metals in inorganic residual streams and of the metals emitted to air (aerosols) during handling and using the materials – and the fate of toxic compounds after emission. The work will be primarily experimental, but as the work includes advanced analytical tools and data analysis, good theoretical skills are needed.

You will work in close collaboration both with other researchers at the institute and at other institutes, combining complementary expertise in aerosol characterization, materials science, and spectroscopy. The main method to be used is X-ray absorption spectroscopy, XAS (including both XANES and EXAFS), combined with 2D-mapping by XRF, all available at the Balder beamline at MAX IV. Complementary characterization techniques may include X-ray Photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) or Raman spectroscopy.

Your PhD studies you will generate knowledge about the properties of inorganic waste streams, and how they can be safely processed and used. It will also increase the understanding of emissions related to using the materials, and the fate of toxic compounds in biological systems. The activities are also part of the strategic research areas NanoLund and the LINXS ( theme on “Environment and Climate”.

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. This project is conducted in close collaboration with industry, and an additional secondment can take place at the industrial partners. 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.

Admission requirements 

A person meets the general admission requirements for third-cycle courses and study programmes if the applicant: 

  • has been awarded a second-cycle qualification, or
  • has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second cycle, or
  • has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

A person meets the specific admission requirements for third cycle studies in Aerosol Technology if the applicant has: 

  • at least 50 credits in subjects of relevance to the field, including at least 25 second cycle credits, or
  • a one- or two-year Master’s degree or an MSc in Engineering of relevance to the field

Additional requirements:

  • Very good oral and written proficiency in English.
  • 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 2020-10-30 to 2023-10-31 for work or studies as main occupation.
  • You are eligible for the PRISMAS programme if you qualify for a doctoral candidacy, i.e., are not already in possession of a doctoral degree.

Assessment criteria

Selection for third-cycle studies is based on the student’s potential to profit from such studies. The assessment of potential is made primarily on the basis of academic results from the first and second cycle. Special attention is paid to the following: 

  1. Knowledge and skills relevant to the thesis project and the subject of study.
  2. An assessment of ability to work independently and to formulate and tackle research problems.
  3. Written and oral communication skills.
  4. Other experience relevant to the third-cycle studies, e.g. professional experience.

Other assessment criteria:

  • Experience in experimental work and ability for skillful laboratory work will be considered a merit,
  • Theoretical knowledge or demonstrated experience of spectroscopy, preferentially X-ray spectroscopy, for example XRF, XPS or XAS
  • Suitable background is an MSc with a broad competence profile from relevant areas of aerosol science, material science, sustainability, physics or chemistry
  • Experience in scientific interaction with researchers from other relevant disciplines.  

Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive and independence, and how the applicant, through experience and skills, is deemed to have the abilities necessary for successfully completing the third cycle programme.

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 Work at Lund University.

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

Terms of employment

Only those admitted to third cycle studies may be appointed to a doctoral studentship. Third cycle studies at LTH consist of full-time studies for 4 years. A doctoral studentship is a fixed-term employment of a maximum of 5 years (including 20% departmental duties). Doctoral studentships are regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), chapter 5, 1-7 §§. 

How to apply

Applications shall be written in English and include:

  • 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.)

All 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.

In regard to incomplete applications (especially if lacking the abovementioned documents), the PRISMAS Management reserves the right to exclude them in the selection process, without any additional notification to the applicant. 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 (

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

Welcome to apply!

Type of employment Temporary position
First day of employment 1st of March 2024
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2023/2782
  • Jenny Rissler, +46462220534,
Union representative
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet,
  • SEKO: Seko Civil, 046-2229366
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-2229362
Published 08.Sep.2023
Last application date 31.Oct.2023 11:59 PM CET

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