45,000 students and 8,000 employees in teaching, research and administration, all working together to shape perspectives for the future – that is the University of Münster (WWU). Embedded in the vibrant atmosphere of Münster with its high standard of living, the University’s diverse research profile and attractive study programmes draw students and researchers throughout Germany and from around the world.

The Institute for Mineralogy in the Faculty of Geosciences at the University of Münster (WWU), Germany, in cooperation with DESY, Hamburg, is seeking to fill the position of a

Doctoral Research Associate
Wissenschaftliche/r Mitarbeiter/in
(salary level TV-L E 13)

commencing on 1 March 2022. We are offering a fixed-term part-time position (75%) for 3 years.

Your tasks:

  • This position is tied to working towards a doctorate.
  • This fully funded PhD project will investigate the stability, structure and compression behaviour of planetary ices in mini-Neptune exoplanets using X-ray diffraction probes in diamond anvil cells at the European XFEL and PETRA III (DESY).
  • The PhD student will be based at DESY (Hamburg) and will work in close collaboration with the research team lead by Dr Hanns-Peter Liermann at the Extreme Conditions Beamline (ECB, P02.2).
  • This position is co-funded by WWU Münster and DESY through the ‘Centre for Molecular Water Science’ (CMWS), an interdisciplinary initiative that brings together key experts from different areas related to water-related sciences to gain a detailed molecular understanding of H2O. The centre includes more than 40 institutions from 15 different countries.

Our expectations:

  •  Applicants should hold a master’s degree or equivalent in Earth sciences, physics, chemistry or a related field at the time of the appointment.
  •  The candidate should have a strong background in mineral physics, physico-chemistry/material sciences and planetology.
  •  Experience in high pressure and/or X-ray diffraction techniques and Raman spectroscopy is preferred.
  •  Excellent English skills (written and spoken), computational skills and availability for travel are required. German language skills would be advantageous, but are not a requirement.
  •  We are seeking a highly motivated individual with a keen interest in experimental work and the ability to work independently.

The University of Münster is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to increasing the proportion of women academics. Consequently, we actively encourage applications by women. Female candidates with equivalent qualifications and academic achievements will be preferentially considered within the framework of the legal possibilities.

The University of Münster is committed to employing more staff with disabilities. Candidates with recognized severe disabilities who have equivalent qualifications are given preference in hiring decisions.

If you have any questions, please contact Prof Carmen Sanchez-Valle ( General information about the Institute for Mineralogy at the University of Münster, the ECB at DESY and the Centre for Molecular Water Science is available at:

Are you interested? Then we look forward to receiving your application by 15 December 2021.

Please send your application, via email, to Prof Carmen Sanchez-Valle at Candidates should submit, in a single PDF file, a short statement of their research experience and interests, a CV including a list of publications, and the names and contact information of three potential referees.

Please note that we cannot consider other file formats.