PhD Position in Materials Science or Solid State Physics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

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PhD Position in a BILAT project between Norway and Japan at NTNU “Vacancies in aluminum alloys in a context of trace elements and recycling”

We primary seek candidates with a Master in Materials Science or Solid State Physics, motivated for experimental activities in the fields of aluminum alloys according to a BILAT project between Norway and Japan. The purpose of the bilateral project, called `Norwegian-Japanese Al-Mg-Si Alloy Precipitation Project`, is as follows: `The primary objective is to identify impact of selected trace elements on precipitation and study vacancies in relation to trace elements in Al-Mg-Si alloys. This will be done in a bilateral Norwegian/Japanese research collaboration between Norway (Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) / SINTEF / Hydro Aluminum) and Japan (University of Toyama /Tokyo institute of Technology). Building up competence to understand these fundamental issues will be of general importance for the light metals community and can assist Hydro in increasing the quality and reduce the energy consumption in their future Aluminum products`.

The PhD project is called `Vacancies in aluminum alloys in a context of trace elements and recycling`. Here experiments and calculations will be used to focus on vacancies, how they bind with solute, their effects on diffusion, nucleation of precipitates, in special relation to the trace elements in 6xxx alloys. In this study we aim at detecting vacancies (indirectly or directly) preferably via solute-vacancy pairs. To study some features of the vacancies various advanced microscopy analytical techniques like scanning TEM (STEM), electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) may be used. The more recent techniques Positron Annihilation Spectroscopy (PAS) / Positron Annihilation Lifetime Spectroscopy (PALS) are probably most significant, because they are specially suited for the study of vacancies or pores in materials. Here one aim is to find the factors that make it possible to control the strength increase taking place at room temperature just after cooling from extrusion (prior to final ageing). This is believed to be driven solely by vacancies. Studying vacancies is a challenging task. However, with the use of several independent methods, the combination of the two projects, the previous experience in precipitation and precipitate structure for these alloys, and at last, the long industrial research with these materials, it is expected that new insights will be achieved.

Experience in transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and other advanced characterization methods is useful. Depending on chosen topics and project needs, and the candidates` background and qualifications, the position will be allocated either to the Materials Science or the Physics department in NTNU.

We offer:

  • State-of-the- art experimental equipment
  • Active and highly motivated research groups
  • Close contact with Norwegian aluminum industry
  • Possibility up to 24 months stay outside Norway (for example in Japan), minimum 1 year in Norway according to project

PhD fellowships at NTNU are normally awarded for a total of 3 years with the possibility of until 1 year extension with 25% teaching duties in agreement with the department.

Further information about the position can be obtained from
Professor Randi Holmestad,
Department of Physics, NTNU,
phone 73593880,
e-mail: randi.holmestad[at]

Professor Knut Marthinsen,
Department of Materials Science and Engineering,
phone 73593473,
e-mail: knut.marthinsen[at]

More information about NTNU, Hydro and SINTEF can be found at these links:

The national labour force must reflect the composition of the population to the greatest possible extent. It is therefore a major political objective to achieve a balance of age and gender and to recruit persons with an immigrant background.

The start salary for the PhD fellow is set at level 45 in the national salary scheme, gross NOK 355.400 per year, of which 2 % is deducted for the State Pension scheme. The appointment will be made in accordance with current regulations with relevant parts of `Supplementary guidelines for employment as research fellow at NTNU`. Applicants must agree to participate in organized doctoral study programs within the period of the appointment and have to be qualified for the PhD-study. A contract will be drawn up regarding the period of appointment and work-related duties.

Publications and any other work which the applicant wishes to be taken into account should also be enclosed. Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to specify the input of the applicant in a joint work, a short summary should be attached outlining the applicant`s input. Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration.

Applications with CV, certified copies of testimonies and documents and other relevant documents should be submitted electronically through Preferably we want the attachments in one file.

The position’s reference number is NT-12/10
Application deadline is 2010-04-12

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure the above information is current and correct. However, applicants should contact the appropriate administering body before making an application, as details do change frequently.


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