Doctoral student, Nuclear magneto-optic spectroscopy

The University of Oulu in Northern Finland, with approximately 15000 students and 3000 employees, is an international, multidisciplinary research university with a rich pool of creative and intellectual talent. The strengths of the University are broad, multidisciplinary research interests, a modern research and study environment, and wide cooperation with international research and educational institutes (

The open doctoral student position is related to the field of molecular spectroscopy, in the following specific topic: Nuclear Magneto-optic spectroscopy (NMOS).

The position is located at the NMR Research Unit (, in the Faculty of Science. We are an internationally established, combined experimental and theoretical team of about 20 people, of which 50% with a PhD degree. We develop experimental, theoretical and computational research methods based on magnetic resonance and related phenomena and apply those methods to topical problems in molecular and materials sciences. Our particular strength is in the tight connection between state-of-the-art measurements and calculations. We have an open and encouraging working atmosphere and have a substantial track record in successful funding applications both at the Academy of Finland and in EU programmers. We are key users of the NMR laboratory facility of the University of Oulu, furnished with five spectrometers (300-600 MHz) suited for an unusually broad variety of studies (including, e.g., imaging, diffusion, hyperpolarization), as well as nuclear magneto-optic instrumentation. CPU-intensive computational research is carried out mainly using the facilities of the national supercomputer center (2300 TFlop/s total capacity). Local Linux clusters belonging to the Finnish Grid and Cloud Infrastructure are used for high-throughput production calculations.

Subject Field And Description Of The Position

The position is a part of the Kvantum institute ( project Frontiers of Materials NMR, which receives strategic funding from the University of Oulu.

The research direction of the position is briefly described in the following: In the newly discovered field of nuclear magneto-optic spectroscopy, we aim at combining nuclear site-specific information similar to but also adding to that of NMR, by optical detection of the changes in the polarization state of light travelling through a nuclear spin-polarized sample. The NMOS project at the University of Oulu combines building of novel instrumentation, running experiments on the samples of interest as well as using quantum chemistry to predict the observed parameters and gain insight into the molecular properties. The applicant is asked to clearly indicate if they are more inclined to take part in the (1) construction of the instrumentation and working with the experiments or (2) in the theoretical computation of the relevant molecular parameters.

The length of the position is four years, from February 1, 2020 (or as soon as possible thereafter).

Required Qualifications And Assessment

The successful applicant must have completed MSc (or equivalent) in physics, chemistry, materials science, or a related field, with very good/excellent grades. Fluent English, as well as good communication and teamwork skills and willingness to learn new things are required.  Depending on the part of the project the applicant is interested in, the following requirements apply. The applicant chooses one of these two directions based on her/his preference

(1) Requirements for the experimentally oriented work:

Experience in experimental molecular spectroscopy (especially NMR, magneto-optic or optical measurements), optics, electronics, construction of instrumentation as well as computer experience in data analysis (excel, origin, matlab, …) is to be documented. Skills in using LabView, 3D modelling and 3D printing and prototyping or experience in mechanical engineeringare considered as assets

(2) Requirements for the computationally oriented work:

Experience in computational molecular science methods as well as training in molecular quantum mechanics is to be documented. Active knowledge of modern programming languages (Python, Perl, C++, etc…) is considered as an asset.

A six-month trial period will be effective in the beginning of the four-year contract.

It is required that the students are eligible for and acquire PhD study rights in physics in the Technology and Natural Sciences Doctoral Programme ( of the University of Oulu Graduate School (, within the trial period. The detailed requirements for the admission can be found here:

When assessing the applicants’ qualifications, issues to be considered will include the grades obtained during BSc and MSc studies, suitability of the earlier studies for embarking on a PhD degree programme in physics, prizes received during undergraduate studies, scientific publications and presentations, activity in the scientific community, practical familiarity with the field in question and international activities.

The doctoral student will carry out research work within the NMR Research Unit under the guidance and supervision of one or more of the senior researchers, publish research results in leading international scientific journals, attend doctoral courses and complete her/his doctoral thesis within 4 years. Other duties include teaching undergraduate courses (5% of the total of 1,624 working hours per year) and supervising undergraduate theses. In addition, she/he may be obligated to participate in administrative tasks of the Research Unit and University.

Salary and work benefits

The salary will be based on the levels 2-4 of the demand level chart for university–level teaching and research staff of Finnish universities. In addition, a salary component based on personal work performance will be paid (maximum of 50 % of the job-specific component). The salary is thus in practice roughly 2300–2900 € per month (before taxes), depending on the appointee’s personal work performance and progress in her/his PhD studies. The employment includes occupational health care and benefits of Nordic welfare state, such as access to high-quality public affordable childcare services.

Application Procedure

In your written application please provide clearly the following information and appendices:

  • Brief curriculum vitae in English (including list of publications)
  • Scanned copies of undergraduate degree certificates (BSc and MSc)
  • Extract of the study record(s)
  • Brief description of research interests, experience and motivation, in English
  • Your availability (starting time)
  • Contact information of two persons whom may be asked to give a statement of the candidate

Send your application using the electronic form by December 31, 2019 23:59 (Finnish local time). The applications will not be returned.


The potential candidates for the positions may be called for interview.

For Further Information Regarding The Filling Of This Post

Dr. Anu Kantola, NMR Research Unit, University of Oulu, tel. +358-294 48 1303, email: anu.kantola(at)

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