Postdoc in Plant Biophysics and Microscale Fluid-Structure Interactions

Friday 24 Jan 20

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A unique opportunity is available in the research group of Associate Prof. Kaare H. Jensen at the Department of Physics, Technical University of Denmark. We are offering a post-doctoral research position taking part in the development of new biomimetic systems with a prime focus on elucidating the biophysics of cell-to-cell transport in plants.

Plant cells are physically separated by rigid walls yet remain coherent with their neighbors and able to exchange specific sets of molecules. Previous research has shown that the junctions which facilitate transport between cells exhibit remarkable flow control features, a process which is currently believed to be energized and tightly regulated.
However, passive physical flow control increasingly appears to be a fundamental mechanism for cell-cell transport. Consistent with this concept, transport has been shown to exhibit a strong mechanical stress dependence, a hallmark of fluid-structure interactions.

This Postdoc project will test the hypothesis that complex fluid flow control patterns can be encoded in material properties of soft micropores that link the cells. You will combine experiments on biomimetic microfluidic devices with low-Reynolds-number flow and elasticity theory to elucidate the behavior of cell networks linked by soft junctions.

The project will be hosted by the section for Biophysics and Fluids at DTU Physics and is part of a research project funded by the DFF Sapere Aude-programme.

Responsibilities and tasks
The successful candidate for this position will be in charge of designing and fabricating microfluidic systems and carrying out flow control experiments. 

  • You will be responsible for the design and fabrication of microfluidic systems to mimic cell-to-cell transport
  • You will be responsible for experiments to quantify fluid-structure interactions and flow control properties of artificial cell-to-cell channels
  • You will contribute to modeling of fluid-structure interactions
  • You will engage in supervision of bachelor and master-level students
  • You can motivate your colleagues to be their best and achieve ambitious goals
This work will take place within a team consisting of the group leader and 3 PhD students focused on fluid physics of life and fluid-structure interactions.

  • The candidate should have a PhD degree in physics, engineering or equivalent, and be an experimentalist with a solid theoretical knowledge of fluid and solid mechanics
  • Experience with microfluidic fabrication technology, e.g. soft lithography
  • Experience with 3D printing technology
  • Experience with characterization techniques for fluids, such as velocity or flow rate measurements
  • Experience with characterization techniques for solids, such as stress-strain measurements
  • Hands-on experience with design, construction, and adaptation of equipment and experimental setups
  • Scientific production and research potential at the international level
  • Independent problem-solving skills
  • Excellent English communication and language skills
  • Finally, the candidate should have outstanding technical writing skills
We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and terms of employment
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 1.5 years and should start 1 August 2020. 

You can read more about career paths at DTU here

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Group Leader Kaare H. Jensen, tel.: +45 2231 5241, e-mail:

You can read more about our research group and activities at

Application procedure
Please submit your online application no later than noon on 1 March 2020 (23:59 local time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include: 
  • Application (cover letter)
  • CV
  • List of publications
  • Diploma (MSc/PhD)
Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, disability, race, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU Physics
DTU Physics conducts cross-disciplinary research where micro- and nanotechnology is applied to a wide range of scientific disciplines (electronics, mechanics, chemistry, optics, fluidics, medical and biotechnology) as well as applications. 

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DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 11,500 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. Our main campus is in Kgs. Lyngby north of Copenhagen and we have campuses in Roskilde and Ballerup and in Sisimiut in Greenland.