Postdoctoral position in computational modelling of irradiation processes in biological matter


Applications are invited for a 34-month postdoctoral position based at Queen's University Belfast, to work in the field of Computational modelling of irradiation processes in biological matter. The position is available from 1st July 2018.

The postdoc is part of the “ESC2RAD: Enabling Smart Computations to study space RADiation effects”  project funded by the European Commission through a Research and  Innovation Action. The partnership involves Dr Fabiana da Pieve and Dr  Edith Botek, at BIRA – Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomie  (Belgium), Prof. Emilio Artacho, at Nanogune and DIPC in San Sebastián  (Spain), and Prof. Jorge Kohanoff at Queen's University Belfast (UK).  The project aims at developing a next-generation space radiation  predictive tool based on the combination of Space environment tools and  first-principles approaches from the materials science/chemical physics  community. The role of the postdoc based in Belfast will be to calculate  electronic stopping power in DNA models using TDDFT for a variety of  ions present in cosmic radiation, and to study damage (bond breaking)  due to reactive species generated by irradiation using mostly  first-principles molecular dynamics simulations. The ultimate goal is to  define damage descriptors that can be incorporated into the Space  environment tools. This will be done in collaboration with the Belgian  colleagues, using Monte Carlo track simulation tools like Geant4.

Applicants should have a PhD in Physics, Chemistry or another  relevant discipline. A good background in electronic structure and  computer simulations is essential. Experience in time-dependent DFT and  first-principles molecular dynamics is highly desirable. Knowledge of  Monte Carlo track simulation methods is also desirable. The candidate  will be based at Queen University Belfast, and will collaborate closely  with the researchers at BIRA (Brussels), also interacting at a  methodological level with the researchers at Nanogune (San Sebastián).  This collaboration will involve travel to Belgium and Spain.

Applicants should complete an online application form here, where full criteria are specified.

Informal enquiries may be directed to Prof. Jorge Kohanoff (

Anticipated interview date: Monday 11th June 2018

Salary scale: £32,548 - £36,613 per annum (including contribution points)

Closing date: Tuesday 22nd May 2018