PhD : New light-responsive engineered living materials based on microalgae

PhD : New light-responsive engineered living materials based on microalgae

Published Deadline Location
11 Jan 2 Mar Delft

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Job description

The Aubin-Tam group is a dynamic and multidisciplinary research group interested in developing new bio-inspired and living materials.

Project description:

Nature fabricates materials with remarkable properties, having the ability to grow, move and sense their environment. Such dynamic and interactive materials are in strong contrast with man-made synthetic materials. Recent scientific interest has emerged to incorporate living cells into materials to form engineered living materials, using most often muscle cells or bacteria. While underexplored, microalgae-based living materials are highly promising due to the light-driven movement of microalgae.

The aim of this project is to fabricate the first light-responsive microalgae-based materials that use the light-driven motion of cells for dynamic and reversible control over the 3D organisation and shape of the living material.

The PhD student will devise fabrication approaches for porous hydrogels, which can host motile microalgae cells. He/she will also study how the material properties are locally affected by the presence and response of living cells.     


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


Qualified candidates have a Master in either engineering, material science, physics, chemistry, or a related field. Successful candidates are motivated by a deep scientific curiosity, have excellent experimental and quantitative skills and possess a drive to learn and to develop new methods and concepts.


To apply for this position, please send a CV, a letter of interest and names of references to   


PLEASE NOTE: The applications will be reviewed as soon as they are received, therefore it is preferable to submit your application as soon as it is ready. 

Conditions of employment

TU Delft offers PhD-candidates a 4-year contract, with an official go/no go progress assessment after one year. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2434 per month in the first year to € 3111 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation.


Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context. At TU Delft we embrace diversity and aim to be as inclusive as possible (see our Code of Conduct). Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale.

Challenge. Change. Impact! 


Faculty Applied Sciences

With more than 1,000 employees, including 135 pioneering principal investigators, as well as a population of about 3,400 passionate students, the Faculty of Applied Sciences is an inspiring scientific ecosystem. Focusing on key enabling technologies, such as quantum- and nanotechnology, photonics, biotechnology, synthetic biology and materials for energy storage and conversion, our faculty aims to provide solutions to important problems of the 21st century. To that end, we train students in broad Bachelor's and specialist Master's programmes with a strong research component. Our scientists conduct ground-breaking fundamental and applied research in the fields of Life and Health Science & Technology, Nanoscience, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Science & Technology, and Engineering Physics. We are also training the next generation of high school teachers and science communicators.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Applied Sciences.


  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • €2443—€3122 per month
  • University graduate
  • TUD01920


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

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Mekelweg 2, 2628 CD, Delft

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