PhD Position in Quantum Physics and Precision Spectroscopy

PhD Position in Quantum Physics and Precision Spectroscopy

Published Deadline Location
15 Nov 1 Feb Amsterdam

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Job description

Are you a highly-motivated student for performing state-of-the-art atomic physics experiments and developing quantum technology? Then we are looking for you.

The hybrid atom-ion quantum systems lab, headed by Dr. Rene Gerritsma, is part of the Quantum Gases and Quantum Information (QGQI) cluster at the University of Amsterdam. The main focus of the group is to study the quantum dynamics in trapped ions while at the same time developing technology for emerging quantum applications, such as quantum computing and simulation.

More information on our research can be found on the webpage (

What are you going to do?

You will work in a team that develops a new platform for precision spectroscopy based on quantum logic. In close collaboration with the LaserLab at the Free University in Amsterdam (VU), you will develop new ion traps that can be used for precision spectroscopy of simple atomic and molecular ions. By comparing the results to state-of-the-art calculations, we can probe for physics beyond the standard model. We will develop new quantum enhanced methods to improve the sensitivity of our measurements beyond state-of-the-art. The project will consist of several interrelated sub-projects aimed at:
  1. Develop new ion traps to be used for quantum logic spectroscopy
  2. Perform quantum logic spectroscopy in new ways in particular for studying quantum many body physics and quantum chemistry in atom-ion mixtures
  3. Using optical tweezers to control the coupling between general spectroscopy and detection ions
You will work in a large team consisting of other PhD students, post docs and several master students based both at UvA and VU. Theory support will be supplied by the group of Dr. Arghavan Safavi-Naini of the Quantum Software research center ( The work will involve setting up optics, lasers and electronics as well as programming and possibly microfabrication.

Relevant references:
  • P. O. Schmidt et al., Science 309, 749-752 (2005).
  • O. Katz et al., Nature Physics 18, 533-537 (2022).
  • H. Hirzler et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 128, 103401 (2022).
  • S. Patra et al., Science 369, 1238-1241 (2021).


University of Amsterdam (UvA)


Your experience and profile

A MSc. in (theoretical or experimental) physics or physical chemistry and you are requested to motivate why you apply for the position and to supply a CV.

Other skills/experiences/documents that would benefit your application are:
  • Previous laboratory experience in an atomic physics lab.
  • Excellent communication skills (English).
  • Scientific publications.
To foster diversity in our research group, we will especially appreciate applications from female candidates.

Conditions of employment

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week for the duration of 4 years (the initial contract will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of 4 years). The preferred starting date is August 2023. This should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings. We also expect you to assist in teaching undergraduates and master students.

The gross monthly salary, based on 38 hours per week and dependent on relevant experience, ranges between € 2,443 to € 3,122 (scale P). This does not include 8% holiday allowance and 8,3% year-end allowance. The Collective Labour Agreement of Universities of the Netherlands is applicable.

Besides the salary and a vibrant and challenging environment at Science Park we offer you multiple fringe benefits:
  • 232 holiday hours per year (based on fulltime) and extra holidays between Christmas and 1 January;
  • multiple courses to follow from our Teaching and Learning Centre;
  • a complete educational program for PhD students;
  • multiple courses on topics such as leadership for academic staff;
  • multiple courses on topics such as time management, handling stress and an online learning platform with 100+ different courses;
  • 7 weeks birth leave (partner leave) with 100% salary;
  • partly paid parental leave;
  • the possibility to set up a workplace at home;
  • a pension at ABP for which UvA pays two third part of the contribution;
  • the possibility to follow courses to learn Dutch;
  • help with housing for a studio or small apartment when you're moving from abroad.
Are you curious to read more about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits, take a look here.


Faculty of Science

The University of Amsterdam is the Netherlands' largest university, offering the widest range of academic programmes. At the UvA, 30,000 students, 6,000 staff members and 3,000 PhD candidates study and work in a diverse range of fields, connected by a culture of curiosity.

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 8,000, as well as 1,800 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The Institute of Physics (IoP) of the Faculty of Science combines the Van der Waals-Zeeman Institute (WZI), the Institute of Theoretical Physics (ITFA) and the Institute for High Energy Physics (IHEF) and is one of the large research institutes of the Faculty of Science at the University of Amsterdam. The mission of IoP is to carry out excellent research in the field of experimental and theoretical physics, to provide inspiring teaching within the physics and other curricula and to transfer our knowledge of and enthusiasm for physics to society. The IoP has over 50 faculty and 180 researchers in total. The combination with the NWO Institutes at Amsterdam Science Park constitutes the largest physics hub in the Netherlands and is an international centre of excellence.

Want to know more about our organisation? Read more about working at the University of Amsterdam.

Any questions?

Do you have any questions or do you require additional information? Please contact:
  • Rene Gerritsma:


  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • max. €2443 per month
  • University graduate
  • 10856


University of Amsterdam (UvA)

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Science Park 904, 1098XH, Amsterdam

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