PostDoc Forensics-on-a-Chip: Body Fluids Identification & Analysis at the Crime Scene

PostDoc Forensics-on-a-Chip: Body Fluids Identification & Analysis at the Crime Scene

Published Deadline Location
4 Apr 15 May Delft

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Help the police solve crimes better! Join us as a PostDoc and develop a microfluidic platform for fast analysis of body fluids on crime-scenes.

Job description

Identification and analysis of body fluids at crime scenes are multi-step procedures that require presumptive and/or confirmatory tests. These tests can be destructive, rendering follow-up tests impossible, or give false positive results. Immunoassays and mass spectrometry-based methods are currently used in forensic laboratories, but require sophisticated labeling/sample preparation.

In this project, you will be developing a portable microfluidic platform for on-scene identification and analysis of multiple analytes in body fluid traces (e.g., blood). This device (Microgel-based Etalon Spectrophotometry in Microfluidic Appliance (MESMA)) consists of a sensing element (stimuli-responsive microgels) and a separation element (membranes). The membrane provides sample pre-treatment (concentration), and the microgels are for sensing and detection of the analytes. The target analytes selected for proof-of-principle in this project are “sex hormones”, and “stimulants (amphetamines, cocaine)”. This will enable forensic investigators/police to immediately identify the gender of the victim/suspect and whether they were drugged ruling out potential engaged individuals at the early stage. Contrary to current alternatives, this platform will not need mixing samples with test fluids and will keep samples intact for multi-testing. With this project you will not only significantly advance body fluids analysis science, but you will contribute to a safer society, and will increase the affordability and effectiveness of our judicial system.

You will work under the supervision of dr. Hanieh Bazyar and dr. ir. Arjo Loeve in a joint project between the departments of Process and Energy (P&E) and BioMechanical Engineering (BME) at the faculty of Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering (3mE). This position will be embedded in the Engineering Thermodynamic section of the P&E department (ETh/3mE). This research will be enabled and supported by the facilities of both departments: state-of-the-art membrane and microfluidic research facilities of the P&E department and the well-equipped laboratories at the BME.


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)



  • A PhD in a relevant field, i.e. Biomedical engineering, Chemical engineering, Chemistry, Materials engineering, or a related discipline.
  • Knowledge in a filed that strongly relates to the project, e.g., forensics, biology, microfluidics, membrane based separation technologies, etc.
  • Demonstrated ability in written and spoken English.
  • Ability to work independently and in a team.

Having the following is a plus:

  • Knowledge of microfluidic chip design, fabrication and experiments
  • Clean room working experience.
  • Knowledge of stimuli-responsive polymers.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 18 months.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount 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. An International Children's Centre offers childcare and there is an international primary school.


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 as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!


Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering

From chip to ship. From machine to human being. From idea to solution. Driven by a deep-rooted desire to understand our environment and discover its underlying mechanisms, research and education at the 3mE faculty focusses on fundamental understanding, design, production including application and product improvement, materials, processes and (mechanical) systems.

3mE is a dynamic and innovative faculty with high-tech lab facilities and international reach. It’s a large faculty but also versatile, so we can often make unique connections by combining different disciplines. This is reflected in 3mE’s outstanding, state-of-the-art education, which trains students to become responsible and socially engaged engineers and scientists. We translate our knowledge and insights into solutions to societal issues, contributing to a sustainable society and to the development of prosperity and well-being. That is what unites us in pioneering research, inspiring education and (inter)national cooperation.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering. Do you want to experience working at our faculty? These videos will introduce you to some of our researchers and their work.


  • Postdoc
  • Engineering
  • 36—40 hours per week
  • €2960—€4670 per month
  • University graduate
  • TUD03737


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

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Mekelweg 2, 2628 CD, Delft

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