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Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher ETN Zulf

Based at
University of York - Heslington Campus
Hours of work
Contract status
Fixed term
30,800 - 34,250 (family allowance) Per year
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Role Description


Applications are invited to join the York Centre for Hyperpolarisation in Magnetic Resonance (CHyM: ) to work on a research project as part of the European Training Network (ETN) entitled Zero and ultra-low nuclear magnetic resonance (ZULF):

You will be expected to enroll on a PhD programme at the University of York and you will undertake a study that will seek to further develop the hyperpolarisation methods known as SABRE and PHIP in zero and ultra-low magnetic fields.

CHyM is a joint research centre created by the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Psychology. The Centre has received high levels of support from the Wellcome Trust, Wolfson Foundation, University of York, EPSRC and industrial collaborators totalling in excess of £13m and the research has resulted in many high-impact publications.

The Department of Chemistry is one of the largest and most successful academic departments at York. The Department was placed in the top ten UK universities for Research Power by the 2014 Research Excellence Framework exercise (REF).  As a Department we strive to provide a working environment which allows all staff and students to contribute fully, to flourish, and to excel. We are proud of our Athena SWAN Gold Award.  


NMR and MRI play unique roles in chemistry and clinical research where they impact directly on diagnosis. Inter-disciplinary training and cross-sectoral research activities,, will help bring together several rapidly developing, yet largely separated, areas of modern science to provide NMR with new capabilities. These approaches will benefit from the improved sensitivity provided by hyperpolarization where the detected response can be improved by up to several hundred thousand fold.

You will get experience in a broad range of activities which will include synthesis, catalysis, NMR and MRI detection, J-spectroscopy, sensor technologies and hyperpolarisation. You will be trained to prepare the catalysts used for polarisation transfer in SABRE and PHIP. These catalysts will then be used to increase the magnetic resonance response of an array of materials. You will seek to establish optimal conditions to lead to high levels of polarisation and then detected them through ZULF NMR. This will involve studies of normally inaccessible NMR coherences at low field. Opportunities will exist to use a synthetic strategy to prepare a series of deuterium labelled molecules to ehance understanding. There will be extensive opportunities to engage with the other groups of the consortium.

Your main duties will be:

  • To provide support to research project, undertaking research work within the overall programme and assisting with the day to day operation of the project
  • To undertake a programme of learning and development, in the form of a PhD , as an integral part of the role

Skills, Experience & Qualifications needed

You are expected to have an undergraduate degree in Chemistry or Physics along with a broad knowledge of Chemistry or Physics, knowledge of and an interest in NMR spectroscopy and an understanding of relevant health & safety practices.

In addition, You will have:

  • the ability to undertake academic research and exerperience of undertaking and writing up a research project
  • the ability to organise your own research activities to agreed deadlines and quality standard and to work as part of a team and also to work independently using own initiative
  • excellent IT skills  (including the use of Word and Excel) and excellent written communication in order to contribute effectively to the production of research reports and publications
  • high level oral communication skills to enable the effective presentation of research progress and outcomes to key stakeholders and to communicate new and complex information effectively to a range of audiences
  • a willingness to work proactively with colleagues in other work areas/institutions  
  • a commitment to personal development and updating of knowledge and skills      

To apply

PLEASE NOTE: An application must also be submitted via the ZULF website:, applicants to send their CV and cover letter to

Applicants must meet the Marie Curie eligibility criteria, which requires a suitable degree for entry into a PhD programme. Please visit the Marie Curie Web site for details: If successful you will be paid according to Marie Curie standards, providing a generous employment contract along with further support for research, training and career development. Fellowships for Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) are fundable for up to three-year periods and the tuition fees for the successful applicant will be covered.

For citizens from non-EU countries specific immigration formalities and rules are in place. Equal consideration will be given to female and male applicants. Please contact Simon Duckett or Meghan Halse for further information; or

Contract status: Fixed term (36 months)

Closing Date: 15 April 2018

Interview Date: To be confirmed

The Department of Chemistry values all employees for the qualities and skills they bring to the workplace and aims to be a diverse and egalitarian community in which all can thrive. 


Athena Swan Gold




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