Advanced Solid-state NMR characterization of inorganic materials, devices and catalytic processes

Project title:

Development of integrated strategies of characterization by solid-state NMR including structural determination and quantitative analysis of active sites of materials and in situ investigation of devices.

The Post-doctoral position is open for a one year period in Prof. Martens’ group and under the scientific supervision of Prof. Taulelle, Center for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis, KU Leuven, Belgium. The position is immediately available. Prolongation is possible.


Project description:

Structural determination of inorganic materials, implemented in devices or as catalysts and adsorbents, requires concerted strategies– to analyse their structures and evolution during chemical or physical processes or ageing. Among the wealth of possible NMR methods to measure the different nuclei and analyse their topological or functional organization _, specific combinations of experiments allow to monitor their evolution.

This project aims at developing and assessing such sets of experiments implemented either in sequential or parallel mode, taking into account all means of improving the sensitivity. This involves using acquisition schemes optimized for speed and sensitivity by exploiting fast acquisition schemes implemented on multiple channels to enable multiple transfers, multiple decoupling and parallel acquisition.


Host and research infrastructure:

KU Leuven is among the top European universities and a hub for interdisciplinary research at the interface of chemical engineering, material science and catalysis. The city of Leuven offers a historical, yet vibrant international and young environment with a tradition of hospitality and a rich socio-cultural life. Good knowledge of English is sufficient for all communications both within and outside the research group.

The recently upgraded NMR facilities of the Martens group at the Centre for Surface Chemistry and Catalysis, includes three solid-state Bruker NMR spectrometers: 300, 500 & 800 MHz housed jointly in a common site with the spectrometers of the chemistry department 300, 400 & 600 MHz.

The development of solid-state NMR is conducted within an NMR team under the scientific guidance of Prof. Taulelle, expert in NMR crystallography and in-situ NMR studies of crystallogenesis of inorganic materials.



We seek application from candidates with experience in the development of solid-state NMR methods and NMR characterization of inorganic materials and catalysts, mainly on zeolites, and their transformation during processes of materials and devices. A strong interest for technology and application of materials in an industrial context, an ability to develop collaborative work in a team, a demonstrated ability to innovate, are expected.


Prerequisites: Ph.D. in Materials Science, Physical-chemistry, Chemistry, Physics, Chemical Engineering or related area. Previous experience in solid-state NMR is essential; experience in performing NMR related DFT calculations is a plus. IT skills and knowledge of at least one relevant programming language (e.g., Fortran, C++, Python, Perl) or environment (Mathematica, Matlab), as well as basic experience with Linux shell operation are requested. Fluent English, good communication skills and excellent teamwork skills are required.

When assessing the applicant’s qualifications, aspects to be considered will include, complimentarity with the NMR team, scientific publications, thesis supervision, hardware related skills, activity within the scientific community. Some familiarity with inorganic materials, mainly zeolites, though optional would be a plus.



A motivation letter, CV, publication list, and contact information for 2 reviewers should be sent directly to Prof. Johan Martens and Prof. Taulelle. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

KU Leuven offers a competitive grants, including extensive social security. The KU Leuven is dedicated to making an effort to achieve a gender-equal company culture; measures are necessary to develop working conditions and a workplace culture in which female as well as male scientists feel they are welcome, have job satisfaction and experience the university as a caring and fair employer.


Please send any questions and your application to Johan Martens ( and Francis Taulelle ( with a short motivation letter and your CV, or respond to this announcement.