Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Open positions

Scholarships financed by Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

In 2019 there will be 4 scholarships financed by Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore:

The deadline for application to the UCSC positions is expired on Sept 27th, 2019

Scholarships financed by KU Leuven

In 2019 there will be 1 scholarship financed by KU Leuven:

The deadline for application to the UCSC positions is expired on Sept 27th, 2019

Scholarships financed by University of Notre Dame

In 2019 there will be 2 scholarships financed by University of Notre Dame:

The deadline for application to the UCSC positions is expired on Sept 27th, 2019

Positions without financial support at Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

In 2019 there will be 1 positions without financial support:

The deadline for application to the UCSC positions is expired on Sept 27th, 2019

 

Establishing microscopic photophysics in hybrid perovskite solar cells

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Background and motivation

The world-increasing demand of clean energy is pushing towards the production of low-cost and efficient solar cells. To overcome silicon-based technology, new materials have emerged such as hybrid perovskites, a mixed organic-inorganic compound. Hybrid perovskites such as MAPbI3 (MA=CH3NH3+) and mixed halide perovskites such as MAPb(I1-xClx)3 and MAPb(I1-xBrx)3 represent intriguing materials since in just 5 years the power conversion efficiencies matched those of silicon. Despite this, there still exists a dearth of microscopic insight into solar cell performance beyond simple device-level metrics. Major issues are:1) to unveil the microscopic photophysics of the material, linking device performance to local electronic disorder originating from cation/anion phase segregation; 2) the long-term stability of hybrid perovskites, that are susceptible to dynamic transformations linked to ion migration, involving both cations and anions.

We are therefore developing spatially-resolved optical techniques that will enable us to study the microscopic photophysics of hybrid perovskite materials. The project we are seeking a student for centers on linking device performance to local electronic disorder originating from cation/anion phase segregation. This will involve direct optical measurements of perovskite thin film as well as solar cell absorption and emission. It will also entail use of a superresolution infrared absorption technique called photothermal heterodyne imaging to directly image for the first time cation migration under applied bias.

Profile

  • Master's degree or similar qualification in Physics, Materials Science, Chemistry or adjacent fields.
  • A solid background in physics, materials science or materials chemistry is required.
  • Experience in optics, microscopes and home-built instrumentation will be considered as an advantage. Programming skills, for example in Python, are also desired.
  • Good knowledge of the English language, both spoken and written, is essential.
  • Strong commitment, ability to work in a team, and eager for international mobility is desired.

Opportunities

  • Experimental research participating to the international collaboration between research groups USA and Italy. Double degree opportunity. The position is available immediately. Student stipend at the University of Notre Dame is currently $30,448 before tax. Health insurance is provided at no cost.

Supervisors

Prof. Masaru Kuno and Prof. Prashant Kamat,, University of Notre Dame (U.S.A)
Prof. Luca Gavioli, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (Italy)

Info

mkuno@nd.edu
luca.gavioli@unicatt.it

Investigating vectorial protein transport through nanopores

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Background and motivation

Understanding how proteins fold is the key to addressing neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Most of what we know today regarding this problem stems from experiments that use short model proteins that reproducibly fold to a global minimum. This is not representative of how real proteins behave since they are much larger and can begin folding anywhere along their length. Our research thus seeks to overturn conventional wisdom on protein folding by conducting optical studies of single proteins that fold during what is called vectorial transport. This is more representative of how actual proteins fold. The technique we are pursuing involves fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) measurements where individual proteins have been labeled with donor and acceptor molecules. The proteins are then passed through a nanopore followed by single molecule optical microscopy observations of subsequent folding. This work combines single molecule optical microscopy along with modern protein synthesis and functionalization.

Profile

  • Master's degree or similar qualification in Physics, Materials Science, Chemistry or adjacent fields.
  • A solid background in physics, materials science or materials chemistry is required.
  • The candidate will be expected to interface with biochemists and should be able to cross disciplinary boundaries. Hence a strong interest for multidisciplinary research is required.
  • Experience in optical microscopy and solution phase chemical synthesis will be considered as an advantage.
  • Good knowledge of the English language, both spoken and written, is essential.
  • Strong commitment, ability to work in a team, and eager for international mobility is desired.

Opportunities

  • Experimental research participating to the international collaboration between research groups USA and Italy. Double degree opportunity. The position is available immediately. Student stipend at the University of Notre Dame is currently $30,448 before tax. Health insurance is provided at no cost.

Supervisors

Prof. Masaru Kuno, University of Notre Dame (U.S.A)
Prof. Patricia Clarck, University of Notre Dame (U.S.A)
Prof. Luca Gavioli, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (Italy)

Info

mkuno@nd.edu
luca.gavioli@unicatt.it