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Post-doc candidate: synthesis and evaluation of biobased polymers

You are a highly motivated researcher with a PhD degree in chemistry, holding skills in organic and polymer synthesis. You are willing to collaborate closely with both public and private partners on the synthesis of biobased polymers.

ongeveer een maand geleden


Urmonderbaan, Geleen, Limburg
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
30 - 38 uur
€ 3807 - € 5211 per maand


This post-doc will work on two projects.

The first project focusses on the development of a green synthesis route for the development of carboxylated cellulose. Carboxylated cellulose is an important product on the market, and one of the most well-known example is carboxymethylcellulose (CMC). However, CMC is prepared by modification of cellulose with the extremely hazardous compound monochloracetic acid. In this project, we want to make a carboxylated cellulose that is a functional equivalent for CMC using a greener process using renewable raw materials based on levulinic acid. Processes to achieve cellulose with a low and a high carboxylation degree will be designed.

The second project (ZCORE) targets the synthesis of fully biobased alkyd resins, the formulation of waterborne coating formulations thereof, and evaluation of the resulting coating properties. In the ZCORE project (from Seaweed to COating REsin applications), seaweed residues are converted into bio-aromatics and these will be tested in coatings. The ZCORE project is specifically working on 100% biobased alkyd resins (paint). So far, a content of 50-60% biobased has been achieved because no bio-aromatics were available on a sufficiently large scale. ZCORE changes this.

The candidate will collaborate with researchers at both public and private partners, and based on their feedback, the synthesis work will be tuned. The candidate will also be involved in upscaling the most successful synthetic routes.

The post-doc will be appointed at the Aachen-Maastricht Institute for Biobased Materials of Maastricht University, which is part of the Faculty of Science and Engineering. You will work in Sustainable Polymer Synthesis group of Associate Professor Katrien Bernaerts, which focusses on the synthesis and design of polymer materials with tunable properties and recyclability exploiting the functionality of biobased building blocks. You will operate from the Brightlands-Chemelot Campus in Geleen (Nl), where the labs are located.


The post-doc

  • holds a PhD degree in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or related fields;
    has skills in organic / polymer synthesis and characterization. Experience with polycondensation is a pro;
  • has a strong interest to investigate structure-property relationships of the synthesized copolymers in coating applications;
  • is open to scale up polymers for application tests by project partners;
  • aims at helping to create ready-to-market products from the insights gained during the post-doc study – in balance with profound scientific publishing in peer review journals;
  • likes to interact with academic and industrial partners;
    is result driven, inventive, creative, counts with potential impact, works ‘accountable’ and works with ownership;
  • masters scientific English for speaking, reading, and writing. Knowledge of Dutch is not required.


The full-time position is offered for one year. The salary will be set in post-doc salary scale of the Collective Labor Agreement of the Dutch Universities (between €3.807,00 and €5.211,00 gross per month depending on the level of experience). On top of this, there is an 8% holiday and an 8.3% year-end allowance. The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labor Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO), supplemented with local UM provisions. For more information look at the website www.maastrichtuniversity.nl > About UM > Working at UM

Additional information

For further information about this post-doc position you can contact Katrien Bernaerts, Associate Professor Sustainable Polymer Synthesis (katrien.bernaerts@maastrichtuniversity.nl or +31 43 388 2636).

You can send your application to this e-mail: RecruitmentFSE@maastrichtuniversity.nl