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Cryo-electron Tomography Specialist / Assistant Professor (0.8 - 1.0 FTE)

Utrecht University's Faculty of Science is looking for a Cryo-electron Tomography Specialist / Assistant Professor (0.8-1.0 FTE). Are you interested? Then please read the full profile and apply.

ongeveer een jaar geleden


Domplein, Utrecht, Utrecht
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
36 - 40 uur
€ 3111 - € 5405 per maand


The Department of Chemistry at Utrecht University is seeking a highly-qualified colleague to strengthen the research activities of the cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) group in the field of in situ structural biology.

The successful applicant has a strong interest in the development and application of microscope instrumentation and will ensure optimal performance, innovation and management of cryo-EM equipment at Utrecht University. Within the multi-disciplinary team of the Utrecht EM facility ‘EM square’ (covers life sciences, chemistry, physics and geo-sciences) the successful applicant will be primarily responsible for three dedicated cryo-instruments: FEI Talos Arctica with Gatan GIF and K2, FEI Aquilos cryo FIB/SEM, FEI CorrSight cryo light microscope. These instruments enable a workflow for structural characterization of specific molecular processes in the cell. The position requires excellent communication and organizational skills because it also entails education and advice of users in qualified use of the equipment, enabling world-class research. Biological research questions will primarily be pursued in collaborations within the cryo-EM group and beyond.

Responsibilities and duties:

  • establish a workflow integrating cryo-electron tomography, cryo focused ion beam (FIB) milling, and correlative cryo light microscopy;
  • train and advise users also (PhD) students, in electron microscope use;
  • together with the EM Facility Manager take care of primary microscope equipment of the group: FEI Talos Arctica (incl Gatan GIF and K2), FEI Aquilos cryo FIB/SEM, FEI CorrSight cryo light microscope;
  • develop a research line along in situ structural biology. The research is expected to be initially in close collaboration with the Chair of the group and may then become increasingly independent based on extramural funding.


  • PhD in a field related to structural biology such as biophysics, biochemistry, cell biology or physics/material science, and postdoctoral experience
  • Preferably experience in structural and/or cellular biology
  • Expertise in operating complex instrumentation and experience with automation software systems. Preferably, this experience is in the fields of transmission and scanning electron microscopy.
  • Good communication- and management skills
  • Strong motivation to develop technical equipment enabling biological discovery

We strongly encourage qualified women to apply.


The starting date will be determined by mutual agreement. The candidate is offered a tenure track position, which will be subject to a mid-term evaluation after approximately 2,5 years and a final evaluation after five years. If the evaluations are positive the position becomes permanent. The criteria to be met and the details of the track will be mutually agreed upon before the appointment, but will include success in research and education. The gross salary - depending on the candidate’s qualifications and work experience - is in the range between €3,111 and maximum €5,405 (scale 10/11/12 Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) gross per month for a full-time employment. Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8,3% per year. We offer a pension scheme, collective insurance schemes, flexible employment conditions (according to a multiple choice model), working-from-home facilities and partially paid parental leave. Facilities for sports and child care are available on our campus, which is only 15 minutes away from the historical city centre of Utrecht. For further information: working at Utrecht University.

Additionele informatie

Additional information about the vacancy can be obtained from Prof. Friedrich Förster, tel.nr. 030-2534318 or f.g.forster@uu.nl

As part of the selection procedure, the candidate is expected to give an outline of his/her research plans in a written report and an oral presentation.


A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Sustainability.

The city of Utrecht is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, with a charming old center and an internationally oriented culture that is strongly influenced by its century-old university. Utrecht city has been consistently ranked as one of the most desirable places to live in the Netherlands.

The Faculty of Science consists of six departments: Biology, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Information and Computing Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, Chemistry and Mathematics. The Faculty is home to 5600 students and nearly 1500 staff and is internationally renowned for the quality of its research. The Faculty's academic programmes reflect developments in today's society. Read the overall impression 2016 of the Faculty of Science.

The position will be embedded in the cryo-EM group that aims to observe molecules at work in their physiological environment, ultimately the cell. The group specializes in cryo-electron tomography (cryo-ET) as the main imaging modality and combines it with biochemical and cell biological approaches, as well as advanced image analysis. Specifically, the research in the cryo-EM group focuses on structural studies of membrane-associated processes in their native settings. These aims are pursued by a highly interdisciplinary team, covering biochemistry, biophysics and computational sciences. The cryo-EM group is embedded in the Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research of the Department of Chemistry.