PhD in Electron-Excitation Fluorescence Superresolution

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Landelijk / geen vaste standplaats
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 uur
€ 2801 per maand

Electron-molecule interaction, cellular structure


Over the past few years, so-called superresolution fluorescence microscopy techniques have evolved tremendously: fluorescence labelled bio-molecules can now be localised with resolution far below the diffraction limit. However, with these techniques it is only the labelled molecules that are visible and thus the surrounding, unlabelled, cellular structure is invisible. Cellular structure can be measured with nanometre-resolution using electron microscopy, but precise correlation of superresolution fluorescence and electron microscopy data is highly challenging and limited by the very specific preparation protocols needed. In this project, we will take a radically different approach: we will use electrons to excite fluorescence from labelled bio-molecules. The fluorescence emission is then detected with a light microscope integrated inside an SEM. Contrary to previous approaches which used high-energy electron beams that led to fluorescence degradation, we will move to very low electron landing energies (a few eV) to reach near-resonant excitation. Simultaneous light-excited fluorescence, i.e. during electron irradiation, will be used to reveal details of electron-molecule interactions beyond the scale of what has been achieved so far. This will in turn lead to further optimisation of both irradiation conditions and molecular or fluorescent protein structures to enable fluorescence microscopy with electron beams.
The successful candidate will work with the integrated microscope to investigate electron-irradiation of fluorescent molecules.


Applicants should hold an MSc degree in experimental/applied physics or chemistry with a strong experimental background. Experience with fluorescence and/or electron microscopy is strongly preferred. The successful candidate easily communicates with scientists from other disciplines. He or she also has a hands-on mentality, has a good command of the English language, and easily and actively collaborates with other scientists.


The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre offers child care and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.
As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

For more information about this position, please contact J.P. Hoogenboom, phone: +31 (0)15-2785920, e-mail: Applications should include a CV, a half-page (A4) letter of application, and the name of at least one reference with your application. Applications should be addressed to Mrs. Anjella van Vliet, This vacancy will remain open until a suitable candidate has been found.
When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number TNWIP17-014.

Additional information

J.P. Hoogenboom
+31 (0)15-2785920

Technische Universiteit Delft


Delft University of Technology (the TU Delft) is a multifaceted institution offering education and carrying out research in the technical sciences at an internationally recognised level. Education, research and design are strongly oriented towards applicability. The TU Delft develops technologies for future generations, focusing on sustainability, safety and economic vitality. At the TU Delft you will work in an environment where technical sciences and society converge. The TU Delft comprises eight faculties, unique laboratories, research institutes and schools. Applied Sciences The Faculty of Applied Sciences of the TU Delft has a strong programme in Imaging Physics in which new instrumentation and new methods are developed for microscopy and medical imaging. The Imaging Physics programme has led to innovations in electron microscopy, lithography, light microscopy, ultrasound imaging, terahertz imaging, focused ion beam milling, and many quantitative image processing methods. Most of the instruments in the lab are prototypes with unique functionalities. Instrumentation development is done in collaboration with scientific and industrial users for evaluation and first scientific observations. We are looking for one PhD student to strengthen our team.

We invent, develop, and implement new methods and techniques for multi-scale, multi-modal microscopy. Our starting point is uncompromised integration of light and electron microscopy into a single instrument. This allows us to generate light microscopy signals with focused electron beams and to do electron microscopy guided by light. We actively strive for application of our techniques in biological and biomedical sciences, as well as nanoscience and nanophotonics. We also advance our fundamental understanding of interactions between electrons, photons, and molecules to further develop new techniques for imaging.


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