Master Student Internship in Software development for SIMS image processing and simulation (M/F)

Updated: almost 2 years ago
Deadline: 22 Nov 2019


As a key player in research and innovation in Luxembourg, the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST), with its employees, is active in the domains of materials, the environment and IT. As an RTO (Research and Technology Organisation) and with its interdisciplinary impact-driven approach, LIST contributes to the development of Luxembourg’s economy and society. The Materials Research and Technology Department (MRT) translates cutting-edge materials research into applicable technology, with about 190 collaborators. For this, the department cultivates close relationships and joint projects with both academic and industrial partners, and contributes to Luxembourg's and Europe's innovation agenda in Materials Research and Technology.

The Advanced Instrumentation for Ion Nano-Analytics (AINA) group of the MRT department at the LIST is renowned for developing innovative nano-analytical techniques for materials characterization and life science applications. During the past few years we have been developing in particular a Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) add-on system for the Helium Ion Microscope (HIM) and for a Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM) as well as an Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) system that we integrated in our NanoSIMS, allowing the advantages of high spatial resolution with high sensitivity chemical information to be combined. The research activities of the AINA group cover fundamentals, instrument development and applications.


Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) imaging is a powerful technique for mapping chemical composition of materials at nanoscale. The secondary ions are produced by irradiating primary ions on the surface of the sample. A number of factors limit the SIMS image resolution. They can be grouped as instrumentation parameters (e.g. probe size, probe shape, transmission coefficient of spectrometer) and sample characteristics (e.g. elemental concentration, ionization efficiency). The SIMS image resolution is fundamentally limited by the ion-solid interaction size to ~ 10 nm. However, in practice, the SIMS voxel size is often larger and is determined by the intensity of the secondary ion signal for a given isotope of an element. As the image resolution is degraded by Poisson noise associated with the secondary ion counts statistics, if is often required to increase the voxel size to improve the signal to noise ratio. In this context, we offer a Master internship position to develop a software (Python, Matlab or similar) interface to visualize and process experimental as well as simulated data. Specifically, the different instrumental and sample parameters that contribute to the final image quality shall be made available in an GUI either as text input or preferably as a sliding bar while updating the images real-time and displaying the corresponding voxel sizes. At a later stage, the software may also include advanced functions to predict evolution of surface topography due to ion irradiation.



  • Master student in physics, computer science or similar with excellent programming skills


  • Good interpersonal skills


  • Proficiency in spoken and written English

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