Postdoc position in Reactive Transport Modeling in Porous Media

Updated: about 2 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 04 Nov 2020

The research group “Durability of Engineering Materials” at the Institute for Building Materials (Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering) at ETH Zurich, Switzerland, performs research at the interface of material’s science, corrosion science and engineering. Our mission is to deliver the scientific basis needed to ensure safety, durability and sustainability of our civil infrastructures.
We invite applications for a PostDoc position. Likely starting date: January 2021 with some flexibility.

Project background

Transport of moisture and ions through the pore structure of cementitious materials are highly relevant processes for the durability of engineered structures such as bridges, because these processes may lead to reinforcing steel corrosion or to other forms of material’s degradation. In our research group, we have a number of projects addressing the underlying scientific questions, namely by combining approaches from corrosion science, environmental sciences, and reactive transport modeling. We use computational methods to develop a model framework that takes into account both the moisture and ion transport processes in the cementitious matrix as well as (electro-)chemical reactions occurring in the porous medium, and fundamentally considers the coupled corrosion process at the metal surface. We perform experiments to deliver the needed model input and validation data, taking advantage of latest developments in in-situ sensing techniques (pH, O2, Cl–) and microstructural characterization.

For more information, visit our website at .

Job description

As a PostDoc in our group, you are expected to autonomously carry out research work within the area of reactive transport in porous, cementitious media as described above. You contribute to the scientific development and implementation of the numerical model. Contributions through experimental work delivering the needed validation data are also possible, such as related to moisture retention and transport, ion movement and distribution, microstructural characterization, or iron species characterization.

You co-supervise doctoral students working in our group, and you supervise BSc and MSc students in their projects. You expand your research portfolio, and you represent our research group through publications and presentations at international conferences. If you wish to, you may contribute to teaching activities.

The conditions of employment are based on the Swiss Federal Personnel Act and the ETH Personnel Ordinance. The salary rates of PostDocs are in agreement with the employment conditions of ETH (covering living expenses). See:

Your profile

Successful applicants should hold a PhD degree in an area relevant for the research described above, ideally with a background in numerical modeling. Experience with reactive transport modeling in porous media, such as ion/moisture transport in building materials or reactive transport processes in geochemical contexts, are a valuable asset for your dossier. Knowledge in corrosion is not required, but would be an advantage. Proficiency in written and oral English, as well as maturity and self-motivation, are necessary. Above all, candidates should be enthusiastic, curious, and creative in what they do.

ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.


We look forward to receiving your application with the following documents: CV, motivation letter, degree certificates, and names and contact information of two references. Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered.

For further information please contact Prof. Dr. Ueli Angst ( ) or Dr. Zhidong Zhang, ( ) or visit our website at .

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