Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

15 PhD positions in an Innovative Training Network (Marie Skłodowska-Curie MSCA-ITN) in Terahertz Photonics (TERAOPTICS Project 956857)

This job offer has expired

    University Duisburg-Essen
    EngineeringElectronic engineering
    EngineeringMaterials engineering
    PhysicsSolid state physics
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    30/11/2020 23:00 - Europe/Athens
    Multiple locations, see work locations below.
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions


Applications are invited for 15 PhD positions (Early Stage Researchers) to be funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN) “TERAOPTICS – Terahertz Photonics for Communications, Space, Security, Radio-Astronomy, and Material Science”. TERAOPTICS is a consortium of high-profile universities, research institutions and companies located in France, Germany, Lithuania, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

The available 15 ESR positions:

ESR 1: Coherent and powerful generation using THz source arrays

Host Institution: University Duisburg-Essen, Germany

Objectives: The purpose of this project is to develop arrays of photonic mediated THz sources to tackle the actual power limitations. Currently, the safe saturation current for THz photodiodes is below 10 mA allowing up to about a few 100 µW output power at 300 GHz. This research project will develop a novel 300 GHz multilayer waveguide technology for hybrid integration with a THz photodiode array.

ESR 2: Integrated optical THz beam steering arrays

Host Institution: University Duisburg-Essen, Germany

Objectives: Due to the high free-space path loss at THz frequencies, moderate output powers and receiver sensitivities, future mobile THz applications such as THz communications but also mobile THz sensing for material identification (security, material science) must utilize meta-surfaces providing directive and steerable THz beams. The aim of this research is to investigate approaches for THz beam steering and to integrate photonic phase shifters and wideband optical true-time-delays with mediated THz sources developed in the network to demonstrate <1 THz beam steering.

ESR 3: Coherent and powerful generation using THz source arrays

Host Institution: University of Lille, France

Objectives: The purpose of this project is to develop THz sources tackling the actual power limitations within photomixers. This implies both arrayed structures to be developed at THz frequencies and coherent and stable dual-frequency lasers or frequency combs to feed these arrays to enhance the optical to THz conversion ratio. The developed devices will be used to demonstrate wireless data links in the THz range.

ESR 4: Smart THz integration using III-V and silicon technologies

Host Institution: University of Lille, France

Objectives: The purpose of this project is to enable smart approaches for core THz devices integration by investigation of new methods for packaging at mm-wave and THz frequencies. In this project, we target to develop smart integration of mm-wave and THz devices using laser-machined micro-packages, enabling ‘functional packaging’ at THz range. Core devices to be integrated here will be considering both III-V and silicon THz photonics devices.

ESR 5: Photonic integrated mode locked structures for highly stable Terahertz signal generation

Host Institution: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain

Objectives: This key objective of this research project is to study and develop photonic integrated mode locked lasers as optical signal sources for frequency-stable and low-phase noise Terahertz signal generation for pumping SBD mixers.

ESR 6: Photonic integrated light engines for THz spectroscopy with frequency and phase scanning

Host Institution: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain

Objectives: This research project will develop a photonic integrated THz frequency domain spectrometer THz FDS, using the self-heterodyne technique based on an optical heterodyne source. The key expected outcome of this research work is a Terahertz frequency domain spectrometer light engine prototype.

ESR 7: Integrated UTC photodiode, SBD receiver for high sensitivity satellite seceiver

Host Institution: University College London, UK

Objectives: This project will look at the possibility to create a highly sensitive room temperature operating THz receiver that can be pumped optically. For this work the ESR will be expected to develop a fully integrated receiver for THz signal. This will include the study to develop a novel InP based Schottky Barrier Diode that could be easily integrated within the standard growth of a UTC-PD, while also looking at hybrid integration with GaAs based SBD.

For more information visit: https://www.euraxess.org.uk/jobs/572647

ESR 8: Optimised antenna designs for Earth observation from UTC-PDs

Host Institution: University College London, UK

Objectives: While development in photomixers has progressed in the last 20 years, one of the key remaining problem has been to optimise the out-coupling of the THz wave for a given application. The work will concentrate on Earth observation and will look at optimising antenna designs for the given bands of interest.

For more information visit: https://www.euraxess.org.uk/jobs/572647

ESR 9: Diffractive optics integration with THz detectors and emitters 

Position filled

Host Institution: Center for Physical Sciences and Technology, Lithuania

Objectives: The purpose is to develop high efficiency diffractive lenses in order to replace refractive optics. The silicon-based multi-level phase-correcting Fresnel lenses including antireflective structures as well as the free-standing-film Soret zone plate lenses for up to 4.7 THz for high focusing efficiency and very short focal length will be developed.

ESR 10: Photomixer based, waveguide-integrated THz receiver array

Host Institution: Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz-Institut, Germany

Objectives: The purpose of this project is to develop photomixing terahertz receivers that are fully compatible to photonic and hybrid integration technologies. On the emitter side waveguide integrated photonic THz sources such as UTC-PDs and PIN-PDs have been demonstrated. On the receiver side, photomixers are still top-illuminated, which prevents them from being directly compatible with photonic integration technologies that rely on optical waveguides.

ESR 11: Power combining and Schottky integration

Host Institution: RAL Space, UK

Objectives: The purpose of this research is to build an integrated heterodyne THz receiver for ≥ 300 GHz. This project targeted outcome is for the ESR to apply power combining approaches to build a GaAs or InGaAs heterodyne receiver with a photonic local oscillator. She or he will design the devices, then assemble and test the power combined source. This project will achieve several integration firsts and will provide the ESR with an excellent training in numerical and practical aspects of photonic and conventional Schottky terahertz design.

For more information visit: https://www.euraxess.org.uk/jobs/575965

ESR 12: Optically pumped THz mixer

Host Institution: ACST GmbH, Germany

Objectives: The purpose of this research is to study optical mediated THz mixers and detectors. The vision of this research work is to enable monolithic integration of a low-barrier diode mixers and high power photodiodes as LO pump source. The research will contribute to the fundamental research challenge of optically mediated THz mixing and detection. Optical heterodyne LO signal generation has been demonstrated with lower phase noise and a much wider tuning bandwidth as compared to electrical approaches. The integration of a low-barrier mixing diode and a high-power frequency-tunable photodiode would thus enable an ultra-wideband THz mixer for the first time. The research work will also address the monolithic integration of on-chip planar THz antennas with the mixer diodes to allow coupling of the THz signal and the LO signal.

ESR 13: Realization of solid-state lasers for millimetre-wave to THz signal generation

Host Institution: THALES Research and Technology, France

Objectives: The purpose of this project is to develop efficient and ultra-stable dual-frequency lasers at 1.55 µm. This laser will feed photomixers developed by partners to generate powerful and coherent THz radiation.

ESR 14: Low phase noise photonic THz sources

Host Institution: Microwave Photonics GmbH, Germany

Objectives: This research is aimed at developing new optical methods and processes for developing photonic integrated low phase noise reference oscillator chips. The research also aims at locking those photonic reference oscillator chips with optical heterodyne generators for low phase noise photonic THz generators. This technology platform will be beneficial for applications including THz communications and material science such as THz scattering spectroscopy.

ESR 15: Photonic Systems for THz spectroscopy and imaging

Host Institution: DAS Photonics, Spain

Objectives: This research is aimed at developing new methods and processes for THz sensing platforms based on the quasi time-domain spectroscopy (QTDS) for applications in material sciences, such as THz scattering spectroscopy. This research activity is aimed at developing an optically-mediated multi-frequency and beam-steerable THz source tool to expand the application field of THz Photonics to material sciences and spectroscopy. Work in this activity will contribute to the expansion of non-destructive material testing for material characterization and identification in the THz domain as well as for THz imaging.

More Information


Benefits and Salary

The MSCA programme offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. The successful candidates will receive a salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for Early Stage Researchers. Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment [Living Allowance = 3270 euro/month (correction factor to be applied per country) + monthly mobility allowance = 600 to 1100 euro depending on the family situation]. In addition to their individual scientific projects, all fellows will benefit from further continuing education, which includes secondments, a variety of training modules as well as transferable skills courses and active participation in workshops and conferences. The approximate gross salary stated above is subject to employer's statutory deductions and the amount varies according to the living costs of the host country.

Eligibility criteria

Early Stage Researchers (ESRs): All researchers recruited must be Early Stage Researchers. ESRs are those who, at the time of recruitment by the host are in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. This is measured from the date when they obtain the degree which formally entitles them to embark on a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited, even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged).

Conditions of Mobility of Researchers: Researchers are required to undertake physical, transnational mobility (i.e., move from one country to another) when taking up their appointment. Researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host organisation for more than 12 months in the 3 years prior to their recruitment. Short stays, such as holidays, are not taken into account. Note that the mobility rule applies to the (first) beneficiary where the researcher is recruited, and not to beneficiaries to which the researcher is sent or seconded.

English Language: ESRs must demonstrate that their ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English is sufficient for them to derive the full benefits of the network training.

Selection process

General guidance for applicants: All vacant ESR positions at individual partner institutions are also being advertised locally by the respective institutions. These local/individual advertisements will have further details including local closing dates.

To apply, please make an initial informal contact with the project manager or the primary supervisor of the project you are interested in with a copy of your CV and a brief note of your research interests and career ambitions. Following subsequent screening, potential candidates will be advised to make a formal application for the ESR position, and if successful, also to PhD study at the given or nominated partner university. The selection process will include a formal interview with the short-listed candidates. The recruitment process for each position will continue until a suitable candidate has been identified and accepted the PhD position offer.

We support equal opportunity and we are committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. Applications from women and those from an ethnic minority are encouraged.

Additional comments

Number of available positions: 15 PhD positions


General Contact Person:

Dr Andreas K. Klein

TERAOPTICS Project Manager

University Duisburg-Essen

Email: andreas.k.klein@uni-due.de

Please state subject “TERAOPTICS APPLICATION” and name the project (“ESR x”) you are interested in to establish contact. You can apply to one, multiple or all projects. You MUST indicate that your personal details can be shared with the respective project partners within the TERAOPTICS ITN in your application email. Without your consent we will not forward your personal data.



36 months

Research Fields

Electrical and Electronic Engineering – Electronics and Nanoscale Engineering – Semiconductors – Optical Engineering – Photonics - Terahertz Technology


Terahertz, optoelectronics, terahertz sources, terahertz detectors, terahertz systems, photonics.

Career Stage

Early Stage Researcher (ESR) or 0-4 years (postgraduate)

Key dates

Application closing date: 30. November 2020 (or until filled).

The project will formally kick off on 01. September 2020 and so we are looking to have ESRs starting on this date or soon thereafter, preferably within 6 months of this start date at the latest.


This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 956857.


Offer Requirements

    Engineering: Master Degree or equivalent
    Physics: Master Degree or equivalent
    Technology: Master Degree or equivalent
    Other: Master Degree or equivalent
    ENGLISH: Excellent


Detailed requirements for the individual positions are available in the job advertisements of the respective host institutions.



The European Training Network (ETN) TERAOPTICS - Terahertz Photonics for Communications, Space, Security, Radio-Astronomy, and Material Science will train a new generation of creative, innovative and entrepreneurial early-stage researchers (ESR) in the field of THz Photonics able to transform new ideas, groundbreaking research and advanced technologies into innovative THz products and services for a sustainable economic and social development in the targeted application areas: communications, space, security, radio-astronomy and material science. TERAOPTICS will raise excellence in THz Photonics by integrating a structured research program and doctoral training. It will extend the traditional academic research setting by incorporating open and inter-disciplinary research elements in an international and inter-sectorial network environment consisting of solely renowned, highly experienced and equipped academic and non-academic beneficiaries in the field of Terahertz Photonics (4 universities, 2 research institutes, 3 SMEs, and 2 industry) and 13 academic and non-academic partners. TERAOPTICS will enhance the career perspectives of the ESRs through international, interdisciplinary, and inter-sectorial mobility combined with an innovation-oriented mindset.

Terahertz (THz) radiation, generally defined as electromagnetic radiation in the frequency range 0.3–3 THz, is attracting considerable interest owing to potential applications in high-bandwidth and high-data-rate THz communications, satellite-to-satellite wireless links, THz spectroscopy for discovering star building in radio astronomy, high-resolution imaging and localization for security and in general for non-destructive material characterization and identification. Because of very recent scientific breakthroughs such as photonics mediated generation of ultra-low phase noise THz signal generation, THz Photonics is seen as a key enabling technology for a variety of applications. Thus, the overall research goal of the TERAOPTICS network is to overcome current and internationally recognized scientific challenges to advance the Terahertz field while training the new generation and researchers and innovators. More specifically research-wise, the project aims to exploit the fundamental scientific knowledge of the breakthroughs to develop photonic mediated semiconductor-based THz sources, THz mixers, and THz detectors and integrated functional receivers and transmitters for future mobile THz systems in the targeted application fields.

Work location(s)
2 position(s) available at
University Duisburg-Essen
2 position(s) available at
University of Lille
2 position(s) available at
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
1 position(s) available at
Center for Physical Sciences and Technology
1 position(s) available at
Fraunhofer - Heinrich-Hertz-Institut
1 position(s) available at
Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
United Kingdom
1 position(s) available at
1 position(s) available at
THALES Research and Technology
1 position(s) available at
Microwave Photonics GmbH
1 position(s) available at
DAS Photonics
2 position(s) available at
University College London
United Kingdom

EURAXESS offer ID: 547266


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