Critical study of bulk and surface-induced polymorphism of molecular semiconductors

Polycrystalline spa is hiring a first stage researcher within the framework of the UHMob MSCA ITN action (GA n°811284).

Please find a detailed offer and requirements below.


The PhD student will be inserted in the R&D team at Polycrystalline spa, a Small-Medium size Enterprise (SME) based in Medicina (BO) that since 2005 operates in the field of the solid state chemistry with an extensive expertise in the pharmaceutical area for crystal forms discovery and process development.
The hosting of the student will be shared with the Molecular Crystal Engineering group at the University of Bologna (located in the city centre) which also will provide access to Dept. of Chemistry labs and instrumentation facilities.
As Higher Education Institute, University of Bologna will deliver the PhD degree.
The two teams together count a staff of about 20 researchers working in different solid-state areas spanning from polymorphism, design and development of crystalline materials (salts, cocrystals, ionic crystals, organic semiconductors), bulk crystallization process development, optimization and scale-up.
Polycrystalline spa and University of Bologna Dept. of Chemistry provides excellent facilities for research including extensive X-ray services (XRPD, VT-XRPD, SC-XRD), Vibrational spectroscopy (FT-IR, FT-Raman) thermal analysis (DSC, HSM, TGA-EGA), optical microscopy, particle morphology and PSD analysis.
The long-term collaboration in place with several experienced academic group in the solid state field allows the possibility to access also TEM, SEM and ss-NMR facilities as well as other characterization techniques.
The activity proposed for the PhD student is inserted in an international 11 consortium members collaboration for the exploitation of molecular semiconductors to contribute to elucidate charge transport mechanism, to explore new physical concepts, to create new perspectives of industrial developments, and to give a novel impetus to the maturing field of organic electronics.
The polymorphism exhibited by this type of materials plays a key role in the definition of their performances for charges transport.
The research project will be focused on the comparison in a critical way of bulk and substrate-induced polymorphism for best-performing semiconductors. To rationalize results in terms of first principles and to link them to nucleation and growth phenomena. The aim is to gain a fundamental understanding of the polymorphism of molecular semiconductors. This knowledge will help to devise strategies to control, and even predict, the occurrence of polymorphism of molecular semiconductors in operating OFETs.
The PhD student will have the opportunity to spend two periods as visiting researcher at two consortium partners facilities.
He/she will be hosted for 6 months in late 2020 at Graz University of Technology (TUGraz) supervised by Roland Resel. The purpose of the visiting will be to transfer knowledge on substrate-induced polymorphism and to get trained on diffraction methods to identify it and on methods to solve crystal structures from GIWAXS data.
The second visiting period will be hosted at University of Cambridge (UCAM) for 3 months in early 2022 and supervised by Henning Sirringhaus. The purpose is to study polymorphism in operating OFETs, i.e. phase transitions that could result from charge transport.

Research field(s): Solid state chemistry


Scheduled research stays abroad (secondments):

  • 6 months at Graz University of Technology (Austria)
  • 3 months at University of Cambridge (United Kingdom)
  • Required education level: Master’s degree or equivalent in Solid state chemistry
  • Required languages: English (Level: Good)
  • Required research experience (<4 years): Solid state chemistry
  • Skills/Qualifications: Master’s degree in chemistry or material science with knowledge of solid-state characterization,  X-Ray diffraction and with basic  knowledge of organic chemistry. The successful candidate will hold a Master’s degree in chemistry or material science. A strong background in solid-state characterization, X-Ray diffraction and thermal analysis is required. Experience with organic semiconductor materials is considered to be a plus. The multidisciplinary project will cover organic, computational and solid-state chemistry. The will to learn advanced characterization techniques and tools, as well as a strong interest in cross disciplinary research are expected from the applicant.


  • To have obtained or to be about to obtain a Master’s degree (or a title at equivalent level) in chemistry. At the day of hiring, applicants must have been awarded a Master or equivalent degree.
  • To be in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers.
  • Not to have been awarded a doctoral degree.
  • Not to have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Italy for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date (Mobility Rule).
  • Applications must be written in English.
  • Application must be complete.

After application review, the candidates fitting the qualification requirements will be contacted for a first interview by telcon (Skype or other). A further face-to-face meeting will be proposed if considered requested for the final selection.


Please send your application to uhmob-recruitment [at] eurtd [dot] com including the following items:

  • A letter of motivation referring to UHMob-ESR14, explaining why you apply to this position and how a PhD would suit your career objectives?
  • A detailed CV including publications (if any).
  • Two reference contacts.

Reference to be indicated in the email Subject: UHMob-ESR14



Main location

Polycrystalline spa
Solid state R&D department
Via F.S. Fabri 127/1
40059 Medicina (BO), Italy

Location Secondment n°1

Graz University of Technology
Institute of Solid State Physics

Petersgasse 16
8010 Graz, Austria

Location  Secondment n°2

University of Cambridge
Cavendish Laboratory
Department of Physics
Thomson Avenue
CB30HE Cambridge, United Kingdom

General information

Type of contract Temporary (36 months)
Job status Full time
Hours per week 40
Application deadline The deadline for application is August 15, 2019. Applications will be evaluated in a continuous way and positions will be filled in as soon as possible
Envisaged job starting date 01/11/2019