Doctoral Degree Program in Physics, Vrije Universiteit, The Netherlands

Expires on: 04/30/2024


Join the Quantum Metrology group at LaserLaB, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, for a PhD position focused on the first direct laser cooling and trapping of a homonuclear diatomic molecule, helium dimer (He_2). The project involves precision measurements of Rydberg states, facilitating Quantum Electrodynamics (QED) tests and providing the polarizability of He atoms for a quantum pressure standard. The PhD project aims to achieve the first ultracold gas of a directly laser-cooled homonuclear molecule, He_2. Novel laser slowing and cooling techniques will be applied to create a trapped dense gas of ultracold molecules, presenting a paradigm change in ultracold molecule research. The project offers engagement in experimental physics, including ultrahigh vacuum, CAD design, optics, lasers, electronics, and scientific programming. There is also an opportunity to explore the theory of molecular Rydberg states and collisions using scattering theory.


  • Bachelor/Master’s in Physics or Chemistry
  •  Affinity for atomic, molecular, or optical physics
  • Experience in laser physics, spectroscopy, and/or optical technology
  • Enthusiastic, team-oriented, and eager to learn
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Open to diverse backgrounds and experiences


  • Salary range: €2,770.00 (minimum) to €3,539.00 (maximum) gross per month, full-time
  • Initial 1-year employment contract, extendable to a total of 4 years
  • Attractive fringe benefits, including holiday leave, holiday allowance, and end-of-year bonus
  • Inclusive and diverse working environment
  • Opportunity to contribute to precision measurements and fundamental physics

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