Postdoc Position in Chemical Engineering – Hydrothermal Liquefaction Process Development

    Postdoc Position in Chemical Engineering - Hydrothermal Liquefaction Process Development

    Postdoc Position in Hydrothermal Liquefaction Process Development is available at Department of Biological and Chemical Engineering, Aarhus University, Denmark.

    Deadline to Apply

    Jul 16, 2021 (23: 59 GMT +1)


    PositionPostdoc Position
    No. of Position(s)1
    Research Area– Chemical Engineering
    SalaryAccording to standard norms
    WorkplaceDepartment of Biological and Chemical Engineering
    Aarhus University
    Contract Period2 Year
    Starting dateSept 01, 2021


    • PhD in chemical engineering, process engineering or similar (or about to complete the degree).
    • The ability to design engineering process equipment and experience in process control (e.g. Labview or similar)
    • Experience in operating continuous flow reactors  
    • A solid background in thermochemical processing of biomass, biorefining, biofuels or related areas
    • The ability to work independently and to generate new ideas and creative approaches
    • The ability to write high impact, peer reviewed academic publications
    • Is passionate about science and engineering and working in a team dedicated to green technologies


    • Prior experience in operation, design and maintenance of chemical processes in the biorefining/biofuel sector at pilot scale is desired
    • A strong academic background in applied research and publication record are expected
    • The candidates must demonstrate ability to conduct basic and applied interdisciplinary research, and experience with technology transfer from university to industry is beneficial
    • It is important that the applicant has the ability to independently design and construct process equipment based on high pressure fittings (e.g. Swagelok), installation and programming of sensors and process control (e.g. Labview, Labjack, Matlab or silmiar)
    • Prior experience in this type of work is essential. Additional professional certificates, qualifications and experience in e.g. Health and Safety, electrical work, mechanical engineering, programming are an advantage
    • Experience in analysis of biomass, biofuels and bioproducts using equipment such as elemental analysis, HPLC, GC-MS and similar are a valuable skill for the candidate

    Responsibilities/ Job Description

    • The main responsibilities of the candidate will lie in: planning and execution of pilot scale HTL campaigns
    • The modification of the existing pilot scale HTL reactor for improved performance and efficiency and the testing of this
    • The design, construction and commissioning of a new novel unit operations to improve future HTL reactor designs e.g. in-line filters, product separation, catalytic beds and similar
    • Chemical analysis of HTL products, data processing and analysis from experimental campaigns to produce scientific publications and reports
    • Active participation in the supervision and training of MSc, BSc and PhD students

    How to Apply?

    To apply, please click APPLY ONLINE button mentioned above.

    Documents Required

    The application must be in English and include

    • A curriculum vitae
    • Degree certificate
    • A complete list of publications
    • A statement of future research plans and information about research activities, teaching portfolio and verified information on previous teaching experience (if any). Guidelines for applicants can be found here.

    About Research project

    The position is available through an European Research Council Starting Grant for Associate Professor Patrick Biller. The project is called “REBOOT – Resource efficient bio-chemical production and waste treatment” and runs for five years starting on 1st January 2020. The aim of the project is to shed light on some of the fundamental scientific questions in the Hydrothermal Liquefaction (HTL) process relating to ash chemistry, catalysis and wastewater valorisation. The project is quite unique as fundamental research is directly transferred to an existing continuous-flow pilot scale HTL reactor

    The work will expand on the on-going research using a state of the art, continuous, hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) reactor at the Centre for Biorefining Technologies at the Foulum Campus of Aarhus University.The HTL plant is currently one of the largest worldwide in academic settings and allows testing of unique and novel ideas at a relevant scale for industry. The work will be carried out as part of a growing team working in hydrothermal processing (carbonization and liquefaction) with currently two faculty members, two postdocs, three PhD students, technicians and varying amounts of MSc students and BSc students

    There are several research projects on-going within the HTL field dealing with heterogeneous catalysts, process water management, HTL of synthetic polymers, waste management, usually these are closely tried to industry. Findings from the on-going research in these projects, which are often performed in batch scale will be applied and implemented in the continuous pilot plant, which will be the task for the applicant in support of the other team members.

    About the Department

    The Department of Biological and Chemical Engineering Within Chemical Engineering, the BCE Department has strong research sections in Environmental Engineering and Materials & Process Engineering. Close collaboration with our neighbouring Departments (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Molecular Biology & Genetics, iNano, Biosciences, Food, Agroecology and Chemistry) is a natural part of our culture. The successful applicant will be working with Chemical Engineering and will produce and disseminate knowledge and research results. Translation of results into solving relevant societal challenges is a highly prioritized part of our work.


    • Research activities will be evaluated in relation to actual research time. Thus, we encourage applicants to specify periods of leave without research activities, in order to be able to subtract these periods from the span of the scientific career during the evaluation of scientific productivity.
    • Letter of reference : If you want a referee to upload a letter of reference on your behalf, please state the referee’s contact information when you submit your application. We strongly recommend that you make an agreement with the person in question before you enter the referee’s contact information, and that you ensure that the referee has enough time to write the letter of reference before the application deadline.
    • Unfortunately, it is not possible to ensure that letters of reference received after the application deadline will be taken into consideration.


    Patrick Biller,
    Associate Professor

    Official advertisement

    Postdoc in Hydrothermal Liquefaction Process Development

    Post expires at 8:59am on Friday July 16th, 2021 (GMT+9)