Institute of Geology and Mineralogy,
University of Cologne, Germany

Postdoc position in organic (geo-)chemistry and
radiocarbon application

Position: Radiocarbon analysis is an important dating tool in geological, environmental, and archaeological sciences. If applied to samples containing carbon from different sources or including contaminants from the depositional environment, radiocarbon ages may, however, be biased. Such problems can be circumvented if source-specific organic compounds are isolated from complex samples such as sedimentary organic matter or bones for compound-specific radiocarbon analysis. Within in the framework of the DFG-funded CRC 806, we seek a motivated postdoctoral candidate to establish and improve chromatographic analytical methods including preparative LC/DAD and LC/MS for the isolation of different biomarkers including amino acids from bone samples and (phospholipid-) fatty acids from sediments. The position is based in the Geochemistry & Radiocarbon group ( and will be part of the interdisciplinary cosmogenic nuclide-dating center CologneAMS.


  • Establishment of LC/DAD and LC/MS-based preparative separation and isolation techniques for compound-specific AMS 14C analysis including blank C tests
  • Conversion of samples to AMS-amenable CO2 and graphite cathodes
  • Contribution to developments of micro-scale sample analysis with ultra-small graphitization as well as gas ion source AMS
  • Publication of results in peer-reviewed scientific journals


  • PhD-level degree in chemistry, environmental chemistry, geosciences, or related subjects with excellent grades
  • Practical experience in liquid chromatography
  • Preferably experience in (carbon) isotope analytical methods
  • Strong interest in technical and analytical work (method development and application)
  • Excellent knowledge of spoken and written English


  • The position is initially funded for 2 years (plus 2 years extension option). Salary and benefits will be according to German Public Service Sector salary group TV-L 13, 100% (approx. EUR 2300 per month/net).
  • The project will start on 01. Sept. 2017. Job interviews are tentatively scheduled to take place on 26./27. June 2017.

Application: Please send your documents as a single pdf document (letter of motivation, CV, certificates, names of 1-2 referees) by email to until 15. June 2017.

posted: 10 May 2017     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.