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Postdoc at Johns Hopkins University in x-ray phase contrast imaging

Todd Hufnagel's picture

The research — We use x-ray phase contrast imaging (XPCI) to study deformation and fracture of materials under dynamic loading on microsecond and sub-microsecond time scales. For example, we might like to measure the change in pore size distribution of a granular material such as sandstone under impact loading. Answering this question requires us to address theoretical and computational questions of XPCI image interpretation, and also poses an interesting challenge to the experimentalist.

The opportunity — Join a team that is part of a large multi-institution research initiative, the Materials Science in Extreme Environments University Research Alliance (MSEE URA), that brings together researchers with multidisciplinary expertise spanning advanced imaging techniques, dynamic behavior of materials, machine learning, uncertainty quantification, and other areas. The goal of MSEE URA is to understand, predict, and control the behavior of materials in extreme conditions in order to mitigate the effects of weapons of mass destruction.

What you’d do — Depending on your expertise and interest, you might develop new theoretical or computational approaches to XPCI image interpretation, or conduct static and dynamic XPCI studies of materials using the most advanced synchrotron and laboratory-based facilities available anywhere. Ideally, you’d do both.

A unique facility — We have recently installed a novel instrument for XPCI and high-energy diffraction microscopy (HEDM) in our laboratory at Johns Hopkins. This instrument has a second-generation Metalljet D2+ liquid In-Ga-Sn x-ray source operating at up to 700 W with a spot size as small as 5 µm. The propagation distance for XPCI is variable up to 3 m, and multiple detectors (large-area and high resolution) are available. The instrument will also have a parallel-beam monochromator to enable high-energy x‑ray diffraction microscopy (HEDM) studies of crystalline materials, along with a loading stage for in situ studies of materials under compression and tension. 

Your background — Candidates for this position must have an earned doctorate in physics, materials science, or a related field. The strongest candidates will have experience with experimental, theoretical, and/or computational aspects of XPCI. Candidates with experience in coherent imaging more generally, time-resolved studies of materials using synchrotron radiation, or dynamic deformation and fracture of materials are also encouraged to apply.

To apply — Please send a single PDF containing a résumé or CV, copies of up to two relevant publications, and the names and contact information for three references to Bess Bielucykz (


Women and minorities are especially encouraged to apply.  Johns Hopkins University is an EEO/AA employer.

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