PostDoc Position: Parallelized Production of Microbubbles in Microfluidics

The University of Twente has a new vacancy; PostDoc Position: Parallelized Production of Microbubbles in Microfluidics!

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Functie omschrijving

The Physics of Fluids group is part of the MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology, of the Technical Medical (TechMed) Centre and, since 2018 is also a Max Planck Center for complex fluid dynamics. The activities of the group encompass turbulence, soft matter, wetting, granular flow, biomedical flow imaging, ultrasound, microfluidics and nanoscale flow, phase change dynamics, heat and mass transfer. The group therefore offers a rich, multidisciplinary and very international (over a dozen nationalities) environment where experimental physics, theoretical physics and large scale simulation work in synergy to approach a collection of physical problem that span from fundamental to applied and from curiosity-driven research to industry-driven research. The group is in embedded within an international network and promotes international collaboration and exchanges.

Ultrasound contrast agent microbubbles allow real-time organ perfusion imaging, with demonstrated relevance for tumor detection and characterization. Novel monodisperse microbubbles offer a 100 times improved imaging sensitivity in addition to precision control for therapeutic ultrasound applications. Microfluidics facilitates well-controlled production of monodisperse microbubbles, however low yield from a single device hinders its clinical translation at present. Nozzles can be parallelized to upscale the production rate, however, crosstalk and flow instabilities may lead to loss of monodispersity and bubble stability. Here we study the problem of physically controlling the microscale flows in a multiple-nozzle head by combining elementary high-speed flow physics and bubble interfacial physics of the stabilizing formulations. The research objectives are, first, to derive a full flow quantification model of the device, then to study parametrically the role of lipids and gas composition on bubble production stability. The final goal of the project is to gain a full understanding of the flow characteristics of the upscaled microfluidic chip and to have independent flow control of production frequency and microbubble size, thus obtaining perfect monodispersity at high production rates. Being safe and cost effective, these efforts fall seamlessly within the Healthcare roadmap for non-invasive quantitative imaging, including precision therapy.

This project will be performed in close collaboration with Bracco Suisse, leading company in ultrasound contrast agents.

Keywords: monodisperse microbubble/ultrasound/microfluidics

Vacature details

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You hold a PhD degree in on physics or engineering, or an equivalent field of research.

  • You are a good experimentalist and are interested in theory and simulation work
  • You have a strong interest in microscale fluid dynamics and interfacial physico-chemistry
  • You have experience in microfluidics

You are fluent in English, both spoken and written. Knowledge of French is not necessary but appreciated.


You will be appointed on a fulltime position for two years, within a very stimulating scientific environment. The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues.

Starting salary ranges from € 3.255 to € 4.274 gross per month depending on your background, relevant experience and qualifications, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) of the Dutch Universities;

  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%;
  • A solid pension scheme;
  • Professional and personal development programs;

A high degree of responsibility and independence. Collaborating colleagues, within and out of the university is highly encouraged.

Bedrijfsprofiel Universiteit Twente

The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which leads change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university of the Netherlands; divided over five faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. We have a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out groundbreaking research.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status or disability status. Because of our diversity values we do particularly support women to apply.

Within the TNW Faculty (Faculty of Science & Technology) of the University of Twente some 700 staff members and 2000 students are involved in training and research on the interface of chemical technology, applied physics and biomedical technology. Fields of application include sustainable energy, process technology and materials science, nanotechnology and technical medicine. Research, which enjoys a high profile both at home and internationally, has been accommodated in the multidisciplinary research institutes: Mesa+ Institute, TechMed Centra and Digital Society Institute. The faculty works together intensively with industrial partners and researchers in the Netherlands and abroad and conducts extensive research for external commissioning parties and funders.


Closingdate: 1 August 2019

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