PhD-student: Spatial coherence control for metrology applications

Date posted March 29, 2021
Type PhD positions

As a PhD student, you will develop new methods for spatial coherence control. You will create a new type of bright laser sources with optimized coherence functions and wavefronts. Your work will help advance metrology tools for future semiconductor technology.

The progress of the semiconductor industry has a great impact on our everyday life. The rapid development of digital technologies became possible due to improvements in optical nanolithography machines. However, printing the smaller and smaller transistors raises more and more challenges. It is crucially important to develop quick and accurate metrology sensors.

Coherence is among the fundamental properties of light and one of the key parameters of the light sources used for metrology. A compact and low-cost instrument that allows to optimize desired spatial coherence of a bright laser source will have a great impact on metrology accuracy. A multimode fiber, is a very promising solution for tailoring the spatial coherence.

In this project, you will explore the different possibilities and potential of multimode fibers to tune spatial coherence of a bright laser source. Full control on coherence and shape of the wavefront within a compact low-cost fiber-based system can potentially increase metrology accuracy and robustness for the semiconductor industry.

You will perform this project in the research group ‘Nanoscale Imaging and Metrology’ and will collaborate with researchers from various other research groups at ARCNL and the VU University Amsterdam. The research will be done in close collaboration with ASML and SCHOTT.

About the group

The Nanoscale Imaging and Metrology group is a research group at ARCNL, headed by Dr. Lyuba Amitonova. The research activities aim at developing new techniques for fast and accurate characterization of 3D multi-layer nanostructures for better metrology tools.

The Advanced Research Center for Nanolithography (ARCNL) focuses on the fundamental physics and chemistry involved in current and future key technologies in nanolithography, primarily for the semiconductor industry. ARCNL is a public-private partnership between the Dutch Research Council (NWO), the University of Amsterdam (UvA), the VU University Amsterdam (VU) and the semiconductor equipment manufacturer ASML. ARCNL is located at the Amsterdam Science Park, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and is currently building up towards a size of approximately 100 scientists and support staff. See also


We are looking for an enthusiastic candidate with an MSc or equivalent degree in physics or a strongly related field. A background in optics, (coherent) imaging and/or ultrafast laser physics is a clear advantage. Affinity for performing optical experiments, solve mathematical problems and working as part of a team are considered important. Candidates should have experimental skills and be able to communicate in English. The project’s results will be presented on national and international conferences and in relevant journals. The successful candidate is expected to write a PhD thesis towards the end of the 4-year project.

You will need to meet the requirements for an MSc-degree, to ensure eligibility for a Dutch PhD examination.

Terms of employment

The position is intended as full-time (40 hours / week, 12 months / year) appointment in the service of the Netherlands Foundation of Scientific Research Institutes (NWO-I) for the duration of four years, with a starting salary of € 2,441 and a range of employment benefits. After successful completion of the PhD research a PhD degree will be granted at VU University Amsterdam. Several courses are offered, specially developed for PhD-students. ARCNL assists any new foreign PhD-student with housing and visa applications and compensates their transport costs and furnishing expenses.

Contact info

Dr. Amitonova
Group leader Nanoscale Imaging and Metrology

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–  Resume;
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Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis and as soon as an excellent match is made, the position will be filled.

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