Research Assistant/Associate in 'Everyday AI for Electron and X-ray microscopy' (Fixed Term)

The University of Cambridge is one of the world's oldest universities and leading academic centres. If you're looking for a new challenge and would like excellent benefits, extensive learning opportunities and a stimulating working environment in return for your skills and contribution, there could be a job here for you.

We invite applications for a Post-Doctoral Research Assistant/Associate (PDRA) in the development of 'Everyday AI' tools for electron & X-ray microscopy at the University of Cambridge. The position is funded by Horizon Europe through the EXCITE 2.0 network - a consortium of 18 research facilities spread across 12 European and associated partner countries providing transnational access to advanced imaging technologies for Earth and Environmental material research. The Task "Everyday AI" seeks to build on the successful research-level software tools developed as a part of the EXCITE 1.0 network ( to create service-level software tools - powered by advanced AI and machine learning methodologies - and place them in the hands of the EXCITE 2.0 user community.

The successful candidate will be hosted jointly by the Department of Earth Sciences and Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy under the guidance of Prof. Richard Harrison, Prof. Paul Midgley, Dr. Emilie Ringe and Dr. David Wallis. The post-holder will have access to the outstanding microscopy facilities and communities of both departments. They will work as part of a broader team focussed on the development of AI tools for electron and X-ray microscopy throughout the EXCITE 2.0 network.

The post-holder will have two primary responsibilities: 1) research, development, and delivery of software tools for AI/ML-powered microscopy workflows and 2) supporting the delivery of Transnational Access (TNA) to the electron microscopy facilities based at the University of Cambridge (including Transmission Electron Microscopy, Focussed Ion Beam nanotomography, Scanning Electron Microscopy, Electron Backscattered Diffraction and Electron Microprobe). The post-holder will also be given opportunity to pursue their own research in a relevant area of Earth and Environmental material research.

Applicants must have (or be about to obtain), a PhD in a relevant scientific discipline. Applicants should have a working knowledge of transmission electron microscopy and experience in electron imaging, focused-ion beam methods, and/or X-ray imaging. Applicants should also have experience in the development of machine learning tools and proficiency in Python programming would be highly beneficial. The successful candidate will be highly motivated, have a strong publication record (commensurate with their career stage) and good communication skills.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available until 31 March 2028 in the first instance.

Earliest start date: The position is available from 01 April 2024.

Salary ranges: Research Associate: £36,024 - £44,263 (Grade 7). Appointment at Research Associate level is dependent on having a PhD. Those who have submitted but not yet received their PhD, will initially be under-appointed as a Research Assistant (Grade 5, Point 38 - £32,982), moving to Research Associate (Grade 7) upon confirmation of their PhD award.

Click the 'Apply' button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

Interested candidates should contact Prof. Richard Harrison for more information (

Please ensure that you upload your Curriculum Vitae (CV), a covering letter and publications list in the upload section. If you upload any additional documents that have not been requested they will not be considered as part of your application.

Please quote reference LB40342 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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