A 24-month postdoctoral position (renewable up to 36 months) is open at CNRS (Toulouse, France). The position is fully funded through the French National Research Agency.


Project description:

Modeling spin transport in heterostructures in the presence of spin-orbit coupling (SOC) presents different challenges on both conceptual and technical aspects. To date, most theoretical predictions have been achieved using model-like systems neglecting the orbital character of the conduction electrons, involving only a handful of bands and assuming a simplified version of SOC effects.

The project aims to develop an effective and predictive modeling platform around ab initio quantum transport, enabling simulations of realistic spintronic and spin-orbitronics devices. We will develop new functionalities in the previously developed electron transport codes (TranSIESTA and a homemade TB code) based on the nonequilibrium Green’s function (NEGF) formalism.

– We will implement new tools for quantifying and predicting spin-orbitronics properties in nanostructures.

– We will develop a large-scale ab initio quantum transport platform for spin-orbit transport properties in 2D van der Waals interfaces and tunnel junctions containing topological spin textures such as skyrmions, anti-skyrmions, or bimerons.


– Applicants should hold a Ph.D. degree in Physics, Materials Science, Nanosciences, or a closely related discipline, with a strong background in DFT and solid-state physics.

– Good programming skills (Fortran or Python) are mandatory.

– Experience in code development, quantum transport simulations based on NEGF, or SOC-related physics is considered an advantage.

What do we offer?

– A three-year working contract (funded by the French National Research Agency)

– Supervision by Dongzhe Li (CNRS permanent researcher)

– Working in an innovative and exciting CEMES/CNRS institute (>60 permanent researchers)

– Strong collaborations with internationally recognized theory groups.

Timeline, salary and benefits

– The selection process will be ongoing until the position is filled. The starting date is January 1st, 2024 (or before/later after negotiation). The duration of the employment is two years but renewable for up to 3 years.
– The net salary is about 2250 ~ 3300 Euros/month, depending on the experience.
– Health insurance is provided. A good quality of life can be maintained as Toulouse offers a relatively low cost of living.

International collaborations

The project will be done in tight collaboration with the theory group at the CEA-Saclay (Alexander Smogunov, Cyrille Barreteau) and the quantum transport theory group at the Technical University of Denmark (Nick Rübner Papior, Mads Brandbyge). An external stay in Paris or Copenhagen is planned.

Application instructions

All applicants should send the following documents in a single PDF file to dongzhe.li@cemes.fr with an email title of “Pdoc-CNRS”.

– CV

– Publication list

– Cover Letter

– Two reference letters


E-mail: dongzhe.li@cemes.fr

Website: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=-Nklb7cAAAAJ&hl=en

Recent publications of the PI on the topic

[1] Dongzhe Li*, J. Bertelsen, N. Papior, A. Smogunov, M. Brandbyge, “Surface states and related quantum interference in ab initio electron transport”, Phys. Rev. Research 3, 033017 (2021).

[2] Dongzhe Li*, S. Haldar, and S. Heinze, “Strain-Driven Zero-Field Near-10 nm Skyrmions in Two- Dimensional van der Waals Heterostructures”, Nano Letters 22, 7706-7713 (2022).

[3] Dongzhe Li*, S. Haldar, and S. Heinze, “Tuning the magnetic interactions in van der Waals Fe3GeTe2 heterostructures: A comparative study of ab initio methods”, Phys. Rev. B 107, 104428 (2023).

[4] Dongzhe Li*, S. Haldar, and S. Heinze, “Proposal for all-electrical skyrmion detection in van der Waals tunnel junctions”, arXiv:2309.03828