PhD Position – Digital printing of sustainable inks for energy harvesting applications - CDD 36 month at IMT Nord Europe

Job description

Laboratory : Research Center for Materials & Processes – Center for Energy & Environment

Line Manager : Dr. HDR SAMUEL Cédric, Dr. DUC Caroline

Workplace : Douai

Type of contract and duration : PhD contract, 36 month


Public establishment belonging to IMT (Institut Mines-Télécom), placed under the supervision of the Ministry of Industry, IMT Nord Europe has three main objectives: providing our students with ethically responsible engineering practice enabling them to solve 21st century issues, carrying out our R&D activities leading to outstanding innovations and supporting territorial development through innovation and entrepreneurship. Ideally positioned at the heart of Europe, 1 hour away from Paris, 30 min from Brussels and 1h30 from London, IMT Nord Europe has strong ambitions to become a main actor of the current industrial transitions, digital and environmental, by combining education and research on engineering and digital technologies.

Located on two main campuses dedicated to research and education in Douai and Lille, IMT Nord Europe offers research facilities of almost 20,000m² in the following areas:

- Digital science,

- Processes for industry and services,

- Energy and Environment,

- Materials and Processes.

For more details, visit the School’s website :

A PhD position is offered on the digital printing of piezoelectric and conductive inks made from sustainable ressources to develop efficient vibrationnal energy harvesters (research program funded by Europe, SUINK project, Sustainable self-charging power systems developed by inkjet printing, This project gathers 12 partners all over Europe. IMT Nord Europe is in charge for the manufacturing of the energy harvesting system by an advanced printing system. We are looking for a highly-motivated candidate with a Master degree in the field of Material Science, in particular Polymer Science. Theoretical / practical knowledge on physico-chemical properties of polymers, structural characterizations of polymers and manufacturing processes of polymers are mandatory. Specific knowledge on 3D printing, biobased polymers and modification / functionalization of polymers will be appreciated. Candidates must be fluent in English with writing / communication skills. The annual salary is between approx. 25 – 30 k€. Various international travels will be required according to project needs.


The development of autonomous or self-powered IoT sensors represents a key challenge and energy harvesting technologies based on piezoelectric materials are attractive to convert vibrational mechanical energy into electrical energy. A next-generation of functional materials with a better balance between environmental footprints, materials / processing costs and technical performances is required for a large-scale deployment of vibrational energy harvesters. In this context, the Institute Mines Telecom Nord Europe is involved for several years into various research projects (for example, BIOHARV INTERREG project & GENEPI ANR project) dealing with sustainable piezoelectric materials, in particular biobased piezoelectric polymers, for the development of vibrational energy harvesters. Vibrational energy harvesters are made by combining several thin layers of active piezoelectric materials and conductive electrodes. The manufacturing of such devices could be done by digital printing from functional inks. IMT Nord Europe is currently investigating a new versatile printing machine. The SUINK project consequently aims to lift various locks associated to the digital printing of functional inks with an ambitious research plan.

The PhD candidate will be integrated to the “Research Center for Materials and Processes” and “Research Center for Energy and Environment” of the IMT Nord Europe. The PhD candidate will deal with the following scientific and technological missions:

  • Digital printing and high-voltage poling of piezoelectric inks (PVDF inks and sustainable piezoelectric inks) and characterization of piezoelectric properties
  • Digital printing of conductive inks (sustainable PEDOT-based inks) and characterization of electrical properties
  • Digital printing and design of advanced combinations between piezoelectric and conductive inks to develop resonant vibrational harvesters
  • Electromechanical testing and integration of devices into various case studies in the automotive industry.

A specific emphasis on the impact of process parameters and structural features of printed materials on the final properties of the material and performances of the devices will be done. Valorization activities are expected into national / international events and teaching opportunities at L2 to M2 levels will be also possible in the frame of the IMT Nord Europe formations.

Implications at the level of teaching will be possible in particular via courses, the realization of tutorials and/or practical work.

Job requirements



Physico-chemical and structural characterizations of polymers (DSC, FTIR, RX, etc…), Rheological characterizations of polymers, Processing of polymers, Oral & written communication skills


Physics and chemistry of polymers, Structure and properties of polymers, Rheology of polymers, Processing technologies of polymers, biobased polymers


The job is to be filled as to 01/09/2023 for a period of 36 month (temporary contract).


For any information on the missions, please contact:

Dr. HDR SAMUEL Cédric,

Dr. DUC Caroline,

For any administrative information, please contact the Human Resources Department:

The positions offered for recruitment are open to everyone with, on request, accommodations for candidates with disabilities.