Post-doctoral researcher

IBM Zurich Research Laboratory

WorkplaceZurich, Zurich Region, Switzerland
Pre-doctoral position

Chemical Ising Solver (CIS)

Ref. 2022_054

We are seeking a highly motivated candidate for a PhD position in the project CIS - "Chemical Ising Solver", a project funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

The goal of this project is to establish a radically new computing scheme that relies solely on molecules for computation and for provision of energy. We will explore new ways to handle chemical reactions in microscopic compartments, to read and manipulate them via light and electro-chemical signals, and to establish the transport of information between them. The vision is to create a computing scheme that operates with molecular efficiency, that is, close to the fundamental limit of energy consumption.

You will explore oscillating chemical reactions progressing in micrometer-scale compartments as building blocks for a complex chemical computing system. You will study the coupling of such compartments mediated by molecular diffusion and/or electrochemical signals. The final goal of the project is to implement a purely chemical Ising solver which can tackle computationally hard problems, e.g., the traveling salesperson problem.

You will be part of an interdisciplinary team working in the ’Physics and Science for Information’ group at IBM Research GmbH. You will be mentored by Dr. Heiko Wolf and Dr. Armin Knoll. Part of the project is in collaboration with Harvard University.

The successful candidate will enjoy an internationally competitive salary and work with collaborative and creative groups in an exclusive research environment.
The project should start in the first half of 2023.


  • A Master’s degree in Chemistry, Physics, or a related field.
  • Good communication and English-language skills.
  • Previous research experience in surface chemistry, electrochemistry, microfabrication, soft materials, or local probe methods would be beneficial.


IBM is committed to diversity at the workplace. With us you will find an open, multicultural environment. Excellent flexible working arrangements enable all genders to strike the desired balance between their professional development and their personal lives.

How to apply

Please submit a single PDF file containing a cover letter, curriculum vitae, transcripts, and contact information for at least two references.
In your application, please refer to and reference JobID 58865.

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