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University of Toronto, Dept. of Chemistry

Research Associate (Limited Term) - Active Matter, Reaction Dynamics and Particle-Based Simulation



Job Description

The Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto invites applications for a Research Associate (Limited Term) for a two-year appointment. The anticipated start date is February 1, 2018.

The Research Associate will work in the group of Prof. Raymond Kapral in the Department of Chemistry on research funded by NSERC. Information on the Chemical Physics Theory Group can be found at The successful candidate will carry out theoretical and computational research on a number of topics dealing with the dynamics of synthetic chemically propelled nanomotors including, among others: the construction of microscopic models for self-diffusiophoretic motors, studies of their collective dynamics in simple and complex media, and investigation of nonequilibrium fluctuations in such chemically active systems. The successful candidate may collaborate on these topics with other members of the University of Toronto as well as researchers from other institutions.

The successful candidate will develop theoretical models for chemically powered nanomotors, carry out analytical and numerical studies of continuum reaction-diffusion and hydrodynamic equations applied to these systems, and construct and implement algorithms for particle-based simulations of motor dynamics. Applicants should also have good communication skills and be able to prepare their work for scientific talks and publication in scientific journals.

Specific duties will include: Formulation of theory and theoretical models for systems of chemically propelled nanomotors, molecular machines and other active systems; obtain solutions of reaction-diffusion and hydrodynamic equations under diverse nonequilibrium conditions; construction and execution of parallel computer codes for multiparticle collision dynamics; analysis of data obtained from simulations in relation to experiment and theory; preparation of reports and scientific papers on research results.

Work Hours: 36.25 hours per week


Education: PhD in chemical physics, physical chemistry or physics


  • Demonstrated experience (3 years or more) with synthetic nanomotors. 
  • Experience in carrying out both analytical and computational research. 
  • Experience with constructing coarse-grain and full molecular dynamics algorithms and computer codes for use in high-performance facilities is an essential prerequisite for this position;
  • Experience in the construction of coarse grain models for molecular machines and synthetic motors;
  • Experience in constructing kinetic theory models for reactive dynamics.

Required Skills:

  • Strong analytic skills and demonstrated critical thinking ability; 
  • Ability to synthesize new knowledge from experiment, theory, and background science; 
  • Good presentation skills (meetings, conferences); 
  • Ability to generate new research ideas or approaches; 
  • Ability to work on several different projects simultaneously;
  • Knowledge of multi-particle collision dynamics and experience in writing codes for parallel computer architectures that implement this algorithm, especially with regard to applications to active chemically reacting systems; 
  • The ability to construct models for chemically powered motors on both microscopic and macroscopic scales.

Travel: Limited

Notes: Applicants should apply on the UofT Careers site: and include a covering letter, curriculum vitae and the names of three references with their contact information by the closing date of November 3, 2017.  Any questions regarding this position should be directed to Susan Arbuckle at

The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons/persons of colour, women, Indigenous/Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Contact Information

University of Toronto, Dept. of Chemistry
Susan Arbuckle
Posting Date: 02-Oct-2017Science and Research Contract, Full-Time 24.00  Months Open 101-Feb-2018
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