Postdoctoral Research Associate – Cryo-Electron Microscopy

Website DiamondLightSou Diamond Light Source

Business Area: Science
Full Time Salary: £33,297 to £39,172 per annum (Discretionary range to £45,048)
Post Type: Full time / Fixed term
Term: 3 years
Closing Date: 29/03/2020
Ref No: 10292

About Us

Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron science facility. By accelerating electrons to near light-speed, Diamond generates brilliant beams of light from infra-red to X-rays which are used for academic and industry research and development across a range of scientific disciplines including structural biology, physics, chemistry, materials science, engineering, earth and environmental sciences.

The Electron Bio-Imaging Centre (eBIC) at Diamond provides scientists with state-of-the-art experimental equipment and expertise in the field of cryo-electron microscopy (CryoEM), for single particle analysis and cryo-tomography.

About the Role

We now have an opportunity for a highly motivated PDRA to carry out their own innovative research in the development of new methods in high-throughput cryo-electron tomography. Research will concentrate on enhancing the throughput and applicability of the technique to complex biological problems, frequently utilising samples prepared onsite by focussed ion beam milling.

This role will form part of our outstanding eBIC and BioImaging group which includes five Titan Krios microscopes all equipped with Falcon III and Gatan Quantum K2/K3 detectors. A Talos, Glacios, Scios and Aquilos dual-beam are also onsite along with the B24 cryo structured illumination microscope for correlative work.

You will utilise and benefit from Diamond’s existing expertise in data collection and data processing in X-ray imaging.

You will also have the opportunity to play an active role in interacting and potentially collaborating with the rapidly expanding EM community based at Harwell such as ePSIC, The Research Complex at Harwell (e.g. CCP-EM), and The Rosalind Franklin Institute, as well as other collaborations.

This opportunity provides a unique position to perform novel studies integrating state-of-the-art technologies with new method development. These studies will systematically explore new frontiers in cryoET.

Further responsibilities will include:

  • Performing experiments, analysing data and publishing results;
  • Supporting users in performing experiments, including data analysis and training;
  • Assisting eBIC staff with EM commissioning, instrument upgrade, development and testing of new equipment and software.
  • Keeping up with latest results and research directions internationally;
  • A flexible approach to working hours is required, along with occasional UK and overseas travel including some overnight stays.

About You

You should hold an appropriate science degree and a PhD in a structural biology or an electron microscopy related field.

Previous knowledge or experience at postgraduate level in cryoEM is desirable, as is experience with Windows/Linux/Unix, scripting (E.g. Python) or programming, and experience with operating a FIB-SEM.

You will be an enthusiastic scientist with a demonstrable record of accomplishment in conducting high quality original research.

You will demonstrate excellent interpersonal, communication and presentational skills to interact with staff and facility users at all levels


Diamond offers an exceptional benefits package to ensure an excellent work/life balance including 25 days’ annual leave, 13 days statutory and company holidays, flexible working hours, an onsite nursery, an excellent pension scheme, and social and sporting activities.

To Apply

Applicants are required to outline their suitability for this role via the online application process. Please also state where you saw this role advertised.

Other information

Where relevant, and possible for the role, we will consider flexible working arrangements and secondment opportunities.

Diamond attract talented individuals from around the world and currently employ 39 different nationalities.  Reflecting trends in our sector we employ more men than women (78% men and 22% women as at 5 April 2019). Therefore, in accordance with law and good practice, we particularly welcome applications from suitably qualified women.

If you are disabled and would like to be considered under the Guaranteed Interview Scheme, please let us know via the online application process.

Diamond are members of Working Families (the UK’s work-life balance organisation), we have also achieved the Athena SWAN Bronze award and Disability Confident Level One.

To apply for this job please visit