Celignis is recruiting for a person who will undertake a 2-year post-doc position. The job will involve working on an EU research project that is expected to start in June 2018 as well as being responsible for the maintenance of our chromatography equipment.


Celignis is a biomass analysis laboratory, based in Limerick, Ireland, that characterises samples for properties relevant to the production of biofuels, energy, chemicals and biobased products. We are also involved in research, being a partner in two Horizon 2020 EU collaborative research projects related to the bioeconomy.

Celignis also has key IP based on our custom mathematical models that allow for the chemical composition of biomass to be predicted based on their near infrared (NIR) spectra.


We are recruiting for a person who will undertake a 2-year post-doc position at Celignis. The job will involve working on an EU research project that is expected to start in June 2018 as well as being responsible for the maintenance of our chromatography equipment. The position will involve the following main tasks:

  • Develop techniques to selectively remove and analyse extractive components from biomass.
  • Devise methods to separate/concentrate high-value chemicals from the extracts.
  • Undertake biomass pre-treatment (organosolv) experiments on virgin and extracted biomass.
  • Supervision of a PhD student and a number of lab analysts also working on this project.
  • Maintenance of our chromatography and mass spectrometry equipment.
  • Development of new commercial analysis packages for Celignis, based on the work undertaken in the research project and market needs.

We are a young ambitious start-up company with aspirations to expand our operations over the coming years. We are looking for someone who shares our ambition, motivation, and drive and will be comfortable working within a start-up and contributing the energies that would be required to facilitate its growth.

The position is for a 2 year post-doc, however if the new analysis packages described above result in a significant increase in revenue then the position can potentially be extended.

Requirements and Expectations

  • A PhD in analytical chemistry, chemical engineering, or another relevant discipline.
  • Experience in the analysis of lignocellulosic biomass.
  • Candidates that have experience in the removal and characterisation of biomass extractives will be preferred.
  • Several years of experience in the use of the GC and GC-MS equipment are required.
  • Candidates that also have experience in the use of HPLC and IC equipment will be preferred.
  • Highly computer literate and comfortable learning new software programs.
  • Be comfortable handling chemical data.
  • Strong command of spoken and written English.
  • Proven capability of writing reports and working to deadlines.
  • Integrate with and positively contribute towards the working practices, drive, and ethos of an ambitious start-up.
  • Motivated, takes the initiative, and willingness to develop new skills.


  • Undertaking the extraction, using accelerated solvent extraction (ASE) and other techniques, of lignocellulosic biomass using an array of different solvents and extraction conditions.
  • Analysing the extracts using a variety of equipment, in particular GC-FID, GC-TCD, GC-MS, IC, HPLC and NIR.
  • Identifying any potential high-value chemicals contained within the extract and formulating processes to concentrate and/or separate these.
  • Undertaking experiments related to the pre-treatment of lignocellulosic biomass and then analysing the outputs from this process.
  • Correlating extraction conditions with the yields and outputs of biomass pre-treatment.
  • Developing an optimised extraction process, considering the needs to recover high-value chemicals and optimise the outputs of biomass pre-treatment.
  • Writing scientific reports based on the work undertaken and adhering to deadlines, deliverables, milestones, and the reporting requirements of our EU research project.
  • Maintenance and validation of our chromatography equipment in accordance with the principles of ISO 17025 (a testing laboratory).
  • Supervision of a PhD student and lab analysts involved in undertaking biomass extraction/pre-treatment experiments and using our chromatography equipment.
  • Understanding the needs of potential Celignis clients with regards to new commercial analysis packages, particularly those based on the extraction/pre-treatment of biomass (and algal biomass) and the use of our chromatography equipment.
  • Developing new analysis packages to cater for these industry needs.
  • Presenting outputs of the work at research project meetings and conferences.
  • Interacting positively with Celignis management, lab workers, and research collaborators.
  • Dealing honestly in all matters relating to the Employer’s business.


€34,000 to €44,000 per annum, depending on the level of relevant experience.

Start Date

June 2018.

Deadline for Application

April 1st 2018.


If you have relevant experience and qualifications please contact Dan Hayes on 061 518 440 or email a cover letter, explaining how you fulfil the requirements, and an up-to-date CV to

Applications that do not include a cover letter will be rejected. CVs that do not include the grade achieved at undergraduate/postgraduate level will also result in rejection of the application.


See this vacancy on Celignis' website.