Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)

ESR 3 – Multimaterial 4D printed components and devices


The CSIC is the largest public research institution in Spain and one of the most renowned in the European Research Area (ERA). Research in the CSIC is structured in three main areas, Society, Life and Matter that cover most of the human knowledge, with more than 1,500 research groups and 120 Institutes distributed throughout the national territory.

The Institute of Nanoscience and Materials of Aragon (INMA) is a Joint Research Unit of CSIC and University of Zaragoza that carries out internationally recognized fundamental and industrial research in its area. Within INMA, the Advanced Manufacturing Laboratory (AML) is focused on the development of organic functional materials and their microstructuring using advanced processing tools progressing towards applications of interest in areas such as photonics, biomedicine and soft robotics.


Zaragoza is the fifth city in Spain in terms of population with 700,000 inhabitants being the safest big city in the country. Located in the north-east of Spain, is well communicated by fast train (1h 30min travel time) with the Spain’s two biggest cities, Madrid and Barcelona. Zaragoza is a lively city with a diverse cultural offer. Zaragoza is full of large squares and spacious pedestrian areas in the centre, a huge city park, kilometres of bike lanes, etc.



Carlos Sánchez Somolinos



Dirk Jan Broer (Technical University of Eindhoven)

Jesús Martínez de la Fuente (CSIC)


Contact email address of the supervisor:

Research project

4D printing successfully combines 3D printing and stimuli-responsive polymers offering unparalleled opportunities for the preparation of soft actuators that can transform the way soft robots are envisaged. In particular 4D printing of liquid crystal elastomers (LCEs) enables the preparation of structures with a precise control of the polymer morphology and therefore a precise programming of the mechanical response when the structure is exposed to the right stimulus. The additive character of 4D printing enables the preparation of multi-material components facilitating, for example the implementation of smart responsive multifunctional robots.

The ESR project targets the preparation of new printable materials responsive to different triggers, to create intelligent structures and devices. The potential of these smart responsive elements for applications in different sectors such as for example medicine will also be explored. The selected ESR will be hired by CSIC and will develop her/his activity at the Advanced Manufacturing Laboratory at INMA in Zaragoza (Spain) performing secondments in Technical University of Eindhoven. Preceyes and Holst Institute (TNO) in Eindhoven (The Netherlands) and in the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom).

PhD programme – University: Doctoral Programme in Physics – University of Zaragoza


Required MSc degree in Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science or Engineering

English level: If English is not the candidate´s mother language a valid English certificate (at least B1) would be needed.

Desired skills:

We seek talented and motivated candidates with a background in soft matter preferably having background in liquid crystals and/or polymers. The candidate should have a strong motivation to carry out interdisciplinary experimental research and interest in theoretical work, team work capacity and critical thinking.

Specific requirements for the enrolment in the PhD Programme: