Analytical scientist

Posted Dec 7, 2020
Project ID: UNILJP00011571
, Drenthe
1 year
(Feb 1, 2021 - Jan 31, 2022)
32 hrs/week
Payrate range
35 - 55 €/hr

Business Context and Main Challenges of the Job

The Unilever Global Food Innovation Centre at the campus of Wageningen University is a major agro-food hub for launching breakthrough innovations in sustainable food production. A critical activity is compositional and structural analysis of ingredients and products in order to enable rational design of food formulations and processing routes. The analytical team strongly relies on NMR for delivering detailed compositional analysis to the Unilever innovation program.

The candidate will work in a team of four experienced spectroscopists of which two are specialized in high-resolution liquid state NMR. The experimental NMR work will be performed at the premises of Wageningen University where the high-field NMR spectrometers of Unilever are based. Extension of the contract is a possibility.

Core tasks:

Performing advanced NMR experiments to provide complex food compositions to the Unilever food and refreshment innovation programme.

Main Accountabilities

Responsibilities specific to the role: 

FO in performing NMR for food compositional analysis.

Translating project questions into food analysis using qNMR and LC-NMR techniques.

Coordinating own NMR work with flanking food compositional analysis techniques (LCMS, GCMS, IR) of colleagues in Applied Analytical.

Analyzing technical data and translating results obtained by NMR and flanking techniques into information that can be used to enable decision making in projects.

Development (<0.5 year time frame) of bespoke qNMR and LC-NMR methods.

Written internal reporting (ELN, VD) and oral presentations to Unilever project teams on deployment of own/flanking (LCMS, GCMS, IR) techniques for quantitative analysis of complex food compositions.

Translating Foods programme needs into proposals for (internal) capability building and Capex investments in NMR (>200 k€).

Leading the technical discussion in projects with external parties (suppliers, Academia, external laboratories). Reporting/presenting to external project teams.

Responsible for the maintenance and quality of the NMR equipment and the technical training/coaching of junior team members as well as Open Access users.

Key behaviours:

  • Real accountability
  • Action not debate
  • Team alignment

Key skills:

  • FO in qNMR and LC-NMR applications for analysis of complex food compositions
  • Development of bespoke qNMR and LC-NMR methods for compositional food analysis
  • Coordination of project work that involves flanking measurement expertises (LCMS, GCMS, IR) within the Applied Analytical team
  • Reporting and presenting skills (internal Unilever teams and external projects)
  • Liaising with external facilities for measurements/technical discussions on highly advanced NMR measurements (within/beyond WU Eco System)
  • Communication skills (Unilever teams and external)

Relevant experience:

  • +3 years experience in NMR analysis of food compositions
  • BSc degree in relevant subject (Analytical)
  • Development of NMR techniques for quantification and identification of actives in complex food compositions.

Any other critical personal characteristics

  • Able to recognize development in Unilever programme that necessitate introduction of externally (within/beyond WU Eco System) available technologies/expertise in the NMR (i.e. capability building proposals, Capex).
  • Interactive engagement in project teams for defining technical qNMR and LC-NMR approaches.
  • Ability to train and coach non-experts as Open Access users of NMR equipment.
  • Good organizational skills, ability to set own priorities to ensure OTIF delivery in a fast-paced project driven environment.
  • Ability to work in a multidisciplinary and multicultural team.
  • Must be fluent in English (oral/written).

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