A Research Platform for Singapore

Research Assistant/Master’s thesis (Microalgae growth optimization and protein assessment)

Posted Date:23 May 2024
Closing Date:Open until filled
Hours:Part Time
Duration:Fixed term contract



TUMCREATE is a multidisciplinary research platform of the Technical University Munich (TUM) at the Singapore Campus for Research Excellence and Technological Enterprise (CREATE). We are joining forces with universities, public agencies, and industry for the advancement of future technologies. 

Our large-scale Food Science ‘Proteins4Singapore’ program is funded by Singapore’s National Research Foundation (NRF). The Technical University Munich (TUM) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) join forces with the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) and A*STAR’s Singapore Institute of Food and Biotechnology Innovation (SIFBI) to research plant-based proteins.

Please visit www.tum-create.edu.sg for more information about TUMCREATE.


Project Title: Microalgae growth optimization and protein assessment

The project Proteins4Singapore aims to address Singapore's aspiration to identify domestically grown protein-rich raw materials for the production of novel foods. To this end, the cultivation of microalgae in highly urbanized environments will be investigated.

With the growing demand for sustainable protein sources, microalgae present a promising solution due to their high protein content, area-efficient cultivation, and low environmental footprint. In this master’s project, the goal is to optimize microalgae cultivation processes to maximize growth and protein production, focusing on media optimization, to make the process more efficient and, finally, cost-effective.

The initial phase involves identifying and optimizing growth media formulations tailored to specific microalgae strains. Various nutrient compositions and ratios will be explored to determine the most conducive environment for robust growth and protein synthesis. 

Moreover, protein measurement techniques will be employed throughout the cultivation process to accurately assess total protein yields and monitor variations in protein content under different growth conditions. Quantitative methods such as Bradford assay or Lowry assays will be utilized for rapid and reliable protein quantification. 

This project aims to contribute to the sustainable production of protein-rich microalgae biomass, addressing the global need for alternative protein sources while considering economic feasibility and scalability for industrial implementation.


Applied Methods:
Microalgae sterile cultivation, batch cultivation, grow kinetics, Protein analytics, spectrophotometry. 


Job Responsibilities:

Laboratory Work and Experimentation:

  • Conduct hands-on microalgae cultivation: inoculation, cultivation, parameter set-up, monitoring, and harvesting.
  • Conduct protein extraction and quantification.
  • Collaborate with the research team to optimize protocols and methodologies.
  • Investigate factors affecting productivity and protein production.

Data Collection and Analysis:

  • Analyze results using appropriate statistical tools and software.
  • Summarize findings from scientific literature related to microalgae protein production
  • Contribute insights from your research to project reports and your master’s thesis.

Collaboration and Communication:

  • Present your research findings during team meetings.
  • Actively participate in discussions with fellow researchers, and project leads.


Job Requirements/Competencies:

Educational Background:

  • Currently enrolled in a Master’s program with a reputable university in fields such as: Biotechnology, Microbiology, Bio-/Chemical Engineering and related areas.
  • Possess a Bachelor’s degree in relevant fields, including: Biology, Biotechnology, Chemistry and related areas

Experience and Attitude:

  • Laboratory experience is beneficial for this position.
  • A strong willingness to learn, contribute, and work independently is equally important.

Essential Skills:

  • Attention to Detail: Precise data collection and adherence to protocols.
  • Analytical Thinking: Ability to interpret experimental results and troubleshoot.
  • Teamwork: Collaborate effectively within a multidisciplinary team.

This internship provides an opportunity to work on cutting-edge research at the intersection of biotechnology, sustainability, and food science. The successful candidate will gain practical experience in a dynamic and international research environment and contribute to Singapore’s protein innovation landscape.

We encourage curiosity, creativity, and a passion for scientific exploration.

Feel free to reach out if you have any further questions or need clarification!


What TUM CREATE offers you

  • Medical insurance support
  • Good amount of leave/vacation days
  • Multicultural, vibrant, modern and positive working environment in Singapore
  • Campus-sited office location with a host of facilities
  • In-building perks including gym, game room and coffee room



Please send your application including cover letter and CV to hr@tum-create.edu.sg.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

We look forward to your application.