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Photonic Integration & Advanced Data Storage

PhD and EngD opportunities available in EPSRC and SFI Centre for Doctoral Training in Photonic Integration & Advanced Data Storage

The PIADS Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) is a partnership between Queens University Belfast (QUB), the University of Glasgow (UoG) and the Irish Photonic Integration Centre (IPIC). We provide opportunities for applicants to research novel scientific and engineering developments in highly manufacturable photonic integration technologies with far-reaching applications related to the storage of digital information, telecommunications, biophotonics, healthcare and beyond.


  • Our PhD and EngD programmes lead to unique jointly awarded research degrees from both QUB and UoG.
  • 4-year studentships cover tuition fees and an annual maintenance stipend of £17,668 p.a. (+£5k tax free p.a for EngD students).
  • In year one, students spend time at both universities, completing a range of scientific and technical courses whilst engaging in exploratory research projects, before choosing and embarking on their research project.
  • Students manage their own (up to £27,000) research and training budget for costs such as start-up equipment, facility access, research consumables, travel and conference participation.

Want more info? Read about our activity in our annual research report!

Photonic Integration & Advanced Data Storage


CDT students undertake a diverse and exciting range of topical doctoral research projects which span physics, materials and electrical and optical engineering. They benefit from access to state of the art experimental and computational facilities at the James Watt Nanofabrication Centre and the Kelvin Nano Characterisation Centre at UoG, alongside the ANSIN advanced material research and development hub at QUB as well as in-house laboratories and semiconductor fabrication facilities at Tyndall National Institute.

View projects and apply here


Designed and delivered in close consultation with our impressive range of industrial partners, the PIADS doctoral programme provides exciting sponsored PhD and EngD opportunities with Seagate Technology, Causeway Sensors, Oxford Instruments Plasma Technologies and more.

  • PhD students complete their studies in the university setting whilst EngD candidates complete their research onsite with the industrial partner – both benefit from academic and industrial supervision and mentorship.
  • Every PIADS student benefits from ongoing opportunities to engage with our industrial partners through conferences, seminars, site visits and internships.
  • Exclusive access to the tailored “Teamwork and Collaboration Skills in a Cross-Geographical Environment” programme delivered by Seagate Technology - part of their Global Leadership programme.
“Photonics is a major growth area both in the UK and worldwide. Integrated photonics is a key driver and its application to data storage is set to underpin significant technology development. This CDT is therefore excellently positioned to drive forward vital R&D and ensure the provision of the necessary industrial skills. ”

- Mat Wasley, Knowledge Transfer Manager for Photonics, Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN).


  • Several fully funded opportunities for candidates who have, or hope to have, a 2:1 (or equivalent) in a cognate physical sciences or engineering discipline, such as physics, materials science, electrical engineering, chemistry or chemical engineering. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the suitability of your academic background and encourage you to get in touch by email to if you’d like to discuss your suitability to the programme. Interviews ongoing on ad hoc basis until all positions have been filled.
  • Please note that all of our international places have been filled for September 2023 entry.
  • All students should be available to start their programme of study from September 8th 2023.



Photonic Integration & Advanced Data Storage