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2D material enhanced nonlinear integrated photonics (EPS2020/19)

Project Description

The project focuses on studying the nonlinear optical properties of numerous 2D materials and how to interface them with low-loss integrated photonics for the creation of novel ultra-fast all-optical devices.

Transition metal dichalcogenide (TMD) monolayers have recently emerged as a new class of semiconductors with a non-centro-symmetric lattice structure that enables very strong nonlinear response. The fundamental characterization and exploitation of nonlinear TMD is at its infancy but preliminary results point towards a bright future in all-optical integrated photonics. The project aims at performing a deep nonlinear characterization of different TMD monolayers (nonlinear spectral shaping, frequency conversion, etc.) and subsequently integrating these 2D materials with ultra-low loss Hydex-based photonic components (waveguides, couplers, resonators, etc.) to enable ultra-fast all-optical control. The project is mainly experimental, but the selected candidate will be working in close collaboration with theoreticians to also investigate the quantum aspects of the nonlinear processes involved. The applicative aspects will be developed in collaboration with prestigious industrial partners. Some flexibility is also expected to attend national and international meetings, conferences, and workshops.


All applicants must have or expect to have a 1st class MChem, MPhys, MSci, MEng or equivalent degree by Autumn 2020. Selection will be based on academic excellence and research potential, and all short-listed applicants will be interviewed (in person or by Skype). This scholarship is only open to UK/EU applicants who meet UK residency requirements set out by EPSRC.

Closing Date

All applications must be received by 28th February 2020. All successful candidates should usually expect to start in September/October 2020.

How to Apply

Apply Online -

When applying through the Heriot-Watt on-line system please ensure you provide the following information:
(a) in ‘Study Option’
You will need to select ‘Edinburgh’ and ‘Postgraduate Research’. ‘Programme’ presents you with a drop-down menu. Choose Physics PhD and select September 2020 for study option (this can be updated at a later date if required)
(b) in ‘Research Project Information’

You will be provided with a free text box for details of your research project. Enter Title and Reference number of the project for which you are applying and also enter the supervisor’s name.

This information will greatly assist us in tracking your application.

Please note that once you have submitted your application, it will not be considered until you have uploaded your CV and transcripts.

Funding Notes

The annual stipend will be approx. £15k and full fees will be paid for a period of 3.5 years.

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