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  Dr S Hanham  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

Recent advances in high-speed electromagnetic solvers and optimisation techniques is allowing for the automated discovery of new photonic structures which control the flow of light. This technique called topological optimisation or inverse design allows for the algorithmic design of the topology of dielectric structures which satisfies one or more desired functional characteristics. This approach has been successfully applied towards the design of antennas, filters, splitters and diplexers at optical wavelengths. A summary of this work can be found at

This PhD project will develop topological optimisation techniques for the terahertz band (0.1 to 10 THz) and apply it towards the design of novel photonic devices for future terahertz communication and sensing systems. This will likely involve performing electromagnetic simulations on high performance computers, cleanroom fabrication and electromagnetic characterisation.

The PhD candidate should have completed (or be about to complete) his/her undergraduate degree in Electronic Engineering or Physics (preferably with first class honours or equivalent). The PhD candidate is expected to have a keen interest in electromagnetism and strong computational skills. Details of the project will be agreed upon with the successful candidate to tailor the research to their interests.

The research programme will take place in the Emerging Device Technology (EDT) research group ( in the Department of Electrical, Electronic and System Engineering at the University of Birmingham.

For details of the funding available, advice on applying or any other informal enquiries, please contact Dr Stephen Hanham at [Email Address Removed]. Applications can be submitted at by including the title of the project and the name of the supervisor (Dr Stephen Hanham).

Funding Notes

Funding is awarded on a competitive basis, is only available to UK/EU nationals and covers the tuition fees and provides a living stipend for 3.5 years. Non-UK/EU candidates with the correct qualifications will be considered if they are self-funded or have secured their own funding.
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