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Analytical and numerical study of spin hydrodynamics for ultrafast magnetism (Advert Reference: RDF20/EE/MPEE/IACOCCA)

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, January 24, 2020
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Ultrafast magnetism studies the fastest dynamics in magnetic materials. The control of such dynamics is promising for a new generation of ultrafast information storage technologies based on magnetic materials. For this, it is imperative to develop analytical models and numerical techniques that both inform and explain experimental results. A new approach to model ultrafast magnetism interprets the dynamics in the context of fluid dynamics, so-called “spin hydrodynamics”.

The main goal of this project is to develop a spin hydrodynamic model to analytically and numerically study the ultrafast dynamics of magnetic materials. A secondary goal is to deepen the connection between magnetic and fluid dynamics with emphasis in dispersive hydrodynamics, rare events, and turbulence. The original research performed in this project will contribute to the development of ultrafast magnetic storage.

The successful candidate will have a solid background in applied mathematics or theoretical physics with strong analytical and programming skills. Introductory understanding of asymptotic methods, dispersion of waves, finite differences, solid-state physics, and quantum-mechanics is essential. Knowledge in magnetisation dynamics, electromagnetic waves, and fluid dynamics is desirable. Throughout the development of the project, the candidate is expected to interact with an international, multidisciplinary team of researchers and present research outcomes at national and international conferences in both poster and oral formats. The candidate will have access to experimental data taken at X-ray user facilities, e.g., EU-XFEL, in order to validate or improve the mathematical models. As such, the candidate will have the opportunity to process, analyse, and interpret high-quality experimental data.

The principal supervisor for this project is Dr Ezio Iacocca. The second supervisor will be Professor Gennady El.

Please note eligibility requirement:
• Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
• Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
• Applicants cannot apply for this funding if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.

For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see

Please note: Applications that do not include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words (not a copy of the advert), or that do not include the advert reference (e.g. RDF20/EE/MPEE/IACOCCA) will not be considered.

Deadline for applications: Friday 24 January 2020

Start Date: 1 October 2020

Northumbria University takes pride in, and values, the quality and diversity of our staff. We welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award in recognition of our commitment to improving employment practices for the advancement of gender equality.

Funding Notes

The studentship is available to Home/EU/Worldwide students where a full stipend, paid for three years at RCUK rates (for 2019/20, this is £15,009 pa) and full fees.


[1] Iacocca et al., “Spin-current-mediated magnon localisation and coalescence after ultrafast optical pumping of ferromagnetic alloys”. Nature Communications 10, 1756 (2019)
[2] Iacocca, Silva, and Hoefer, “Breaking of Galilean invariance in the hydrodynamic formulation of thin film ferromagnets”. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 017203 (2017)
[3] Biondini, El, Hoefer, and Miller. “Dispersive hydrodynamics: preface”, Physica D 333, 1 (2016)

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