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Computational Light Microscopy — Making the Invisible Visible

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

A fully-funded PhD studentship is available. The student will develop a novel 3D light microscopy technique to image through opaque samples. Although samples of interest are often translucent, the inherent heterogeneity of biological specimen affects light propagation and causes image blur deeper into the sample. This severely hampers the ability to directly investigate what happens beyond the first layers of cells. This project aims to overcome the physical imaging-depth limit of microscopy.

The successful candidate will combine adaptive optics, wavefront shaping and computational imaging methods. Although the work is ultimately aimed at biological applications, the initial testing will be performed on artificial sample phantoms. The project includes both the experimental aspects of the design and construction of the microscope optics and control electronics, as well as advanced computational analysis as an integral part of the imaging process. This project builds on previous work such as Airy beam light sheet microscopy and novel computational methods. The final instrument will be tested at the School of Life Sciences of the University of Dundee, top ranked in the UK.

The student will be based in the School of Science and Engineering at the City Centre Campus of the University of Dundee and will be supervised by Dr Tom Vettenburg. The newly established Computational Microscopy Lab recently received substantial funding from UK Research and Innovation to develop the next generation of computational microscopes. The student will be joining at an exciting time and at the centre of the action with ample opportunities to be involved at every aspect of the research.

This project requires a PhD student with a solid background in physics and mathematics, as well as experience in computer programming and a desire to apply theoretical knowledge to develop innovative solutions to the imaging-depth challenge in microscopy.

The ideal candidate should:

• be able to work independently and plan work to meet deadlines
• have a solid background in physics, mathematics, as well as computer programming
• understand electromagnetic wave propagation and optical image formation concepts
• be keen to acquire and apply theoretical knowledge to solve practical problems
• have proven problem-solving skills
• possess strong self-motivation and an enthusiasm for innovation and creative thinking
• have good communication skills, both written and spoken
• hold a first-class degree in physics or related discipline by the start of the PhD studentship

Applicants are invited to e-mail a CV with cover letter to . The cover letter should describe briefly why this specific project is of interest to you and how you meet the above criteria. Please contact Dr Vettenburg for further information about this PhD studentship.

Funding Notes

To be eligible for a fully-funded PhD studentship, covering tuition fees and an annual stipend set at UKRI rates, the candidate must have no restrictions on how long they can stay in the UK and have been ordinarily resident in the UK for at least 3 years prior to the start of the studentship (with some further constraint regarding residence for education, further guidance can be found on the EPSRC website).

Applications from self-funded students that identify a funding source from their home country are also welcome.

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