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Cosmology from the Cosmic Microwave Background

Project Description

The Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) provides a unique window into the early Universe and is a key probe of dark matter, dark energy, neutrino physics, inflation and cosmic dawn. During the last two decades, increasingly accurate CMB data have established a concordance standard model of cosmology; in particular, recent data from the Planck satellite set limits on the basic cosmological parameters to sub-percent precision. However, despite the success of the measurements, our standard model of cosmology relies on components and processes with unknown theoretical interpretation.

With the completion of the Planck mission, future developments are mostly expected from ground-based experiments. At Cardiff we lead science investigation of the CMB Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT) and Simons Observatory (SO) experiments. ACT is now observing with its 3rd-generation of receivers and will be overtaken by the Simons Observatory from 2021. Accurate measurements of the polarization of the CMB and of the CMB deflections due to gravitational lensing from ACT and SO will provide, during the next 5 years, new cosmological state-of-the-art results.

This project spans both understanding the data and investigating different cosmological models with ACT and SO observations. It will focus on how to best extract physics from the CMB small-scale region and how to use the Sunyaev-Zel’dovich effect as cosmological probe.

The work requires expertise in Python (and adaptation of Fortran 90) and familiarity with the CAMB/CLASS and Cosmomc/Cobaya softwares.

This project will be funded by Cardiff University.
Applicants should apply to the Doctor of Philosophy in Physics and Astronomy with a start date of 1st October 2020.

In the research proposal section of your application, please specify the project title and supervisors of this project. If you are applying for more than one project, please list the individual titles of the projects in the text box provided. In the funding section, please select ’I will be applying for a scholarship/grant’ and specify that you are applying for advertised funding from Cardiff University.

Applicants will need to submit the following documents with their application:
- post high school certificates and transcripts to date
- academic CV
- personal statement
- two academic references. Your references can either be uploaded with your application, or emailed by the referee to or

Funding Notes

Tuition fee support: Full UK/EU tuition fees
Maintenance stipend: Doctoral stipend matching UK Research Council National Minimum

You should have obtained, or be about to obtain a First or Upper Second Class UK Honours degree in Physics , or a related subject, Alternatively, applicants with equivalent qualifications gained outside the UK will also be considered. Applicants with a Lower Second Class degree will be considered if they also have a Master’s degree.
Applicants whose first language is not English are normally expected to meet the minimum University requirements (e.g. 6.5 IELTS)

Related Subjects

How good is research at Cardiff University in Physics?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 19.50

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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