University of Leeds Featured PhD Programmes
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre Featured PhD Programmes

Energy Harvesting for Autonomous Systems

Cardiff School of Physics and Astronomy

About the Project

The Internet of Things (IoT) is an exciting global megatrend and UK government priority area, which if to be realised, requires the development of a number of key enabling technologies with potentially huge scientific and market value. As part of the Future Compound Semiconductor Manufacturing Hub (CS Hub) we are working with academic and industrial partners to enable development of interconnected systems for the IoT. A key part of the vision of the IoT is the large number of autonomous sensors relaying information back through the web. To be truly autonomous a sensor must be able to derive energy from the environment to perform the sensing action and to relay the information back to the connected system.
This project will focus on the mechanisms by which communications based on light emission by LEDs or lasers can be powered by energy harvested from the environment. The student will develop understanding of compound semiconductor heterostructure devices and the absorption and emission of radiation, the change and exchange of energy and entropy in such a system, design a laser or LED powered by the heat and light available in the environment, fabricating such a device and demonstrating communication of information at some level.
The project will follow a flexible timeline with completion feasible within 4 years including 0.5 year contingency. The first year will include a literature study and the development of suitable experimental and computational skills. The remainder of the PhD will include device development, device demonstrations and assessment and completion of the thesis. The student will integrate fully with the CS Hub research team comprising post-doctoral research associates, technicians and senior staff at Cardiff University, and make use of Institute for Compound Semiconductors (ICS) facilities.
Candidates should have a strong background and interest in Optics/Photonics, Thermal Physics and Semiconductor Physics

Start date: January 2021. 4 years Full Time.

How to Apply:

Applicants should submit an application for postgraduate study via the Cardiff University webpages ( including:

• an upload of your CV
• a personal statement/covering letter
• two references
• Current academic transcripts

Applicants should select Doctor of Philosophy, with a start date of January 2021

In the research proposal section of your application, please specify the project title and supervisors of this project and copy the project description in the text box provided. In the funding section, please select the ’self -funding’ option.

Candidates should hold a good bachelor’s degree (first or upper second-class honours degree) or a MSc degree in Physics or a related subject.

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in the English language (IELTS 6.5 or equivalent).

Funding Notes

Self-Funded PhD Students Only

This PhD position is opening for self-funded student only, which means the candidate with own funding to cover the living cost and tuition fees will be considered.


1. S. Chen, W. Li, J. Wu, Q. Jiang, M. Tang, S. Shutts, S.N. Elliott, A. Sobiesierski, A. Seeds, I. Ross, P.M. Smowton, H. Liu. “Electrically pumped continuous-wave III–V quantum dot lasers on silicon.” Nature Photonics 10, pp. 307-311. (2016) (10.1038/nphoton.2016.21). Impact Factor 38.
2. H. Baig, Siviter J, Li W, Paul MC, Montecucco A, Rolley M, Sweet TKN, Gao M, Mullen PA, Fernandez EF, Han G, Gregory DH, Knox AR, Mallick T. “Conceptual design and performance evaluation of a hybrid concentrating photovoltaic system in preparation for energy.” Energy 147, pp. 547-560 (2018) (10.1016/ Impact Factor 5.582.

Email Now

Insert previous message below for editing? 
You haven’t included a message. Providing a specific message means universities will take your enquiry more seriously and helps them provide the information you need.
Why not add a message here

The information you submit to Cardiff University will only be used by them or their data partners to deal with your enquiry, according to their privacy notice. For more information on how we use and store your data, please read our privacy statement.

* required field

Your enquiry has been emailed successfully

Search Suggestions

Search Suggestions

Based on your current searches we recommend the following search filters.

FindAPhD. Copyright 2005-2020
All rights reserved.