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Finite-speed Thouless pump

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, January 31, 2020
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

A recent area of significant progress in physics has been that of periodically-driven, many-body quantum systems, in which a number of phenomena which cannot be captured by the usual statistical mechanical framework have been predicted and observed. One fascinating phenomenon is a so-called Thouless pump, where an adiabatically slow periodic modulation of a system produces a quantised current. This is related to the existence of a topological invariant. For realistic, non-adiabatic (that is, finite-speed) modulation, exact quantization does not occur as the system becomes excited (in practice, its entropy increases and it heats up).

The aim of this project is to study the effect of the inevitable interaction with the external environment on this system, in particular, whether and how cooling the system down reinstates the precise quantization of the current. The initial stages of the project will involve non-interacting systems, amenable to analytical study, and once this limit is understood, interactions and more realistic environments will be introduced. These will be studied with numerical techniques, so basic familiarity with numerical computation will be an advantage.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in physics or a related subject.

A relevant Master's degree and / or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: Degree in Physics or a related subject, experience with numerical calculations.

All students must also meet the minimum English Language requirements:

How to apply

All applications are made online, please select the school/department name under the programme name section and include the quote reference number: MA/AL-Un1/2019

Funding Notes

This is an open call for candidates who are sponsored or who have their own funding. If you do not have funding, you may still apply, however Institutional funding is not guaranteed. Outstanding candidates (UK/EU/International) without funding will be considered for funding opportunities which may become available in the School.

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