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Gravitational-wave astronomy: new approaches to understanding compact binary mergers

   Department of Physics

  Dr Gregory Ashton  Applications accepted all year round  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

In 2015, the kilometre-scale LIGO laser interferometers observed tiny ripples in spacetime called gravitational waves from the collision of two black holes. This detection won the 2017 Nobel prize and opened a new way to study the Universe: gravitational-wave astronomy. Over the next five years, an international network of gravitational-wave detectors will continue to explore the Universe. Improvements in the detectors will enable them to reach further back in cosmic time increasing the rate of detections. They will see black hole collisions nearly every day and several collisions between neutron stars, ultra-dense stars supported only by quantum-degeneracy pressure. 

Royal Holloway’s LIGO group plays a leading role in the cutting-edge data analysis used to study gravitational-wave signals. We invite applicants to apply for a competitively funded position in our group. The successful applicant will undertake a project in of three key areas: the development of novel tests of General Relativity, new applications of Machine Learning algorithms to population modelling, or the study of non-Gaussian transient noise artefacts that plague advanced era detectors. In addition, they will be given the opportunity to join the LIGO Collaboration and participate in the O4 and O5 observing runs scheduled to take place between 2023 and 2027.  

We welcome applications from all qualified applicants, including international applicants. But, applications are particularly encouraged from traditionally under-represented groups in science. The Department of Physics at Royal Holloway holds an Athena SWAN silver award and the University is an Institute of Physics Project Juno Champion; the award demonstrate action has been taken to address gender equality at all levels and to foster a more inclusive working environment. 

We encourage applicants to submit their applications before Tuesday 31 January 2023 or Friday 6 January 2023 if applicants are eligible and would like to apply to the Bell-Burnell Graduate Scholarship Fund. 

To learn more about the position, you are welcome to contact .

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