University College London Featured PhD Programmes
University of Edinburgh Featured PhD Programmes
Norwich Research Park Featured PhD Programmes
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Featured PhD Programmes
Life Science Zurich Graduate School Featured PhD Programmes

Investigations of atmospheric gravity waves with SuperDARN (CENTA2-PHYS4-MILA)

Project Description

The upper atmosphere of the earth is a complex, vertically coupled system. The uppermost layers of the atmosphere, including the mesosphere, thermosphere, ionosphere and the overlying magnetosphere play an important role in the coupling of energy and momentum to and from the lower atmospheric layers of the stratosphere and troposphere. Understanding this vertical coupling is a vital component of our efforts to understand and predict the climate system, and to distinguish properly between anthropogenic and solar driven changes in climate. Atmospheric gravity waves (AGWs) are a key phenomenon in mediating the transfer of energy and momentum between the upper and lower layers of the atmosphere.

The parameterisation of the momentum flux in AGWs, and its dependence on solar activity is a major source of uncertainty in the current suite of global atmospheric circulation models. Here we will produce a long-term, near-global evaluation of AGW amplitude, occurrence and propagation for ingestion into new generations of such global models, improving our knowledge of the whole coupled atmosphere system as a step towards improving our understanding of the influence of near-Earth “space weather” on our climate.

We will exploit a variety of techniques to characterise the flux of AGWs over a long time period, to reveal seasonal, local time and solar cycle effects, and over an extensive latitude range, through the exploitation of ground backscatter from both the poleward pointing radar main beam, and through the equatorward pointing rear lobe. The data gathered will include new data from the recently-constructed NERC European low latitude SuperDARN radar constructed at Leicester University and the British Antarctic Survey radar systems in the Southern hemisphere, as well as radars from international collaborators.

Entry Requirements:

UK Bachelor Degree with at least 2:1 in a relevant subject or overseas equivalent.

Available for UK and EU applicants only.

Applicants must meet requirements for both academic qualifications and residential eligibility:

How to Apply:

Please follow refer to the How to Apply section at and use the Physics Apply button to submit your PhD application.

Upload your CENTA Studentship Form in the proposal section of the application form.

In the funding section of the application please indicate you wish to be considered for NERC CENTA Studentship.

Under the proposal section please provide the name of the supervisor and project title/project code you want to apply for.

Funding Notes

This project is one of a number of fully funded studentships available to the best UK and EU candidates available as part of the NERC DTP CENTA consortium.

For more details of the CENTA consortium please see the CENTA website: View Website.

Applicants must meet requirements for both academic qualifications and residential eligibility: View Website

The studentship includes a 3.5 year tuition fee waiver at UK/EU rates

An annual tax free stipend (For 2019/20 this is currently £15,009)

Research Training Support Grant (RTSG) of £8,000.


Burrell, A. G., S. E. Milan, G. W. Perry, T. K. Yeoman, and M. Lester (2015), Automatically determining the origin direction and propagation mode of high-frequency radar backscatter, Radio Sci., 50, doi:10.1002/2015RS005808.

Grocott, A., K. Hosokawa, T. Ishida, M. Lester, S. E. Milan, M. P. Freeman, N. Sato, and A. S. Yukimatu (2013), Characteristics of medium-scale traveling ionospheric disturbances observed near the Antarctic Peninsula by HF radar J. Geophys. Res. Space Physics, 118, 5830–5841, doi:10.1002/jgra.50515.

Related Subjects

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
* required field
Send a copy to me for my own records.

Your enquiry has been emailed successfully

FindAPhD. Copyright 2005-2019
All rights reserved.