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Millimetre-wave metasurface waveguides for high capacity wireless networking technology

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

The frequency range between 30 GHz and 300 GHz is being considered by all wireless communication stakeholders as the way to realise very high capacity 5G mobile communications in the indoor environment. This frequency range, known as millimetre-wave, offers more bandwidth to deliver faster, higher-quality video and multimedia content and services. However, it is likely that this frequency range will require room-wide coverage (vs. current premises-wide coverage) and network the different rooms using cables/optical fibres. This wiring can be pricey and disruptive, especially for residential premises. With this scenario in mind, the PhD research programme will develop a whole technology (transmission lines, couplers, bends, junctions…) based on flexible metasurface waveguides. Metasurfaces are artificial sheets with sub-wavelength thickness and structure enabling electromagnetic properties on demand. They have been championed in part by the Metamaterials Research Centre at University of Birmingham.

The PhD student will primarily (i) design the different components using analytical models and full-wave simulations; (ii) liaise with fabrication partners; (iii) carry out measurements using an all fibre-coupled Terahertz time-domain spectrometer and PNA network analysers to characterise the performance of the different components; and (iv) carry out system performance analyses. Other activities supporting the study will also be carried out when required.

We expect the PhD candidate to develop the expertise required to lead an experimental research project, to train students, to interact with colleagues with different backgrounds (physics and engineering) and from different disciplines (i.e., electromagnetism, radio-propagation, material science). Details of the project will be agreed with the interested candidates to tailor the research to his/her interests.

The research programme will take place in an international and interdisciplinary environment, which will substantially favour collaboration opportunities 1) within the School of Physics and Astronomy [Dr M. Navarro-Cía, primary supervisor; Prof S. Zhang; etc.], 2) within the School of Engineering [Prof C. Constantinou, Secondary supervisor], and 3) within other research institutions.

Funding Notes

Applications are sought from highly motivated students graduating with first degree (2:1 or higher) in physics or engineering (and preferably a Master degree). Funding is awarded on a competitive basis. The funding is only available to UK/EU nationals, and it will cover tuition fees and provide a stipend for 3.5 years.

Non-EU Students: If you have the correct qualifications and access to your own funding, either from your home country or your own finances, your application to work on this project will be considered.

For details of the funding available and advice on making your application, please contact:

How good is research at University of Birmingham in Physics?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 39.00

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

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