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Optical transition radiation diagnostics for low energy ion beams


   Department of Physics

  , Dr Rahul Singh  Monday, January 31, 2022  Awaiting Funding Decision/Possible External Funding

Liverpool United Kingdom Computational Mathematics Electrical Engineering Electromagnetism Nuclear Physics Particle Physics Theoretical Physics

About the Project

This project provides excellent opportunities for cutting edge research into beam diagnostics. The project will be based at world-class institutions in the UK and Germany and you will be given opportunities to spend significant time in both countries.

Transverse beam profiling is a basic diagnostic for accelerator operation and optimization. There are a number of established methods based on secondary electron monitor (SEM) grids as well as beam induced fluorescence (BIF) exist for this measurement. However, with increasing beam intensity and more advanced beam dynamics concepts in high intensity linacs, the suitability of these methods is under question. Fundamentally, they are limited as they provide only 2-dimensional projections of a beam. In addition, the resolution of the measured profiles have limitations due to space charge effects or technological limitations.

In this PhD project you will explore optical transition radiation as a replacement for traditional methods. Specifically, you will build a theoretical model and understanding of optical transition radiation from un-processed metal targets. Unprocessed targets are “rough surfaces” with respect to optical wavelengths. You will then carry out experiments at the X2 beamline at GSI’s UNILAC accelerator and the K-130 cyclotron at the University of Jyväskalä to verify your models. This will allow identifying the relative contribution of OTR photons with respect to other photon inducing processes such as beam-induced fluorescence in the given energy regime. In a next step, you will compare the transverse profiles obtained using OTR with more traditional diagnostics. Studies into different target materials and surface structures to mitigate e.g. heating effects will complement this work.

Subject to funding approval, this project will be carried out over 48 months. You will spend years 1 and 4 in the UK where you will benefit from the Cockcroft Institute’s comprehensive postgraduate training program. You will be based at GSI/FAIR in Germany during years 2 and 3 where the focus will be on experimental studies. Whilst in the UK, a standard UKRI PhD stipend will be paid, during the time at GSI, the usual local PhD student support will be paid.

For any enquiries please contact Prof Carsten P Welsch on: 

To apply for this opportunity, please visit: https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/study/postgraduate-research/how-to-apply/ and click on the 'Ready to apply? Apply now' button.  Please ensure you quote the following reference on your application: PPPR018 - Optical transition radiation diagnostics for low energy ion beams.


Funding Notes

The studentship will cover the UK/EU fees; a tax-free maintenance allowance will be paid during the first and final year, when the student is based in the UK. PhD student support at standard German level will be paid during the time at GSI/FAIR.

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