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PhD in novel widely tuneable semiconductor lasers for fast optical coherence tomography application


   Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering

  Dr Lalitha Ponnampalam  Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

PhD in novel widely tuneable semiconductor lasers for fast optical coherence tomography application

 

Fully funded PhD studentship to work on widely tunable semiconductor laser for biomedical imaging applications.

Duration of study: Full time - four years.

Start date: October 2022.

Closing date for applications: 30th July 2022 (until filled)

Primary Supervisor: Dr Lalitha Ponnampalam ()

 

Applications are invited for a fully funded PhD studentship to work within the Photonics Group on novel photonic integrated solutions for high speed optical coherence tomography (OCT) system. The work will concentrate mainly on the design and development of fast, widely tuneable lasers, suitable for swept-source OCT systems.

Funding: The studentship covers Home tuition fees and an annual stipend of £18,062 (2022-2023) (to be confirmed), increasing annually with inflation. Additional support will cover consumables, books, professional memberships and travel to workshops and conferences.

Background: 

We are looking for academically outstanding PhD students with an interest in developing novel, fast and widely tunable semiconductor lasers for the next generation photonic integrated optical coherent tomography system. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive cross-sectional imaging technique in real-time at micrometer-scale resolution based on low-coherence interferometry, and has evolved as one of the most important imaging techniques in ophthalmology, cardiology, oncology, dermatology and gastroenterology. The commercial OCT systems today are based on bulk optics, and due to their high cost and large size, their use in medicine and other application areas is very limited. Fully integrated OCT system proposed in this project will be a key enabler for the development of low-cost hand-held systems which could find wider use.

This project will be within the framework of EPSRC QUDOS Programme Grant within which UCL is collaborating with Universities of Cambridge, Cardiff and Southampton to establish a monolithic integrated platform based on III-V semiconductor active structures on silicon, combining the advantages of III-V and silicon photonics in a single platform, enabling manufacturing at low cost. The project is based on the successful demonstration of high-performance semiconductor laser growth on silicon, a work pioneered at UCL, and is now working towards developing a more comprehensive set of photonic functionalities on this platform, including lasers, amplifiers, modulators, detectors and waveguide couplers that will be key to the realization of cost-effective, high-performance OCT system.  

The project will involve learning and designing photonic and electronic integrated circuits that will be fabricated externally, while the characterization and system demonstration will be done at UCL. The student is expected to publish their research in leading journals and conferences.

Qualifications required: The successful applicants will be part of the Photonics Group, Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering. Applicants should have a degree in Physics or electronic and electrical engineering with a minimum of a 2:1 with a clear aptitude and enthusiasm for research. Successful candidates will have some experience on experimental work in either photonics, physics or electronics; theoretical modelling; and scientific computer programming (e.g. MATLAB, Python, C++).

Industry Engagement: The project will be linked to the EPSRC QUDOS programme, which has extensive support from leading industries. In particular, the engagement with photonic software suppliers and design houses such as Photon Design and Bright Photonics, and the internationally recognised OCT manufacturers such as Michelson Diagnostics, Gooch and Housego and Santec, will have an added value to this PhD Programme. 

Additional information: The student will typically work closely with a diverse team of PhD students and researchers within the group. The Photonics Group has a long history in graduating high quality, very successful PhD graduates. A large number have won a series of prizes and awards for their research and are now working in leading academic and industrial research laboratories around the world.

How to apply: To make informal inquiries, please send a CV including a list of publications and a cover letter to Dr Lalitha Ponnampalam () who will be happy to answer any queries about the project.

Applications must be made using the UCL online application system. Please clearly mark your application as ‘Photonics Group : Dr L Ponnampalam’. 

For information on the PhD programme within the department, please contact the .

UCL is committed to equality and values diversity.


Funding Notes

Funding: The studentship covers Home tuition fees and an annual stipend of £18,062 (2022-2023) (to be confirmed), increasing annually with inflation. Additional support will cover consumables, books, professional memberships and travel to workshops and conferences
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