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PhD in Physics: Superconducting Devices based on Arrays of Josephson Junctions

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  • Full or part time
    Dr B Chesca
    Prof S Saveliev
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Superconducting electronics has been identified as an excellent candidate for the future of electronic devices. Superconducting devices have several advantages over semiconducting ones like, high switching speed, low power dissipation, low noise and enhanced sensitivity. However, despite these advantages, superconducting electronics became established only in niche applications. One reason for this is that such devices have to be cooled to very low temperatures of 4.2 K which is both expensive and impractical. One significant exception is Superconducting Quantum Interference Devices (SQUIDs). Indeed SQUIDs as the most sensitive magnetometers are being routinely used in many areas, among them: medicine, scientific research in material science or fundamental physics, geology, etc. At present due to their superior noise performances in the vast majority of applications, magnetometers made of low temperature superconductor SQUIDs operating at 4.2K are being used. This is despite several significant advantages high temperature superconductor SQUIDs operating at 77K offer: low cost and user friendly cooling procedures and potential superiority as magnetic imaging devices.

Recent reports by our group [1-3] in the area of highly sensitive superconducting devices based on Josephson junction arrays and operated at 77K re-ignited the hope that superconducting electronics operated at such relatively high and user-friendly temperatures can finally flourish and provide improved system performances in many more applications.

The present PhD proposal is part of a wider project that includes our long term collaboration with Nottingham University, as well as our recent links with a leading industrial partner such as Star Cryoelectronics in the US. Within this PhD we aim to implement a similar technology [1-3] but different purpose-build advanced architectures of arrays of Josephson junctions operating coherently for the development of superconducting devices such as: magnetic sensors, amplifiers, GHz generators/detectors. The PhD project focuses mostly on modelling (using already developed numerical simulations software) and design. However, prototype fabrication and/or testing are also possible in collaboration with our partners. Short term visits to the R&D units of Star Cryoelectronics in the US are planned within this PhD.

To apply, please complete the online application using the following link: Under programme name please select Physics (Full time). Please quote the following reference when applying: GSEA2015SCI – BC/SS

Funding Notes

Loughborough University are seeking an excellent candidate to commence a full-time PhD in April 2016. The studentship is open to those eligible to pay UK/EU fees, and provides a tax-free stipend of £14,057 per annum, plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate for up to three years.
Applicants should have a 2:1 Honours degree or better, or equivalent, in Physics, Mathematics, or Engineering.
The closing date for applications is midnight, 15 February 2016. Interviews will be held between 15 February -15 March, 2016.


[1] Chesca, B, John, D, Mellor, C (2015), Applied Physics Letters, Vol. 107, page 162602.
[2] Chesca, B, John, D, Mellor, C (2014), Supercond. Sci. Technology, Vol. 27, page 085015.
[3] Chesca, B, et al, (2013), Applied Physics Letters, Vol. 103, page 092601.

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