The Sheffield ATLAS group is world leading in understanding the effects of radiation on silicon detector technologies. The radiation environments found in modern high energy collider experiments would seriously impact the physics discovery potential if not properly taken into account. The group at Sheffield plays a key role in the design and operation of radiation resilient detector systems for the ATLAS experiment at CERN and its upgrades.
The proposed PhD is to research the underlying mechanisms of radiation damage in silicon devices. Predictive models at the atomic level will be developed and tested at international radiation test facilities, and further validated using radiation data from the LHC experiments. The interplay between point-like atomic displacement defects versus cluster defect formation will be studied to determine their role in degrading the electrical and optical properties of semiconductor materials. Molecular dynamic simulations will be performed to better understand how clusters of defects change the crystal properties of semiconductor materials. A major aim in the project is a fundamental understanding of the differences observed between proton, neutron and gamma radiation and advancing the literature in this field. Alternative semiconductor materials with promising radiation resilient properties such as GaAs, GaN will also be researched. Collaboration with developers of the powerful Monte Carlo simulation codes FLUKA and GEANT4 will allow improved modelling of radiation damage effects in those codes. This work will benefit all the industries where radiation is a concern. Previous students and post-doctoral researchers have used their simulation expertise and radiation knowledge to find careers in accelerator, space and nuclear industries.
Science Graduate School: As a PhD student in one of the science departments at the University of Sheffield, you’ll be part of the Science Graduate School – a community of postgraduate researchers working across biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and psychology. You’ll get access to training opportunities designed to support your career development by helping you gain professional skills that are essential in all areas of science. You’ll be able to learn how to recognise good research and research behaviour, improve your communication abilities and experience technologies that are used in academia, industry and many related careers. Visit http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/sgs to learn more
This project could potentially have STFC funding attached for an impressive candidate.