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Record Superconductivity in Hydrogen Compounds

   School of Physics

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  Dr Sven Friedemann  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

The project:

Understanding high-temperature superconductivity in hydride compounds is of great importance to fundamental research and may lead to new applications. Superconductivity marks the phenomenon of zero resistance from a macroscopic quantum state of matter. The zero-resistance state allows loss-less power transmission and generation of high magnetic fields in MRI scanners for medical imaging and in pilot nuclear fusion reactors for confinement of plasma. The quantum nature of the superconducting state is studied in fundamental research and exploited for quantum computing, e.g. in Google’s quantum computer.

Superconductivity up to room temperature has recently been discovered in hydrogen compounds at very high pressures above 1 megabar. This project aims to unravel the mechanism of high-temperature superconductivity in these record materials. The results will help in the search for new superconductors with higher transition temperature and at lower pressures.

You will measure the key properties of the high-temperature superconductivity in hydride compounds using electrical, magnetic, and spectroscopic measurements. You will tune the composition of known hydride superconductors to optimize the transition temperature and search for new hydride superconductors. Hence, the project offers the prospect to find new superconductors with higher transition temperatures.

You will conduct experiments at the University of Bristol and at international facilities like the European High Magnetic Field laboratory and the Diamond Light Source synchrotron. You will learn high-pressure methods including use of the diamond-anvil pressure cell as well as transport, magnetic, and spectroscopic methods. You will be part of a very active group with many related projects on high-temperature superconductivity in different materials and many friendly and motivated PhDs, postdocs, and research staff.

Please contact Assoc. Prof. Sven Friedemann([Email Address Removed]) or visit for more details.

Candidate requirements: 

Candidates should have completed an undergraduate degree (minimum 2(i) honours or equivalent) in Physics, A good background in solid state physics including superconductivity is desirable but not essential. Experience in experimental physics is beneficial. 

Funding: This studentship is fully funded under the EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership. Funding will cover tuition fees at the UK student level and an annual stipend for up to three and half years at the standard UKRI stipend rate (currently £15,609 per annum for 2021/22).

We also welcome applications from outstanding international students. We are able to offer a very small number of fully-funded places to such students but also accept students who can provide full or partial funding from other sources. If you need an offer letter to apply for a competitive scholarship, please get in contact with us well before any deadlines.

This position is open for PhD scholarships for Chinese students under the CSC scheme.

How to apply:

Please make an online application for this project at Please select ‘Physics (PhD)’ on the Programme Choice page. You will be prompted to enter details of the studentship in the Funding and Research Details sections of the form. Please make sure you include the title of studentship and the contact supervisor in your Personal Statement.

How good is research at University of Bristol in Physics?

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

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