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Exploring the Relativistic Transient Universe with Gravitational Waves (gravity)

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  • Full or part time
    Prof Sutton
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

The detection of gravitational waves (GWs) by LIGO has opened a new channel for studying the most extreme phenomena and environments found in nature, including gamma-ray bursts, core-collapse supernovae, and black-hole mergers. The inner engines of these systems are either obscured or inherently invisible to electromagnetic observations. Furthermore, the associated gravitational-wave emission typically depends on poorly understood physics, such as the equation-of-state of matter at supra-nuclear densities. Gravitational waves will therefore provide an exciting new probe of these astrophysical systems, for example constraining the neutron star equation-of-state, and providing laboratories for tests of fundamental physics and cosmology. However, realising the potential of gravitational waves poses a significant challenge: state-of-the-art techniques for detecting and interpreting gravitational waves require precise theoretical models of the gravitational-wave emission, and hence are not applicable to most gravitational-wave sources. This project aims at maximising the scientific exploitation of gravitational waves through advancements beyond current state-of-the-art in rapid automated analyses, advanced signal/background discrimination, and waveform reconstruction. The goals of this project are: (i) to develop the model-independent techniques needed to robustly detect gravitational waves from relativistic transient events, and determine the signal structure; (ii) to apply these to data from the Advanced LIGO / Advanced Virgo network to detect GWs; and (iii) to use detected GWs as probes of relativistic systems and fundamental physics.

Funding Notes

The Science Technology Facilities Council welcomes applications from both UK and EU applicants.
Full awards (tuition fees plus maintenance stipend) are open to UK Nationals and EU students who can satisfy UK residency requirements. For more information visit: http://www.stfc.ac.uk/funding/studentships/studentship-terms-conditions-guidance/student-eligibility-requirements/
The research project listed above is in competition with other projects for 2017/18; studentships will be awarded to the highest ranked applicants from all applications received. We reserve the right to close applications early should sufficient applications be received.

Related Subjects

How good is research at Cardiff University in Physics?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 19.50

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

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