You will undertake your research at the Cockcroft Institute, Daresbury and will be registered as a PhD student at Lancaster University. The Cockcroft Institute is a collaboration of Universities including Lancaster with the STFC accelerator division ASTeC developing world leading particle accelerator research.
The project is part of cutting-edge research into novel particle accelerators at the Cockcroft Institute which is targeting the development of high-gradient, high frequency acceleration driven by lasers. In particular, this project will focus on photonic dielectric structures which hold the promise to reduce the size of accelerators to the µm-scale. A wealth of concepts from optical communication can be explored to conceive laser-driven dielectric structures with 1 GV/m gradient, 1-5 GV/m breakdown threshold, improved dispersion control, low radiation losses, and damping of unwanted high order modes.
The main objective is the design/build of all-dielectric photonic waveguide operating in the mid infrared range of the spectrum (5-10 µm wavelengths) for efficient acceleration of electrons. You will design and compare suitable photonic structures which will need to be driven by high power lasers. The project will include fabrication and experimental characterisation of the most promising designs where mode profile and coupling efficiency will be measured. The studentship offers a unique opportunity to develop expertise in advanced electromagnetic problems, 3D numerical simulations, experimental characterisation of optical waveguides, and particle accelerators.
You will be based at the Cockcroft Institute and will be co-supervised by Dr. Rosa Letizia, Lancaster University (expertise in the modelling of photonic waveguides) and Dr. S. P. Jamison, ASTeC (laser resources and expertise in accelerator physics/technical systems).
The studentship will start in autumn 2016 and will last 3.5 years.