The Department of Physics and Astronomy at UCL has one of the broadest bases for research in Physics of any UK university. A UCL Physics PhD provides evidence of the type of problem-solving skills which are an ideal qualification for a further career in research or the wider job market.
- Research Groups
The Physics Department is composed of 5 research groups. Details of currently available studentships are available from the research groups web pages, on the Doctoral Training Centre web pages or on UCL job opportunities.
Research Group Admissions Tutor Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Positron Physics Prof Marzena Szymanska email@example.com Astrophysics Prof Sergey Yurchenko firstname.lastname@example.org Biological Physics Prof Thanh Nguyen email@example.com Condensed Matter and Materials Physics and Biological Physics Dr Mark Buitelaar firstname.lastname@example.org High Energy Particle Physics
Dr Emily Nurse
From November 2021
Each of these research groups has its own admissions tutor - see names above. You should contact at least one of these admissions tutors, using the email addresses given above. You should also follow the application procedure procedure for the relevant group by following the links above.
If you are interested in doing a PhD in the nanotechnology area, you will find it useful to look at the website of the London Centre for Nanotechnology, which carries out cross-disciplinary research in the areas of physics, materials, chemistry, engineering and biomedicine.
The Mullard Space Science Laboratory also offers PhD opportunities in space science, further details of these can be found at https://www.ucl.ac.uk/mssl/study/phd-opportunities
- Application Procedure
- Go to the graduate application webpage to fill out an application. Be sure that you read all of the information before you fill out your application.
- Click the blue 'Apply now' button near the bottom of the page.
- After reading apply on-line checklist, click the blue 'Submit' button on the bottom. Enter the on-line application website.
- Choose department as Physics & Astronomy, and programme group as postgraduate research. The study type and start year should be chosen according to your circumstances. Click 'search now' and select the one you want to apply.
- Create a new application account by clicking the button 'New user' on the right-hand side of the page.
- Follow the instructions on the webpage and finish the on-line application form. Note that you will need to upload an electronic copy of your academic transcriptand a personal statement.
- For PhD applications to the HEP groupplease follow the additional instructions outlined here : http://www.hep.ucl.ac.uk/postgrad/apply_now.shtml
For general enquiries about the Physics and Astronomy PhD program, please
email our Postgraduate Administrator, Nadia Waller.
- Doctoral Training Centres
DIS encompasses a wide range of areas in the field of 'big-data' including the collection, storage and analysis of large datasets, as well as the use of complex models, algorithms and machine learning techniques to interpret the data. The Centre will primarily carry out research in STFC's flagship Data Intensive Science projects, in High Energy Physics and Astronomy, which have been at the forefront of DIS research for several decades and provide the ideal training ground for DIS.
UCL has a large number of students funded through Doctoral Training Programmes (DTPs) and Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs).
These multi-disciplinary centres bring together various areas of expertise and offer unique opportunities and a dynamic environment for PhD student training.
Programmes are usually funded for four years. These positions are usually only open to applicants resident in the UK for at least three years prior to their application. Requirements do vary, so please check individual centres. The first year typically includes taught elements for developing research and transferable skills as well as a research element to explore potential PhD-level topics.
Funding Each group has a specific application procedure and possible sources of funding so for more more detailed information see the individual group pages via the links to the Research Groups above.
- For Astrophysics (Astro) and High Energy Physics (HEP) the main source of funding is from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).
- For Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Positron Physics studenship (AMOPP) and Condensed Matter and Material Physics (CMMP) it is from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Collaborative Training Account (CTA) awards with an external partner are also available.
Are eligible for a research council award which covers tuition fees and maintenance. For information about tuition fees see: www.ucl.ac.uk/current-students/money
- If you completed your degree at a UK university you are eligible for the same research council award.
- EU citizens who did not undertake their degree at a UK university are eligible for a tuition fees-only award, and must find maintenance money from another source.
- UCL has a limited number (around 25) graduate scholarships which will cover both fees and a maintenance award.
Overseas (not EU)
- Students are not eligible for any Research Council awards and must find independent funding to cover tuition fees and maintenance. See: www.ucl.ac.uk/current-students/money
Other sources of funding for Overseas students:
- UCL Graduate School Research Scholarships (GSRS) provides limited funding for non-UK citizens or EU citizens who did not graduate from a UK institute are. They cover both fees and cost of living.
- Students can also apply for an Overseas Research Scholarship ORS award.
- Details of each, along with other possibilities can be found at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships
- Knowledge Transfer
Research-intensive University departments, of which UCL Physics and Astronomy is one, are constantly on the look-out for applications of their existing expertise and for new and challenging problems. Knowledge Transfer is the umbrella under which we disseminate our research, in ways which encompass standard routes in the scientific community such as publications and conferences, as well as consultancy work and large-scale collaborative programs with industry. We aim to develop lasting partnerships with industry, business, government and the public sector. Practical applications of our research can contribute to the economic competitiveness of the UK, to the effectiveness of public services and policy, and to the quality of the environment. Examples include:
- EPSRC Industrial CASE PhD Studentship with BOC: Ammonia as a Solvent for Nanotechnology (Neal Skipper)
- NERC Industrial CASE PhD Studentship with Schlumberger Cambridge Research: Asphaltene aggregation in the presence of clay surfaces (Neal Skipper)
- EPSRC EngD Studentship with CCLRC: Nanostructuring of hydrogen storage materials (Neal Skipper)
- Industrial CASE studentship with CDT (Cambridge Display Technology) 2001-2004 (Student: Vladimir Bodrozic) (Franco Cacialli)
- EPSRC Industrial CASE PhD Studentship with UKAEA (Culham): Including electronic effects in radiation damage simulations of fusion materials (Dorothy Duffy)
- EPSRC EngD Studentship with Sematech (USA): Modelling of the atomic processes in gate oxides responsible for breakdown in CMOS devices (Alexander Shluger)