Category Archives: postgraduate

25Apr/17

New On-line Learning Modules produced by GRADnet PGRs

Two new on-line learning modules have been created by GRADnet PGR students: Shaun Geaney of RHUL and Justyn Campbell-White of the University of Kent. This brings the total number of modules now available to fourteen. These were all created by GRADnet PGRs in response to the phrase “I wish I’d known that when I started my PhD”. The new modules are:

Designed to help new PhD students embarking on their research, the presentation style of the courses is very varied. Clean code is about creating organised, readable and terse programming code and  is delivered as an online presentation. The Virtual Observatory Tools is a video which will show you how to use the Virtual Observatory (VO) tools: Aladin, Simbad, Vizier, and Topcat.

The creators of these and the other modules received prizes. If any PGRs across SEPnet have any ideas for additional training modules, please contact gradnetadmin@sepnet.ac.uk

Note: you will need to sign on to the GRADnet VRE to access these modules. If you are having problems logging on you can find help here.

28Feb/17

GRADnet Quantum Technologies School 24-26 April 2017

Who:  This school is for physics PhD and post-doctoral researchers working in the area of quantum technologies.

When: 24-26 April 2017 (Arrival 11.30)

Where:  Old Thorns Manor Hotel, Liphook, Hampshire, GU30 7PE.  Free to attend. Accommodation is provided at the Old Thorns and rooms are en suite twin-bedded rooms (2 people sharing).   Travel expenses to and from the venue can be claimed through SEPnet.  A shuttle taxi service will be provided from Liphook station to Old Thorns on Monday morning and Wednesday evening.

Registration:

PGRs and Postdocs from the SEPnet institutions should register via the VRE here.  Registration deadline 20 March 2017.

If you are a from a non-SEPnet institution you can register your interest to gradnetadmin@sepnet.ac.uk

What:  A 3-day residential workshop led by senior researchers in the SEPnet region comprising lectures, tutorials, seminars and other activities. This school aims to expose PhD students interested in applications of physics which directly rely on the properties of quantum mechanics to perform a function beyond current technological capability.

Sometimes such a device is described as a “machine” whose dynamical degrees of freedom obey Schrodinger’s equations, thereby employing the principles of superposition and entanglement to achieve its task.

The School will be taught by senior researchers from within SEPnet and by invited speakers from beyond. A total of six sessions are planned that will span different directions in which quantum technology is progressing, including:

  • Quantum computation
  • Quantum simulation
  • Quantum sensing / metrology
  • Quantum communications.

In addition, the School will explore key enabling technologies.

Speakers: Erika Andersson, Heriot-Watt University, Sugato Bose, University College London, Andreas Freise, University of Birmingham,Eran Ginossar, University of Surrey, Jaewoo Joo, University of Surrey, Richard Josza, University of Cambridge, Pieter Kok, University of Sheffield, Stefan Kuhr, University of Strathclyde, Tobias Lindstrom, NPL, John Morton, University College London, Yuri Ovchinnikov, NPL, Diego Porras, University of Sussex, Alessandro Rossi, University of Cambridge, Tim Spiller, University of York and Seb Weidt, University of Sussex.

Organisers: Dr Eran Ginossar (Surrey), Prof Winfried Hensinger (Sussex), Dr Elinor Irish (Southampton), Dr Silvia Bergamini (Open University), Dr Tobias Lindstrom (National Physical Laboratory).

This workshop contributes 20 hours towards physics skills training.

17Jan/17

GRADnet School: Experimental Methods for Condensed Matter 5-7 March 2017

Experimental Methods for Condensed Matter 5-7 March 2017

Who:  This course is for 1st and 2nd Year Physics postgraduate researchers working in experimental condensed matter physics, and theorists wanting to learn what   experimenters can do!

When: Sunday, 5 March to Tuesday, 7 March 2017.  Arrival 12:30 on Sunday, 5 March.

Where:  Old Thorns Manor Hotel, Liphook, Hampshire, GU30 7PE.  All meals and accommodation have been booked and pre-paid by SEPnet.  Travel expenses to and from the venue can be claimed through SEPnet.  A shuttle taxi service will be provided from Liphook station to Old Thorns on Monday morning and Tuesday evening.

Register here.  Registration deadline 30 January 2017

What:  A 3-day residential workshop that describes the background science, the methodology, the capability and some dos and don’ts of a range of common spectroscopy, microscopy and characterisation techniques.

This residential school has the joint objectives of reinforcing understanding for students already working with some of the methods discussed and showing what other methods might offer. It will include lectures, tutorials, seminars and other activity sessions on:

  • X-ray and neutron scattering
  • Optical spectroscopies.  A discussion of the basics of optical spectroscopy, spectrometers and spectrographs will be followed by examples of their use in characterising materials by photoluminescence, Raman spectroscopy, absorption spectroscopy, etc.
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance. An introduction to how physicists use NMR to measure molecular dynamics and microstructure.
  • Electron and atomic force microscopies and surface analysis techniques. These methods enable the imaging of (i) the topography of materials surfaces, (ii) the microstructure of a material, (iii) the defects, such as dislocations, within a material and (iv) chemical analysis. Two sessions explore how these goals are achieved.

This workshop contributes 16 hours towards physics skills training.

17Oct/16
GRADnet Summer School

‘I Wish I Had Known Earlier’ – GRADnet Student-led Online Learning Proposal Call

Once again GRADnet is offering a scheme in which postgraduate researchers can create online learning modules to share their knowledge and experience with peers in earlier years.  We invite you to participate in this. You will receive a £1,000 bursary for each online module you create. Details of previously created modules are available on the VRE. Log on to http://www.open.ac.uk/students/research/SEPnet/training/student-led-on-line-learning%20modules

Proposals can be to support the development of either technical skills (for example, theoretical methods and tools, or practical physics know-how and skills) or more transferable/genetic skills (for example, Managing your Time, or Presenting at Conferences).  Although we have provided these examples, we expect that you will have a much better idea from your own experience of exactly what you wished you had known when you had started or what you had difficulty getting to grips with. These modules are designed to help those coming behind you avoid the same problems.

You are asked to submit a proposal for an online module, see attached guidelines and form. The proposal should identify the topic, provide an outline of what a module needs to cover and what learning it is intended to deliver. If selected, you will receive mentoring to help you develop a high quality virtual learning package in one of several possible formats (video, website, text etc). This is another skill to add to your portfolio.  Collaborative modules between groups of students are particularly welcomed. This is an excellent opportunity to develop your teaching skills and experience for your CV.

Before you submit your proposal, there will be a chance to discuss your ideas and see what previous students have done on Tuesday, 25 October 2015 at 11:15-12:15 via Skype.  If you wish to participate in this session please email gradnetadmin@sepnet.ac.uk by midday on Friday, 21 October 2016 and I will then send you the SEPnet Skype contact details.

I wish I had known application form and guidance 2016 Final


                            
11Oct/16

SEPnet PhD Scholarships: PhD Grand Challenges 2017

SEPnet PhD Scholarships: PhD Grand Challenges 2017

Take nine world-class University Physics Departments.  Bring together their research, knowledge and resources.  The result is SEPnet.

SEPnet offers PhD programmes focused on the future of physics with scholarships to match.  You will optimise the opportunity to enter your preferred field of research with your single application considered by nine universities: Hertfordshire, Kent, the OU, Portsmouth, Queen Mary, Royal Holloway, Southampton, Surrey and Sussex. Our partners offer over 100 PhD projects every year. These projects and SEPnet Scholarships are available in the following areas of research:

  • Astrophysics
  • Atmospheric and Climate physics
  • Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
  • Medical and Bio- Physics
  • Nuclear Physics:
  • Particle Physics
  • Physics Education
  • Quantum Technology and Condensed Matter
  • Space and Planetary Sciences
  • Theoretical Physics

Scholarships come with additional research training support from SEPnet of up to £500 per year which may be used for travel to conferences or overseas experiments.

The SEPnet Graduate Network (GRADnet)

GRADnet provides an extensive regional training programme for postgraduate researchers including physics training and professional skills development. For more information visit: http://www.sepnet.ac.uk/study/phd-opportunities/

GRADnet runs Graduate Schools for Physics PhD students at employers in the region. This video, produced by our students, gives a flavour of what to expect:

How to Apply:

Applicants are invited to submit their current C.V. and a short statement of their research interests (max. 200 words) to Cristobel Soares-Smith, SEPnet Graduate Network Administrator, gradnetadmin@sepnet.ac.uk by 15 February 2017.  Selected candidates will be invited to attend an Open Day on 22 February 2017 at the Royal Astronomical Society in London in order to meet potential supervisors and learn more about GRADnet.

Closing Date:  15 February 2017

Note that you are also able apply directly to any SEPnet University separately through their standard procedures. If your application is accepted by a particular University after the closing date above, it may not be considered for this GRADnet scholarship award. The SEPnet route should be considered as a distinct path. We will endeavour to make your application available to be considered for all relevant specific awards outside this SEPnet scheme but cannot guarantee that we are aware of all advertised posts from individual supervisors.

We expect awards to be made before the end of April.

03Oct/16

GRADnet Induction 2016 for our new PGRs

GRADnet is pleased to announce the Induction event for Physics PGRs from across SEPnet.

Who:  1st Year Physics PhD students. All SEPnet Departments expect all new students to attend.

When:  26 October 2016, 10:15-16:00

Where:  Park Crescent Conference Centre, 229 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 5PN.

Numbers: This event is strongly recommended by all SEPnet partner Departments.  Circa 100 students are expected to attend. Students are to sign up for two workshops on arrival and attend one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

Register here.  Or with your local GRADnet administrator. Deadline to register is 19 October 2016. Please ensure you have your VRE account activated.

What:  A one day introduction to GRADnet to learn more about opportunities, to meet fellow researchers from across the network and to participate in two from five short workshops designed to get you started in key areas of activity.

  • LaTeX. LaTeX is a document preparation system widely used by physical scientists for the creation of scientific papers, reports and theses, indeed many key journals require paper submission in LaTeX. You will learn to create a simple document covering the key components — title, abstract, sections, tables, equations, figures, and references.
  • MATLAB. Matlab is a high-level technical computing language and interactive environment for algorithm development, data analysis and visualization, and numerical computation.  MATLAB can solve technical computing problems faster and more easily than with traditional programming languages, such as C, C++, and FORTRAN.
  • Python. Python is a powerful, high-level scripting language that is widely used in scientific research for a huge range of data  analysis and visualisation applications. In this workshop you will learn how to use Python, starting from basic scripts to explore syntax and data types, working up to more complicated ‘real world’ examples.
  • Getting your research published.  This workshop will explain the steps necessary to take the results of your research through to a published paper.  Led by “insiders” from IOP Publishing, it will explain what makes a good paper and why some authors succeed while others do not.
  • Meetings and conferences.  A major part of many students’ PhD is organising meetings; meetings with supervisors, collaborators, sponsors and broader workshops and conferences.  This is a practical workshop designed to help you organise conferences, meetings and events from start to finish, without compromising your research.
03Oct/16

Effective Physics Researcher 1 & 29 November 2016

GRADnet is offering a two day course for recent Physics PhD researchers in the SEPnet region.

Who:  This course is for 1st and 2nd Year Physics PhD researchers.

When:   Tuesday, 1 and 29 November 2016

Where:  The Open University, 1-11 Hawley Crescent, Camden, NW1 8NF, Room 1

Register here.  Registration deadline 25 October 2016.

What:  An interactive two-day course designed to develop the skills necessary for you to start your PhD research off on the right foot.  Throughout the two days you will participate in activities and discussions that help you develop plans and strategies which will enable you to succeed now and that will provide you with a solid foundation for the future after your doctorate.

Attendance is required on Day 1 and Day 2.  Day 2 is on 29 November 2016 at the OU in Camden and will cover activities with employers.

Day One: Starting Strong

A varied series of interactive sessions that explore;

  •  What is an effective researcher
  •  Different research approaches
  •  Critical thinking and reading
  •  Understanding expectations and supervisors
  •  Your path to completion
  •  Research project planning
  •  What you need to know
  •  Your next 100 days!

Day Two: Succeeding Now and in the Future

  •  Building your resources
  •  What will this doctorate do for me?
  •  The academic horizon
  •  Employer panel: What do employers want from physics doctoral graduates?
  •  Researcher spotlight: Presenting your research plans
06Sep/16

GRADnet Planetary Science School 14-15 November 2016

Planetary Science School 14-15 November 2016

GRADnet is pleased to announce a two day workshop for postgraduate researchers engaged in the diverse areas of Planetary Science at the SEPnet members.

Who:  Physics postgraduate researchers in planetary science.

When:  14-15 November 2016

Where:  National Physical Laboratory, Teddington, Middlesex, TW11 0LW Accommodation is pre-booked and paid by SEPnet at the Travelodge in Teddington.  Travel expenses to and from the venue can be claimed through SEPnet.

Register here.  Registration deadline 14 October 2016. You will need to be logged onto the GRADnet VRE to register.

What:  A 2-day residential workshop led by senior researchers in the SEPnet region comprising lectures, tutorials, seminars and other activities. The workshop comprises four sessions exploring difference aspects of planetary science through a mix of lectures, seminars and tutorials. There will be a poster opportunity for students to present their own plans and research.

Measuring geology on distant worlds

Led by researchers from the Open University, this session explores how rocks and minerals that form distant worlds are formed, destroyed, and rebuilt during geologic processes.  The contrasting examples of Mercury and Mars will be described.

Planetary magnetospheres

Led by researchers from the University of Southampton, this session explores how solar system bodies interact with the solar wind, the extension of the Sun’s outer atmosphere that flows outward through the solar system.

Asteroids and Comets

Led by researchers from the University of Kent, this session focuses on the exploration of asteroids and comets that recently achieved fame through Rosetta’s Philae probe first-ever landing on a comet; 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko.

Deep space communication and navigation

Getting probes to distant worlds and getting quality data back is a key aspect of any mission in planetary science.  Led by researchers at NPL this session discusses the technical and intellectual challenges involved.

31Aug/16

Connecting Industry and Researchers in Physics – A SEPnet Event – Wednesday 19 October 2016 – 17.00-20.00, University of Hertfordshire

Connecting Industry and Researchers in Physics,

Wednesday, 19 October 2016, University of Hertfordshire, Hertfordshire Sports Village, Hatfield.

SEPnet’s Graduate Network (GRADnet) is organising its 6th networking evening to facilitate greater collaboration and links between industry and physics postgraduate research students (PGRs) and researchers.

Who should attend

  • SEPnet PGR students who want to meet businesses and employers from physics-related industries to find out about career opportunities, make contacts and explore research and business ideas.
  • SEPnet partner researchers who want to build links with industry to explore how their research can create impact.
  • Businesses and employers in physics-related industries interested in recruiting physics graduates.

During the evening

  • Hear from panellists about the benefits of knowledge exchange and what physics postgraduates and postdocs can offer industry
  • Participate in a speed networking session
  • Build ongoing relationships between industry and researchers through placements, mentoring or research collaboration
  • Find out about work experience and mentoring opportunities;
  • Develop your networking and communication skills.
  • Refreshments will be provided.

How to register    This event is FREE to attend.  Places are limited so please book early by clicking on the following link:http://bit.ly/1R9GsmA.  (PGR students are requested to attend a networking workshop at 16.00). Registration deadline: 14/10/2016

Banners    If you would like to bring a banner for display let us know and we will reserve you a space.

For enquiries, contact gradnetadmin@sepnet.ac.uk

THIS EVENT IS SUPPORTED BY THE INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS