Category Archives: Uncategorized


Taking Control of your Career as a Female Physicist

Wednesday 15 November, 15.00 – 18.00
Hallam Conference Centre, London W1

IOP and SEPnet are holding a networking careers event for physics undergraduate and PGRs.

This half-day panel and networking event gives you a chance to find out about the range of career options open to physicists.

Hear female physicists:
• talk about their roles and how they got to where they are
• provide practical advice and information about the skills and experience you need to progress in your career

Participating organisations include: Micron Semiconductor Ltd; Leonardo; Magnetic Shields; National Physical Laboratory; University of Sussex; Royal Holloway; UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA); Ultra Electronics and others.

Refreshments will be provided. Places are limited and the event is free to attend.
Register at:


SEPnet Outreach is looking for an Evaluator for Connect Physics

SEPnet is looking for an evaluator for Connect Physics, our new workshops looking to raise the number of Year 8 students considering physics as a pathway to their future. There has been some formative evaluation and initial testing on the workshops but we would like the evaluator to join us for this final phase of testing and summative evaluation.

Details for the project can be found here.

The evaluation brief can be found here.

SEPnet Outreach will accept proposals up to £7,000 which should include any travel expenses and VAT if applicable. Any proposed budgets above this amount should be justified within the proposal. Deadline for proposals is Monday 16 October 2017.

Please contact Dominic Galliano on 0207 882 5063 /  07702 363 731 or if you would like any further information.


GRADnet Introduction to Data Intensive Science Workshop 18-20 September 2017

GRADnet Introduction to Data Intensive Science Workshop 18-20 September 2017 – Registration now open.

Who: All DISCnet CDT students. Any GRADnet PhD student with an interest in data intensive science techniques.

What: A 3-day workshop that introduces the CDT and data intensive science and will comprise lectures, tutorials, and examples of the benefits of data intensive science techniques as applied to current research projects and induction into the DISCnet Centre for Doctoral Training: What is DISCnet? What kind of training is offered? What industry placements are available? This session gives an overview of the centre and provides information on how you can get involved.

  • Lunch and networking reception on 18th September: This is a great networking opportunity. DISCnet students, GRADnet students, supervisory teams, and the DISCnet coordinators will get to know each other in an informal setting.
  • Examples in data intensive science: How does data science give the edge in your PhD? Current PhD students from several SEPnet universities will demonstrate how data intensive science techniques have helped shape their PhD research. Topics will range from astronomical surveys, to numerical simulations and particle physics accelerator data.
  • Tools for data intensive science in particle physics and astronomy: This session will introduce you to important packages and tools that are in use in the various research fields. We will provide help installing software and guide you through the first steps.

When18th – 20th September 2017

Register here.  Registration deadline 16 August 2017

Where: Old Thorns Manor Hotel, Liphook, Hampshire

Requirements: A laptop computer is essential for this workshop.

Numbers: 30-35 delegates

The Data Intensive Science Centre in SEPnet (DISCnet) is a new STFC-funded Centre for Doctoral Training.

Eventbrite - GRADnet Introduction to Data Intensive Science Workshop 18-20 September 2017


Collaborating with Industry and Understanding Innovate UK, Friday 23 June 9.15am – 2.30pm, University of Surrey

Collaborating with Industry and Understanding Innovate UK
Friday 23 June   9.15am – 2.30pm
University of Surrey

Join Surrey for this year’s annual Business Development event held on Friday 23 June from 9.15am – 2.30pm. The objectives of the day are to promote collaboration with industry and to update you on the Innovate UK grant landscape including advice on applications and what to expect in 2018.

Speakers will include Dr Ian Brotherston, Innovate UK; Dr Ben Shenoy, Director of Business Insights Lab, SBS; Caroline Fleming, Head of Surrey Incubation; Dr Clive Cheong Took, Lecturer Computer Science; William Medcalf, William Medcalf Ltd. and Prof James Aitken, Head of Business Transformation.

By holding this event, Surrey hope to provide you with:
* an understanding of the many ways in which the University can engage with business, and the benefits of doing so
* an update on the forthcoming Innovate UK landscape (including the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund)
* improved confidence and tips on how to engage with industry ways to engage with SMEs
inspirational case studies of successful collaboration and
* awareness of the RIS Business Development Team and how we can help you

Parallel workshops will provide tips on writing Innovate UK applications and undertaking Consultancy and Expert Services at the University of Surrey.

You can find out more about the day and the agenda here:

If you would like to book now please visit the event’s eventbrite page.

Big Bang Fair

IOP Astronomy & Physics Students (CAPS) Careers Fair, Wednesday 28 June, University College London

IOP Conference of Astronomy and Physics Students (CAPS) Careers Fair
Wednesday 28 June, University College London

• The annual Conference of Astronomy and Physics Students (CAPS) is the largest undergraduates physics conference in the UK and is taking place from 27–30 June
• Over 200 physics and astronomy students will attend to engage with employers through the fair, speed networking or sponsorship
• A series of student talks will highlight the diverse research areas within physics
• A FREE Careers Fair on 28 June will enable employers to promote their company and employment opportunities to students.

• Meet the brightest and best physics students
• Make students aware of your career opportunities whilst proactively promoting your company as an employer of choice
• Raise your company’s profile by hosting a mock interview session, holding a talk or participating in the speed-networking session
• Sponsor the event Gala Dinner for £5,000 or contribute to the running of the conference for £1,000
• Your company’s profile will be featured on all marketing materials, emails and in relevant speeches.

• To reserve your place at this event, please contact by Monday 22 May.
• If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact  Visit


In Introduction to Quantum Computing

The Quantum Technologies School took place on 24-26 April 2017 at Old Thorns, Liphook in Hampshire. Over 50 delegates attended the residential school led by senior researchers in the SEPnet region. PGRs were exposed to applications of physics which directly rely on the properties of quantum mechanics to perform a function beyond current technological capability. A total of six sessions spanned different directions in which quantum technology is progressing: Quantum computation, Quantum simulation, Quantum sensing / metrology and Quantum communications.

A PGR delegate gave positive feedback saying “the different areas of quantum technology were touched in the right balance.  This makes the conference quite interesting.  A great use and worth of my time.  A great impact into my life and a wonderful exposure for a newbie in the world of quantum technology”.

Thank you to all the speakers: Erika Andersson, Heriot-Watt University, Sougato Bose, University College London; Christopher Chunnilall, NPL; Andreas Freise, University of Birmingham, Eran Ginossar, University of Surrey, Jaewoo Joo, University of Surrey, Stefan Kuhr, University of Strathclyde, John Morton, University College London; Yuri Ovchinnikov, NPL​, Diego Porras, University of Sussex, Alessandro Rossi, University of Cambridge​, Tim Spiller, University of York, Seb Weidt, University of Sussex and Jonathan Williams, NPL.

Quantum crypto with chocolate activity!

Congratulations to the poster winners:

Joint first place: Corin Gawith and Oliver Trojack, University of Southampton.

Joint second place: Rhonda Au Yeung, University of Surrey and Teresa Hönigl-Decrinis, Royal Holloway, University of London.

(L-R) Dr Eran Ginossar, Teresa Hönigl-Decrinis, Oliver Trojack and Sam Berry receiving the prize on behalf of Corin Gawith.


GRADnet conference at Southampton organised by NPL PhD students

At the end of March, SEPnet/National Physical Laboratory PhD students, Alex Browning (Surrey) and Héctor Corte-León (Royal Holloway), organised a conference at Southampton University with the help of the SEPnet Graduate Network (GRADnet). The conference on Functional Scanning Probe Microscopy Techniques brought together PhD students from the nine SEPnet universities to promote interaction with senior researchers in the field of scanning probe microscopy.

With almost a year of planning, this conference represents one of a series which focusses on giving students (Alex and Héctor in this case) an opportunity to develop their professional skills by contacting speakers, advertising the conference and coordinating the timetable for the different talks and poster sessions.

The main areas covered at this year’s conference included biotechnology applications (e.g. study of cell’s membrane stiffness); in-situ magnetic force microscopy (application of magnetic fields during the imaging process) and functionalized probes and the interaction with the sample’s surface (e.g. by attaching proteins to the apex of the probe).

Delegates gave positive feedback about the conference and welcomed the opportunity to present talks to their peers and senior researchers and to network with other institutions.


A Broadband Look into Astrophysical Processes

On the 30th-31st March 2017 the University of Southampton hosted two student-led conferences funded by SEPnet – the South East Physics Network. The astronomy-themed conference led by Peter Boorman, Christopher Frohmaier and Bella Boulderstone, all PhD students at Southampton, was entitled ‘A Broadband Look into Astrophysical Process’.

The primary aim was to expose all attendees to as many different areas in modern astrophysical research as possible. It has now become commonplace for new PhD students to start work in a particular area or wavelength of astronomy without the wider context of how their research will fit into the complete picture. For this reason, the Scientific Organising Committee wanted to give all attendees an idea of modern day research in all areas of astronomy – not just their own.

The 43 registered attendees included PhD students, post-doctoral researchers and invited speakers from almost 15 different institutions throughout the UK. The conference programme included 7 invited review talks on major areas in astronomy, including: radio; infrared; optical; ultraviolet; X-ray; gamma ray and cosmology/big data. There were additionally 14 student-contributed oral presentations and 13 poster presentations, all on a multitude of astrophysical research topics. All poster presenters were also given the chance to present the key findings of their work in a 1-minute ‘flash presentation’, in which they were given a minute to present a single slide to the audience.

Copies of presentations are included on the conference website:

Student delegates and speakers attending the conference


GRADnews Issue 6 – Spring 2017 Available

The Spring 2017 issue of GRADnews has been sent off for printing. It will be distributed to all PGRs and staff across the SEPnet members over the next two weeks. Watch out for it in your mailslots or in your PGR student common rooms/areas. If there’s one in your mailslot, then it’s for you!

This issue concentrates on the important area of Impact. More and more Research is evaluated on the broader Impact it has on society, the economy, and people. Six Impact studies have been funded by SEPnet and they are reported on in this issue. In addition we report on DISCnet, a new initiative in Data Intensive Science, the recent Winter School held at Cumberland Lodge in Windsor, and a reminder on the Enterprising Ideas Competition.

As always, please ensure you have a functioning VRE account so you can fully participate in the programme. If you need help, please look here: 

You can download a copy of the newsletter here: GRADnews Issue 6 Final