EPSRC DTP Fully Funded PhD Studentship

EPSRC DTP PhD Studentship: The applications and properties of ultra-cold atoms in ring and shell geometries (2022)

A fully funded EPSRC DTP PhD studentship in the Department of Physics & Astronomy.

What you get

  • Fully-paid tuition fees for three and a half years.
  • A tax-free bursary for living costs for three and a half years. From October 2022/23 this is expected to be £16,062 per year
  • A support grant for three and a half years of £1,650 per year for travel and conferences.
  • If you are not a UK national, nor an EU national with UK settled/pre-settled status, you will need to apply for a student study visa before admission

Type of award

Postgraduate Research

PhD project

The project: 

This project concerns theoretical and numerical calculations to improve the understanding and application of ultra-cold atoms in novel topologies and to develop applications relevant to Quantum Technologies.

Ultra-cold atoms (that is, atoms at micro-Kelvin temperatures or below) are excellent candidates for sensitive atomic physics experiments. In particular, matter-wave interference can be used for inertial sensing and gravitational sensing. Potential applications to rotation sensing are of interest in this project. While laboratory rotation sensing is so accurate that the transient rotations of continental plates can be detected, different approaches need to be taken to develop portable systems. This is a vital step if quantum technology applications are to be developed.

Two topologies will be part of the project: ultra-cold atoms trapped on bubble surfaces, and atoms trapped, or guided in rings. A quantum bubble trap is currently active on the International Space Station Cold Atom Experiment and ring traps for cold atoms have been made by a number of experimental groups. Garraway’s group has expertise in designing bubble and ring traps using magnetic and electro-magnetic fields. Consideration of Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) will be given: a BEC gives a particularly strong overlap and correlation of atomic matter. The project will examine designs, excitations and the behaviour of vortices in the two principal topologies. It is expected that there will be collaboration with experimentalists and and attention will be given to issues arising from the potential, or actual, realisation of the systems being studied. Interferometry around a ring, or Sagnac interferometry, is a Quantum Technology challenge which can potentially be used for rotation sensing and will be explored in this project.


  • Applicants must hold, or expect to hold, at least a UK upper second class degree (or non-UK equivalent qualification) in Physics, or a closely-related area, or else a lower second class degree followed by a relevant Master's degree.
  • This award is open to UK and International students


10 June 2022 23:45

How to apply

Apply through the University of Sussex on-line system. 


Select the PhD in Physics, with an entry date of September 2022.

In the Finance & Fees section, state that you wish to be considered for studentship no EPSRC/2022/Physics/01 

Due to the high volume of applications received, you may only hear from us if your application is successful.

Contact us

If you have practical questions about the progress of your on-line application or your eligibility, contact Emma Ransley at mps-pgrsupport@sussex.ac.uk

For academic questions about the project, contact Prof Garraway at b.m.garraway@sussex.ac.uk


At level(s):
PG (research)

Application deadline:
10 June 2022 23:45 (GMT)
the deadline has now expired


The award is available to people from these specific countries: