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Theoretical Particle Physics & Cosmology

PhD positions in particle physics and cosmology in the Physics Department of King's College London

PhD positions in particle physics and cosmology in the Physics Department of King's College London.

We announce the availability of PhD positions in the Theoretical Physics and Cosmology Group in the Physics Department of King's College London, starting in the autumn of 2019.  Positions may be made available to the group via funds from King's College London and other sources to work on other topics among the research interests of members of the Theoretical Physics and Cosmology Group, which includes Bobby Acharya, Jean Alexandre, Diego Blas, John Ellis, Malcolm Fairbairn, Eugene Lim, Nick Mavromatos, Chris McCabe, Mairi Sakellariadou, Sarben Sarkar and Helvi Witek. These topics include particle phenomenology, dark matter, astroparticle physics, gravitation and gravitational waves, quantum gravity and theoretical cosmology.

Diego Blas

A) The aim of this project is to investigate two aspects of theories that violate Lorentz invariance. First, to clarify the gravitational collapse in these theories and other aspects of black holes. Do these theories solve some of the puzzles of General Relativity? Second, to investigate how one can recover Lorentz invariance at low energies in these theories.

B) The aim of this project is to study how the recent developments in quantum technologies can help us to detect new phenomena beyond the standard model of particle physics.

Eugene Lim

I want to understand strong gravity physics in cosmology.

(a) Can the Big Bang actually begin?

(b) Can dark matter be discovered using gravitational waves detectors?

(c) Can we make objects that are so dense that they fools us into thinking they are black holes?

(d) Are there exotic remnants from the early universe that can be found using gravitational waves?

(e) Is there really a population of ancient black holes formed from the early universe out there to be found?

To answer all these questions require a combination of analytic and numerical tools. For the latter, we have developed a state-of-the-art numerical code that can solve the Einstein equations ( I am looking for a good student who is not afraid to learn new and unfamiliar things. Prior coding experience is not required.

Chris McCabe

Chris McCabe’s research lies in the area of astroparticle physics. This means that his research fuses ideas from particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology.  Currently, Chris is engaged in projects to learn more about dark matter, which is prevalent throughout the universe. The field is now at somewhat of a crossroads owing to the dearth of evidence for new particles at the Large Hadron Collider. New theoretical and experimental ideas are therefore needed to make progress. For this reason, Chris’ research focuses on exploring novel dark matter theories and new experimental signatures, and he is actively brainstorming with experimentalists to think of new experiments to test dark matter in the coming decade.

Mairi Sakalleriadou 

The recent direct detection of gravitational waves opened a new window in astronomy, enabling us also to test cosmological models beyond the standard cosmological model and gravitational theories beyond Einstein’s theory of General Relativity. While General Relativity explains perfectly our current observations, it is clear that there are physical situations where quantum mechanical corrections can no longer be neglected.

This project aims at studying signatures of quantum gravity proposals in present and future gravitational-wave observations. The landscape of quantum gravity (QG) is populated by several potential candidates, each characterised by its own assumptions and certainly its own predictions. Such QG proposals aim at unifying quantum mechanics and gravity in a consistent way, providing as a by-product a rich phenomenology to be tested using experimental and observational data.

Considering either a model-independent approach or a particular (perturbative of non-perturbative) quantum gravity model we will study the formation and propagation of gravitational-waves. More precisely, we will explore the properties of gravitational waves and investigate the way quantum gravity may affect the propagation and observation of gravitational waves via effects on the geometry of spacetime. It is worth mentioning that in several quantum gravity models, corrections are not Planck suppressed, hence one should not naively expect that all QG models are trivially ruled out.

The theoretical work will be accompanied by experimental tests using data from the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, while within this project we will also examine which quantum gravity proposals may survive in the delectability window of LISA and 3 rd generation interferometers.


Funding your PhD

Research Council and College Fellowships

We have some limited funding for UK Home students and EU students, which you will be automatically considered once you apply.

King's College London and the China Scholarship Council (CSC) Program

Chinese nationals are eligible for this program, which will fund the fees and provide a stipend. We will release the information soon, so please check back on this page regularly as the application process is slightly different.

The deadline is January 11 2019, and the student needs to put in explicitly '1920-KCSC' in the "Funding" section of their application. Please go to the Postgraduate Funding page for more information.

Graduate School international PGR student scholarships

This fully funded scholarship is available to non-UK and non-EU based students. We will release the information soon, so please check back on this page regularly as the application process is slightly different.

The deadline is 11 January 2019, and the student needs to put in explicitly 1920-PGR-INT in the "Funding" section of their application. Please see go to the Postgraduate Funding page for more information.

Commonwealth PhD Scholarships

Nationals of Commonwealth countries are eligible for this. Please click HERE for more information.

Funding for Select international students

Please click HERE for a list of national funding sources.

To apply:

Please submit via the KCL portal

Please visit our 'Funding your PhD'  webpage for further details and other funding opportunities. In addition, individual faculty members may have separate funding sources. New fellowships will be announced on this page. To apply for PhD positions please fill in the application form, mentioning that you would like to study in our group. For more details on funding opportunities and all other PhD admissions enquiries, contact Eugene Lim.








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