Postgraduate research project

High-performance computer simulation of laser-driven coherent X-ray generation for imaging applications

Competition funded View fees and funding
Type of degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Entry requirements
2:1 honours degree View full entry requirements
Faculty graduate school
Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences
Closing date

About the project

Generation of femtosecond and attosecond X-ray pulses using intense laser pulses has transformed ultrafast science. The ability to produce coherent ultrafast X-ray pulses has applications in many areas, from the investigation of ultrafast molecular dynamics to biomedical imaging.

In this PhD project, you will exploit computer simulations to further develop and optimise X-ray sources for coherent imaging, in close collaboration with experimental work already happening in the Ultrafast Laser X-ray Group.

You will theoretically investigate all effects that contribute to X-ray generation in our setup: the propagation of ultrashort intense laser pulses through a dilute gas, the ionisation of the gas by these pulses, and the interaction of the resulting plasma with the laser and subsequent X-ray radiation generation by atomic recombination. For example, we will look at novel pump lasers and hollow-core optical fibres as gas-filled waveguides and investigate the effects of laser pulse shaping in space and time to optimise the generation of X-rays.

You will be using a complex computer model that our group has recently developed as the basis for this project. The code is written in C++ and Python and runs on the Southampton supercomputer cluster Iridis.

You will work in a supportive group of like-minded researchers and benefit from the world-leading expertise in these fields at the Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC).