Lab Astrophysics and High Energy Densities
PhD in Magneto-hydrodynamic effects in High Energy Density Plasmas and Inertial Confinement Fusion
Supervisor: Prof. J. Chittenden
Type: Computational and theoretical (plus interaction with experimentalists)
Funding: Subject to contract but in late stages of development
Magnetic fields play a significant role in a broad range of High Energy Density Plasma experiments including Inertial Confinement Fusion through electromagnetic forces and modified heat flow. Such effects are important in experiments on the National Ignition Facility and other large laser facilities as well as large pulsed power generators. The project will make use of 3D magneto-hydrodynamic simulations to predicts the effects of magnetic fields on the performance of a range of experiments related to Inertial Fusion using direct drive, indirect drive and magnetic drive as well as Laboratory Astrophysics and material science applications.
Quantum Electrodynamics with Laser Wakefield Accelerators
Supervisor: Professor Stuart Mangles
This project will explore the use of laser wakefield accelerator beams in experiments to study QED physics. Colliding high energy electron beams from a LWFA with a high intensity laser pulse allows us to study QED physics in strong fields (eg non-linear Compton Scattering, Radiation Reaction, and non-linear Breit-Wheeler pair production). LWFAs can also be used to produce bright gamma beams using bremsstrahlung converters. Colliding these with dense X-ray fields (produced by a laser plasma interaction or a X-ray free electron laser) allows us to study the two photon Breit Wheeler process and light-by-light scattering.
Radiation driven heat transfer experiments
PhD project for October 2024
Type - Experimental
Home funding through EPSRC Prosperity Partnership with First Light Fusion
Supervised by Prof Sergey Lebedev
Utilising Radiation driven ablation platform on MAGPIE to make heat transfer measurements in plasmas of different material / ionization through Thomson Scattering absorption spectrometry, potentially then expending this to other drivers to access higher density/temperature conditions.