STFC's Ernest Rutherford Fellowships

Lord Rutherford of Nelson

STFC's prestigious five-year fellowships are open to early career researchers of any nationality in the areas of Astronomy, Solar and Planetary Science, Cosmology, Particle Astrophysics and Particle Physics (including String Theory). As the number of applications from each institution is limited by STFC, the School of Physics and Astronomy will be supporting four applicants across the Astronomy, Particle Physics and String Theory research groups. Researchers in the area of astronomy who wish to be supported in their applications by the School should submit a draft case for support, CV and publication list by the end of Monday 14th August 2017. Decisions about which candidates will be supported will be made by the end of Wednesday 23rd August 2017.

Juno Champion

Institute of Physics Juno Champion

QMUL’s School of Physics and Astronomy has been awarded Juno Champion Status by the Institute of Physics (IOP) in recognition of action they have taken to address the under-representation of women in university physics.

Quantum photonics with spins in semiconductor nanostructures

Electron and hole spins can be confined in a variety of semiconductor nanostructures, including quantum dots, nanowires or monolayers. These spins can have long coherence times and can be addressed using ultra-fast optical techniques. This makes them very suitable for quantum photonics, which promises advances in fields such as quantum communication, sensing and computation. We focus on electron spins confined in self-assembled InAs quantum dots, which are initialized, manipulated and read out using optical techniques. In recent years it has been established that the electron spin’s coherence time is limited by fluctuations in the nuclear spin bath, which couple to the electron spin via the hyperfine interaction. Hole spins are less affected, but they suffer from electric fluctuations due to the hole’s larger spin-orbit interaction.

Sino-British workshop on molecular magnetism

As part of the Queen Mary University of London and Peking University joint research project on Molecular Magnetism, we will be holding a 1-day workshop to disseminate key results of the project, and open up a wider debate in the UK and Chinese scientific communities on open problems in molecular magnetism. Presentations will be given by academics and researchers involved in the project, as well as those from external institutions. Presentations will be on a variety of topics, such as single molecular magnets, metal-organic framework materials and novel high frequency methods used to measure them. Key speakers include Profs Song Gao, Bingwu Wang and Zheming Wang from Peking University, Drs Alan Drew and Anthony Phillips from QMUL, Prof Rob Hicken from Exeter University, Dr Jorge Quintanilla from Kent University and Dr Francis Pratt from the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

UK Cosmology Meeting

On the 27th February, the cosmology group in the Astronomy Unit hosted the UK Cosmology Meeting. This is a triannual informal meeting of the UK theoretical cosmology community and features short talks from young and experienced researchers alike. The meeting was a huge success with roughly 60 cosmologists attending from as far away as Edinburgh. More information about the UK Cosmology initiative and future meetings can be found at their website


In the laboratories of Airbus Defence and Space Ltd, in Stevenage (UK), engineers and scientists are developing the ExoMars Rover, which will be sent to Mars in 2018. One of the objectives of the ExoMars mission, a joint enterprise of the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), is to search for possible bio-signatures of life on Mars.

To this purpose, the ExoMars Rover has been equipped with innovative, human-inspired technology. In its 218-sol mission, the rover will have to autonomously travel on the Mars surface, identify scientifically relevant sites, safely navigate towards them and perform experiments. This talk will unveil the technology on-board the rover that will make it accomplish its mission.


GRADnet PhD Studentship second Open Day

GRADnet PhD Studentship second Open Day

The GRADnet PhD Studentship second Open Day will take place at 13:00-16:00 on Thursday, 19th March 2015 at the Royal Astronomical Society, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London. Please register here for the event.

13:00 Students arrival in main lecture theatre for short presentation from Peter McDonald

13:20 Lunch in the Council Room & networking

15:00 Close

2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The School of Physics and Astronomy has strongly contributed to the excellent results obtained in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) by QMUL, which has been ranked 9th among multi-faculty institutions in the UK. The School's Grade Point Average (GPA) of Physics research outputs (publications) are ranked joint first (with Imperial College) in London, 10th in the Russell Group and 14th in the UK (out of 41) hence cementing ourselves as among the very best Physics Departments in the UK.

These results are based on the research performed by the Astronomy Unit, Centre for Research in String Theory and the Particle Physics Research Centre. Research from the Centre for Condensed Matter and Materials Physics was submitted as Materials where QMUL was ranked 12th (out of 37) in the UK. This confirms the strength of physics research across all our fields.