PhD Studentship - Design of a Compact Cyclotron for Proton Therapy

The University of Manchester - Physics and Astronomy

Anticipated Start Date: September 2017 for 3.5 Years

Supervisor Team:

Dr. Hywel Owen (University of Manchester, hywel.owen@manchester.ac.uk).

Dr. Timothy Antaya (Antaya Science and Technology)

Dr. Andrzej Kacperek (Clatterbridge Cancer Centre)

Project description: Superconducting cyclotrons are becoming the mainstay of modern proton-based radiotherapy, with several companies now offering treatment solutions based on the use of 230-250 MeV-output cyclotrons which are suitable for (deep-seated tumours in) adult treatments. However, delivery of low-energy protons from 30 to 70 MeV using these large cyclotrons is technically problematic and a lower-energy design - suitable for example for eye therapy and other shallow treatments – is needed; Clatterbridge Cancer CentreHospita developed the world’s first hospital proton therapy service of any kind, but is now looking to replace its machine with a more modern, sophisticated variant with the assistance of Antaya Science and Technology; Antaya is an accelerator development company with world-leading experience in designing medical cyclotrons.

This PhD project will entail using Antaya’s experience and technology platform, and apply it to Clatterbridgege Hospital’s clinical requirements to develop a cyclotron design and associated beam delivery system, intended to be a replacement for the present treatment system at Clatterbridge. The successful candidate will split their studies between the Cockcroft Institute (Cheshire, UK, working on beam delivery design), the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre (Wirral, UK, performing measurements and developing a clinical specification), and the development facility of Antaya Science and Technology (New Hampshire, USA, working on cyclotron design). It is envisaged that about 6 months’ of the candidate’s time will be spend overseas in the USA.

Qualifications applicants should have/expect to receive: The successful candidate will have or expect to obtain a first or upper second-class degree or equivalent (e.g. MPhys, MSci) in physics. Experience of accelerator physics and computational physics is desirable but not essential.

Funding and eligibility: The project is fully funded by the Science and Technology Facilities Council for 3 years, with a possible extension of 6 months; UK and other EU citizens are eligible to apply. A full package of training and support will be provided by the Cockcroft Institute, and the student will take part in a vibrant accelerator research and education community of over 150 people. An IELTS score of at least 6.5 is required.

Contact for further information: hywel.owen@manchester.ac.uk, or visit Room 7.08, Schuster Building on the University of Manchester main campus.

How to apply: www.manchester.ac.uk/postgraduate/howtoapply

This position will remain open until filled.

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Type / Role:

PhD

Location(s):

Northern England