PhD Studentship - Design of a VHEE Radiotherapy Machine: A Potential New Paradigm in Cancer Treatment 

The University of Manchester - School of Physics and Astronomy

Ph.D. opportunity available in the School of Physics and Astronomy, to work with Prof. R.M. Jones

There is the opportunity for a Ph.D. student to develop a high gradient linac and associated RF, operating at 200 – 250 MV, suitable for a VHEE radiotherapy machine. This research will allow for a potential new paradigm in cancer treatment. The work will capitalise on more than two decades of research conducted for CLIC (Compact Linear Collider) at CERN. With suitable adaptation, a full radiotherapy electron machine will be investigated, capable of delivering a high dose at a rapid rate –and hence able to take advantage of the latest advances in ultrahigh dose -rate “FLASH” radiotherapy. Each accelerating structure will operate at  ~ 100 MV/m with the capability of delivering 10s Gy in a highly conformal manner. Part of the Ph.D. will also entail the practicality of steering multiple linacs to the treatment area –and hence investigate “freezing” patient motion. This will entail a collaboration with the University of Manchester, Daresbury Lab., Elekta and CERN.

There will be RF, beam dynamics, vacuum science, and mechanical engineering aspects to this project. The practicalities of realising a VHEE radiotherapy machine within a realistic timeframe will be explored. The project has analytical, simulation, and experimental aspects to the research. The direction of the research will be decided according to the interest and aptitude of the student.

This studentship is funded by STFC for 4 years. The student will be based at the University of Manchester and the Cockcroft Institute and will be expected to collaborate closely with Elekta and will be encouraged communicate all results at CERN-hosted conferences and similar events.

Studentship commences Sept 2017.

For further details contact:

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Northern England