Research Associate in Novel Micro-structured Optical Fibre Delivery of High Peak Power, Ultrashort Pulsed Laser Light

Heriot-Watt University - School of Engineering and Physical Sciences

The post sits within the High Power Laser Applications Theme of the Applied Optics and Photonics (AOP) Group at Heriot-Watt University. The AOP is multi-disciplinary research group comprising approximately 30 members investigating high power laser applications, optical diagnostics, and optical fibre sensors. The post is part of a joint project with the Centre for Photonics and Photonic Materials at the University of Bath, supported by EPSRC together with 5 industrial partners.

We are looking for a creative and highly motivated researcher willing to work closely with our academic and industrial collaborators – the University of Bath, Coherent Scotland, Litron Lasers, M-Solv, Powerlase and AWE (Orion Laser Facility). Regular communication with, and reporting to, our partners is an important part of the role; and some national and international travel is required, including short periods spent working at our industrial collaborators. General tasks will involve scientific research; analysis and interpretation of data; daily oversight of the activities of postgraduate and undergraduate project students in the laboratory; communication with other investigators involved in this collaborative project; preparation of scientific papers; presentation of research at conferences.

In detail the postholder is required to:

  • Design and carry out scientific and engineering experiments using high power laser systems and novel optical fibres, and undertake associated analysis
  • Work with industrial partners to develop and undertake industrial demonstrations of the optical fibre technology
  • Present research findings and plans at regular internal meetings, and meetings with academic and industrial partners
  • Provide guidance as required to support staff, research students and any other students who may be assisting with the research
  • Prepare and edit scientific papers
  • Present research findings at conferences
  • Participate in the broader work of the Research Group, including industrial outreach e.g. at workshops, conferences or other meetings
  • Assist in the day-to-day maintenance of the experimental facilities, liaising with companies and external collaborators
  • Assist the development of student research skills, and contribute to the assessment of student knowledge in the context of teaching assistant and supervision duties.

The ideal candidate will have a strong theoretical understanding and recent experimental experience in one or more of the following fields: optical fibres; applications of high power lasers in manufacturing; ultrashort pulsed lasers; applied optics.

Applicants should hold a PhD in a relevant area of fibre optics, lasers, applied optics or related subject (or a PhD thesis submitted by the start date of the project) and have experience of experimental design.

The post is available for 18 months

Informal enquiries may be made to Professor Duncan Hand at

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and ethnic minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts at Heriot-Watt.

For application details and further information please go to:

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