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PhD Studentship: High-Power Laser Applications of Hollow Core Fibres

University of Southampton

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Southampton
Funding for: UK Students
Funding amount: £20,000 tax-free p.a. for up to 3.5 years.
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 19th December 2022
Closes: 31st August 2023
 

This project will explore some of the unique high-power laser applications enabled by recent advances in hollow-core fibre (HCF) technology. The project will aim at setting new standards for high-power, long-range laser transmission over record-low-loss HCFs. It will explore the development of novel, energy-efficient laser sources based on gas-filled HCFs. It will explore the unique radiation-hardness of HCFs to realise innovative solutions for remote, fibre-based detection of radioactivity.

Recent years have seen remarkable progress in the development of HCFs. Not only can HCFs transmit extreme laser power levels beyond the fundamental damage threshold of glass, but they can also achieve even lower propagation loss than traditional glass fibres, as demonstrated by researchers at the ORC [1]. This progress has led to the demonstration of record kilowatt laser power transmission over a kilometre-range HCF, well beyond the capability of standard glass fibres [2]. In this project, the candidate will explore the most recent advances in HCF technology to further push the limits of high-power laser transmission. This work may be significant in several areas such as industrial laser processing, underground drilling, and nuclear decommissioning. Another opportunity arises by filling the hollow core of the HCF with gases of various compositions and pressures to explore gas-based nonlinear optical effects for the generation of light frequencies inaccessible with traditional laser systems. The long interaction length between the gas and high-intensity laser light made possible by HCFs may potentially lead to simple, energy-efficient and tunable laser sources that could benefit a large variety of applications. Finally, ionisation effects within the air- or gas-filled hollow core of the HCF may be explored to detect radioactivity. As opposed to glass-core fibres which are prone to radiation damage, HCFs have the advantage of radiation-hardness and may offer an innovative solution for the remote, distributed sensing of ionising radiation in radioactive environments.

The project will be mainly experimental but will also include some numerical modelling to support the work. The project work will take place across several research groups, covering state-of-the-art high-power laser facilities and world-leading hollow-core fibre fabrication, allowing the candidate to collaborate with experienced researchers in both fields to achieve the project objectives.

For more details, please contact Prof. Francesco Poletti, Dr. Hans Christian Mulvad or Prof. David Richardson (https://www.orc.soton.ac.uk/advanced-fibre-technologies-and-applications).

Entry Requirements

A good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).

Closing date: Applications are accepted throughout the year and several start dates throughout the year are possible. Applications for the typical Sept./Oct. 2023 start should be received no later than 31 August 2023.

Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £20,000 tax-free p.a. for up to 3.5 years.

Applications should include:

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts/Certificates to dat

For further information please contact: feps-pgr-apply@soton.ac.uk

 

 

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