Research on a doctoral training scheme

David Crosby

Photo: PhD student David Crosby

Are you considering undertaking a PhD following your undergraduate degree? The School of Physics and Astronomy has research opportunities in astronomy, condensed matter, nuclear physics, particle physics experiment & particle physics theory.

The School also offers CDT (Centre for Doctoral Training) opportunities with partner institutions. These entail an additional year which centre around the development of technical and transferrable skills, which may include the completion of teaching courses, industrial placements, attendance at workshops and participation in outreach activities. Continue reading “Research on a doctoral training scheme”

From quantum physics to harvesting energy from stars: reflection on an interview with Freeman Dyson

Freeman Dyson and Austin Morris

Photo: Freeman Dyson with student Austin Morris

I’m not sure which is more impressive. Freeman Dyson’s championing of a new era of quantum electrodynamics, or the scale upon which his formidable intellect had an impact.

In his own words, “My most important contribution was the unification of the Feynman-Schwinger-Tomonaga versions of quantum electrodynamics.”, when asked by Vedant Bhargava what he felt was his greatest scientific achievement. Yet his influence spans from fundamental particles like the electron on the scale of roughly 10−18m to a colossal megastructure dubbed a Dyson sphere that would encompass a whole star. Just for reference, the radius of the Sun is on the scale of roughly 108m. That’s something you need a powerful microscope to see right in front of you vs. something you can with your eyes (do not try this at home) 150 million kilometres away. Dyson’s influence is prevalent at every stage. Continue reading “From quantum physics to harvesting energy from stars: reflection on an interview with Freeman Dyson”