Summer Bursaries 2009


Information about the Summer Bursaries was circulated earlier by email to all interested parties. A limited no. of bursaries will be awarded on a competitive basis. Where possible decisions will be made shortly after the end of term.

Eligibility: Summer bursaries will be awarded on a competitive basis. More advanced students will be preferred. MSci students will be preferred over BSc students. Potential PhD candidates will be preferred. Academic performance in previous examinations and coursework and attendance records will be used as award criteria, as necessary. Final year students are not eligible.

In this page we provide a list of projects requested and/or still being advertised, for Summer 2009. Please note that some of the information may still be incomplete or preliminary.

Interested students should get in touch with prospective supervisors.

Students are required to submit a one-page report on the outcome of their studentship. The report must be signed off by the supervisor and submitted to the RRC chair at the end of the studentship. The report will be filed with the student records.

List of projects being offered (preliminary)

For each project the following information should be provided by the prospective supervisor by email to Denise:

For each project the following information should be provided:

  • Title of project
  • Duration (max 8 weeks)
  • Supervisor
  • Student (if "?", interested students should contact supervisor for more information)
  • Brief description of project

Professor V. Petrashov

  • Title of project "Superconducting properties of gated ferromagnetic nano-structures"
  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Professor Victor Petrashov, Research Officer Dr Rais Shaikhaidarov, PDRA Chris Checkley and PhD student Richard Marsh.
  • Student: D.J.Voneshen, Connor Shelley
  • Brief description of project:

Dr. P. Karataev

  • Title of project "Radiative processes initiated by relativistic electrons: control and applications"
  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Dr. P.Karataev
  • Student: Rob Ainsworth, Vishal Panchal
  • Brief description of project:

Electron accelerators are powerful instruments in various areas of scientific research such as particle physics, material science medicine and biology. Relativistic nature of electrons provides an opportunity to generate intense EM radiation beams with a very broad spectrum via such mechanisms as Synchrotron Radiation, Transition Radiation, Diffraction Radiation,etc. Detailed control of the EM radiation characteristics gives an opportunity to extract the information about the electron beam itself to be able to improve its quality which is essential for stable and reliable accelerator operation required by scientific community.

Dr S. Molloy

  • Title of project "Acoustic Imaging of Accelerated Electron Beams"
  • Duration: 6 weeks
  • Supervisor: Dr S Molloy
  • Student: Daniel Caroli, Lorraine Bobb
  • Brief description of project:

Imaging of the cross section of a relativistic electron beam is usual accomplished with the use of screens constructed to emit light through various physical processes when struck by the electrons. In the case of modern light sources, the very short bunches cause this emission to be dominated by coherent light, thus making the measurement impossible.

This project is to investigate the possibilities of using measurements of the acoustic waves produced when a beam hits a metallic or crystalline disc to determine the cross section of the incident beam. Due to the importance of such beam measurements, this scheme has the potential to be installed world-wide at the multitude of new light sources being constructed.

The project will consist of some mixture of simulation, hardware development, and data analysis.

Dr. V. Boisvert

  • Title of project "Software for performance studies of a switch based electronic card for the ATLAS detector"
  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Dr. V. Boisvert, Dr. A. Misiejuk
  • Student: Spencer Compton, Jethro Smith

  • Brief description of project:

The project entails the installation of the CERN Data Acquisition (DAQ) software that will allow the study of the performance of the ROBIN card, an electronic card that was jointly designed by RHUL, NIKHEF and Manheim University and which is currently used in ATLAS. This DAQ software will communicate with the electronic card and will be able to record the performance of the card, more specifically we are interested in the performance of this card when it is operated in a "switch-based" mode. This performance will be compared to the results obtained from a custom software written by RHUL research staff and will also provide a cross checks of measurements currently done at CERN.

The interested student does not need any prerequisite knowledge of computing (it is expected that the student took PH2150), although an interest in computers in general and in the hardware used for the ATLAS detector is useful.

Professor B. Cowan

  • Title of project "Development of an Electromagnetism experiment for second year laboratory"
  • Duration: 6-8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Professor B. Cowan
  • Student: Rosamunde Pare, Joshua Stafford-Haworth
  • Brief description of project:

Development of a demonstration / experiment to show the real effect of the displacement current. This will involve making the equipment, taking careful measurements, and establishing the feasibility of the idea.

  • Title of project: "Development of a Statistical Physics experiment for second year laboratory"
  • Duration: 6-8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Professor B. Cowan
  • Student: Rosamunde Pare, Joshua Stafford-Haworth
  • Brief description

Development of a demonstration/experiment to show the strange thermodynamic properties of rubber (bands) – the negative expansion coefficient and other ‘exotic’ features. This will involve making the equipment, taking careful measurements, and establishing the feasibility of the idea.

Dr. Pedro Teixeira-Dias

  • Title of project "Search for the Higgs particle with the ATLAS detector at the LHC "
  • Duration: 6 weeks
  • Supervisor: Dr Pedro Teixeira-Dias (Office W260)
  • Student: Lorraine Bobb, Jacobo Blanco, Spencer Compton
  • Brief description of project:

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN will start producing proton-proton collision data in Autumn 2009. The search for the Higgs particle -- believed to be at the heart of the explanation as to why fundamental particles have any mass at all -- is one of the main priorities in the LHC scientific programme.

This project will consist of the analysis of simulated ATLAS data,including Higgs particle production as well as background processes. The student will work on the determination of Higgs particle production rates leading to specific final states, and on data selection methods to distinguish between the Higgs signal and background processes. Competence in programming (eg as demonstrated in PH2150) would be a significant advantage.

Dr. Phil Meeson

  • Title of project "Optimisation of Josephson Junction Properties"
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Supervisor: Phil Meeson and Gregoire Ithier
  • Student: Jonathan Burnett
  • Brief description of project:

Josephson Junctions developed at RHUL can be improved in a variety of ways, the principle aim being to achieve full control of the tunnelling current and eliminate random factors affecting fabrication. The aim of the project will be to fully test the performance of new metallic film deposition facilities presently being purchased. Ultimately this will require careful low noise, low temperature measurements to fully characterise the junctions and expose the quantum effects we seek.

Dr. Stewart Boogert

  • Title : "Fresnel diffraction integrals for simulation of optical systems"
  • Duration : 8 weeks
  • Supervisor : Dr. Stewart Boogert
  • Student : Gemma Smith
  • Brief description :

The passage of light through optical systems including matter is important for the developing measurement systems such as microscopes and telescopes, but also for the manipulation of coherent beams such as lasers, distance sources (stars) and accelerators. The aim of this project is to develop a library of functions for Fresnel diffraction calculation which could be applied for undergraduate teaching demonstration, research projects including the laser-wire other projects within the accelerator physics group.

  • Title of project "Undergraduate telescope system upgrades and development "
  • Duration: 8 weeks
  • Supervisor: Dr. Stewart Boogert
  • Student: Ziggi Sheldrake, Laura Lewis, Mathew Pannell
  • Brief description of project:

The undergraduate 10" Meade reflecting telescope is used for 2nd year undergraduate teaching and 3rd and 4th year astronomy and physics projects. We are planning to upgrade the telescope infrastructure to enable more detailed and challenging projects. We are planning to upgrade the digital camera systems and the control of the telescope tracking system. These upgrades will require programming in an object orientated language to develop an integrated telescope control. It would be beneficial if the prospective student is comfortable with a programing language like Java, Python or C++, although not essential.

List of Students who participated in the Summer Bursary Scheme 2009

Connor Shelly supervisor: Petrashov
Rob Ainsworth supervisor: Karataev
Lorraine Bob supervisor: Molloy (6 weeks)
Spencer Compton supervisor: Boisvert
Josh Stafford-Haworth supervisor: B. Cowan (teaching project: whole cost from department)
Jethro Smith supervisor: B. Cowan (teaching project: whole cost from department)
Jacobo Blanco supervisor: Teixeira-Dias (6 weeks)
Jonathan Burnett supervisor: Meeson
Gemma Smith supervisor: Boogert
Laura Lewis supervisor: Boogert (teaching project: whole cost from department)
Lara Zepic supervisor: Boogert

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Topic revision: r26 - 17 Feb 2011 - PedroTeixeiraDias

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