University of Exeter PhD Studentship in 2D Materials

  • Phd
  • £119,000 over 4 years
  • 31 July 2021

Quantum networks promise to revolutionise computing and communication, with the underlying idea to link individual or small clusters of qubits via a photonic channel. Amongst many potential architectures, colour centres in wide bandgap semiconductors provide a versatile platform and considerable progress has been made, particularly with the negatively charged nitrogen vacancy in diamond (NV) (see ref. 1 for a recent review). NV-centres fulfil many of the criteria necessary for a spin qubit, but also have several inherent disadvantages. Most notably, NV centres have poor optical properties and scalability is hindered by the challenge of fabricating devices from diamond. Colour centres in hBN [2] are an interesting alterative and have shown considerable early promise, thanks to their excellent optical properties, potential for photonic integration and recently the report of optically detected spin resonance [3]. This project will build on our recent work, using multicolour laser excitation to control and stabilise hBN colour centres [4], with an integrated microwave and photonic platform to control and investigate their spin properties. Ultimately, this will allow us to probe their potential as a spin qubit, with applications in quantum information, communication and nanoscale sensing.

This project will be funded by an EPSRC ICASE award and the successful candidate will work with Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology, including research placements at their Technology and Applications Laboratories.


Essential criteria:

  • Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline;
  • Vision and motivation (for research & professional development);
  • Evidence of the ability to work collaboratively and to engage in a diverse community;
  • Evidence of excellent written and oral skills in English.

The highest quality candidates will also be able to demonstrate one of more of the following:

  • Specialist knowledge about one or more of the 8 research areas listed above;
  • Training in research methodology (e.g. undergraduate research projects);
  • Research outputs (e.g. papers) and/or other indicators of academic excellence (e.g. awards).


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Total value of around £119,000, which includes approximately £20,000 towards the research project (travel, consumables, equipment etc.), tuition fees, and an annual, tax-free stipend starting at approximately £17,500 per year for UK/EU students.

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