Category: Studentships

Studentships advert

Fully-funded PhD studentships at Northumbria University

The Solar and Space Physics research group at Northumbria University (Newcastle upon Tyne, UK) is inviting applications for fully-funded PhD studentships for an October 2022 start. These are a mixture of University funded 3-year studentship and 3.5-year STFC-funded studentships. This year, we are offering PhDs on the following topics:

University-funded, 3-year PhD studentships, deadline = 18th February 2022
• Causality pathways in space: Extracting the storm-time bias of space weather forecasting (principal supervisor: Dr Sarah Bentley)

• Deep learning of ground magnetometer networks for space physics (principal supervisor: Dr Sarah Bentley)

STFC-funded, 3.5-year PhD studentships. Deadline = 1st March 2022

• Solar active region energetics, magnetic polarity mixing and their relation to flares (principal supervisor: Dr Shaun Bloomfield)

• The Physics of Solar Prominences: an AI/ML approach (principal supervisor: Dr Stephane Regnier)

• Exploring fundamental MagnetoHydroDynamic (MHD) properties of solar chromospheric magnetic fields, via a unique observation of a large-scale swirl and associated magnetic null point (principal supervisor: Dr Eamon Scullion)

• Plasma thermodynamics of the inner heliosphere with Solar Orbiter and Parker Solar Probe (principal supervisor: Dr Robert Wicks)

Full details can be found at:

For details of how to apply, see:

For informal questions, please contact the relevant supervisor, and/or contact Professor James McLaughlin (

Deadline for applications: 18th February 2022 (for University-funded) and 1st March 2022 (for STFC-funded)

Start Date: 1st October 2022 or 1st March 2023

Overview of the research group
Northumbria University’s long-standing expertise in Solar and Space Physics research has been supported with core funding from STFC and NERC as well as funding from EU Horizon 2020, European Space Agency (ESA), UK Space Agency (UKSA), the US Air Force, the National Solar Observatory (USA), the Leverhulme Trust, and the Royal Astronomical Society. Group members include STFC Ernest Rutherford Fellow Dr Patrick Antolin, STFC Ernest Rutherford Fellow Dr John Coxon and Future Leader Fellow Dr Richard Morton. Group members sit on various national and international panels including the STFC Education, Training and Careers Committee (Prof James McLaughlin), STFC Solar System Advisory Panel (Dr Richard Morton), STFC Project Peer Review Panel (Dr Robert Wicks), UKSA’s Space Programme Advisory Committee (Prof Clare Watt) and ESA’s Space Science Advisory Committee (Prof Jonathan Rae). Members of the group, including Prof Jonathan Rae, Prof Clare Watt, Dr Shaun Bloomfield and Dr Jasmine Sandhu also contribute to the ongoing UKRI SWIMMR (Space Weather Instrumentation, Measurement, Modelling and Risk) national space weather programme in support of the UK Met Office. The group’s recent research achievements include the discovery of coronal reconnection nanojets (Antolin et al., 2021, Nature Astronomy, 5, 54), creating global maps of the solar magnetic field (Yang et al., 2020, Science, 368, 694), and revealing a basal contribution from p-modes to the Alfvénic wave flux in the Sun’s atmosphere (Morton, Weberg & McLaughlin, 2019, Nature Astronomy, 3, 223).… continue to the full article

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PhD Studentships at UCL/MSSL

Dear all,

The Mullard Space Science Laboratory (MSSL), UCL’s Department of Space and Climate Physics, invites applications for STFC PhD studentships starting in September 2022. We would very much appreciate if you could forward this information to any students in your departments that may have an interest in pursuing a PhD at MSSL.

MSSL is a world-leading space science laboratory. It offers a unique environment, with scientists at the forefront of space science research working alongside top engineers building and testing instruments for space missions. We offer a range of research degrees, including PhDs in space science, astrophysics, climate physics, and systems engineering.

The applications from both UK and non-UK students for Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) studentships remain open until 31 January 2022. The STFC studentship will cover fees and stipends for the 3.5 years of research degree study.
You can find details about the application process here:

We offer the following topics for PhD projects in the area of solar-system research (primary supervisors given in brackets):

Planetary Science:
– Identification of biosignatures on Mars using the ExoMars Rosalind Franklin rover (Dr Louisa Preston)
– The many influences on comets’ tails (Prof. Geraint Jones)

Solar Physics:
– Spectroscopic signatures of solar flare onset (Prof. Sarah Matthews)
– How do magnetic waves affect plasma composition? (Dr David Long)
– Our Sun, the astrophysical particle accelerator (Dr Hamish Reid)
– Can solar eruptions be forecast using a novel combination of observations and machine learning techniques? (Prof. Lucie Green)

Space Plasma Physics:
– Solar Orbiter: studies of solar wind dynamics (Dr Georgios Nicolaou)
– Investigating the Earth’s magnetosphere using multi-spacecraft measurements (Prof. Andrew Fazakerley)
– Imaging the Earth’s magnetosphere response to solar wind variability (Prof. Graziella Branduardi-Raymont)
– Interactions between electrostatic fluctuations and electrons in the solar wind (Dr Daniel Verscharen)

More details on these projects can be found here:

Best wishes,

—Daniel Verscharen… continue to the full article

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PhD positions at Aberystwyth University

Funded PhD positions at Aberystwyth University – closing date end January 2022

The Solar System Physics research group within the Physics Department of Aberystwyth University seeks high-quality candidates for 3-yr funded PhD projects in the field of Solar System Physics. The group has particular strengths in modelling and observational analysis of the solar atmosphere and solar wind. Our recent work concentrates on the development of novel data analysis techniques for solar atmospheric images, ground-based spectropolarimetric analysis of the quiescent and flaring corona, space weather studies and forecasting, advanced numerical modelling of coronal structures, and impacts of space weather on planetary atmospheres. We also develop new instrumentation for coronal and planetary applications.

Applications are due by end January 2022 for a September 2022 start. Outstanding applications will also be entered for the Aberystwyth University Aberdoc scholarship competition. Applicants should follow the instructions at ; note that a description of the proposed research project is required. Please therefore talk to a potential supervisor to help prepare this part of the application.

For initial enquiries, please contact Dr. Huw Morgan, by email: to the full article

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PhD positions at the University of Oslo, 2022

The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences of the University of Oslo announces a special MSCA-Cofund Ph.D. programme in computational sciences. In 2022, 16 Ph.D. students will be accepted, of whom two will do their Ph.D. theses within computational astrophysics.

The programme starts with 3 months’ intensive joint training in computational methods, before the students will spend the rest of the 3-year programme at different departments, to do a strongly computational research project in their department. Through the three-year programme, the students will also participate in three joint workshops, and they will for a period of one to three months be on secondment to other academic or commercial institutions.

Prospective students must fulfil all requirements (academic and language) for being admitted as Ph.D. students in the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. Applicants cannot have been resident in Norway for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the date of recruitment.

The Ph.D. students will receive a salary of NOK 491 200 – 534 400 per annum depending on qualifications and seniority.

Application deadline is 1st of February, 2022.

For further information and link to application portal, see:

The applicants must in their application specify which research project they will choose. The possible projects in astrophysics are:

Interpretation of solar observations, using Deep Learning:

WholeSun: New codes and frameworks for exascale computing for multi-scale simulations: to the full article

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DiRAC Innovation Placement

This is an exciting opportunity for a PhD student or postdoc to work for 6 months on code development for a space weather project. In this project, a tool will be created for solar flare forecasting. To be more precise, a code will be developed that will take solar magnetogram observations (of magnetic field emerging into the solar atmosphere) as input and calculate a series of measures related to the topology of the solar magnetic field. Particular signatures of these measures will be used for flare forecasting and compared to other satellite data. The code, and associated documentation, will be used in cutting-edge solar physics and space weather research. It will also help to facilitate collaborations between research groups and national and international stakeholders in space weather.

Full details relating to the position can be found at
(scroll down to find the description under the University of Glasgow logo).

For any enquiries, please feel free to contact me ( The deadline for applications is 5pm on Monday the 6th of December 2021.

Best wishes,
David MacTaggart to the full article

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PhD opportunity (3.5 years, fully-funded) at the University of Exeter. Deadline = 10th January 2022

Understanding nonlinear wave-particle interactions in Earth’s radiation belts to improve space weather modelling.

NERC GW4+ DTP PhD studentship for 2022 Entry, PhD in Mathematics. University of Exeter, Exeter, UK.

Lead Supervisor: Dr Oliver Allanson, University of Exeter, Mathematics, Environmental Maths & CGAFD.

Additional Supervisors: Dr Nigel Meredith, British Antarctic Survey, Space Weather & Atmosphere Team

Full information on the project and the application details are here:

About the PhD opportunity

This project is one of a number that are in competition for funding from the NERC Great Western Four+ Doctoral Training Partnership (GW4+ DTP).  The GW4+ DTP consists of the Great Western Four alliance of the University of Bath, University of Bristol, Cardiff University and the University of Exeter plus five Research Organisation partners:  British Antarctic Survey, British Geological Survey, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology,  the Natural History Museum and Plymouth Marine Laboratory.  The partnership aims to provide a broad training in earth and environmental sciences, designed to train tomorrow’s leaders in earth and environmental science. For further details about the programme please see

For eligible successful applicants, the studentships comprises:

  • A stipend for 3.5 years (currently £15,609 p.a. for 2022/23) in line with UK Research and Innovation rates
  • Payment of university tuition fees
  • A research budget of £11,000 for international conference, lab, field and research expenses
  • A training budget of £3,250 for specialist training courses and expenses

About the project

The Earth’s Outer Radiation Belt is a region of near-Earth space containing high-energy charged particles that are trapped by the geomagnetic field. Whilst we know that the radiation belt environment is ultimately driven by the solar wind, it is very challenging to model these particle populations.

The myriad socio-economic risks posed by space weather effects are reflected through its inclusion in the UK Cabinet Office National Risk Register for Civil Emergencies. Accurate modelling and prediction is essential for safeguarding the operational satellites in orbit that underpin modern society – placing a growing reliance on forecasts such as those based on the world-leading model developed at the British Antarctic Survey. This model is now being incorporated into the UK MET Office Space Weather Forecasting Suite – one of 3 space weather prediction centres worldwide. Existing radiation belt modelling and forecasting capabilities rely upon techniques that treat electromagnetic waves determining the electron dynamics as having very small amplitudes. However, recent satellite datasets have demonstrated the prevalence of large amplitude (aka ‘nonlinear’) electromagnetic waves. Understanding the impact of nonlinear waves on space weather modelling is one of the biggest international challenges in radiation belt science today.… continue to the full article

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PhD position at KU Leuven (Belgium) for the modelling of solar coronal oscillations

A PhD position under the supervision of Tom Van Doorsselaere has been opened at the Centre for mathematical Plasma Astrophysics (CmPA) of the Department of Mathematics, KU Leuven, Belgium. The position is for 4 years and fits within the framework of the ERC project BOSS-WAVES. The topic is on the numerical and analytical modelling of waves in the solar corona. In particular, we aim to construct numerical models for streamer waves to fully exploit their seismological potential.

The position aims to start on 15 September ’21. The deadline for application is 7 July ’21, via the link below: to the full article

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PhD in Physics of Young Stars

We are offering an STFC-Funded PhD project at the University of Dundee. The successful candidate will join the Magnetohydrodynamics and Astrophysics group with research interests including stellar and planetary formation and evolution, solar physics, magnetohydrodynamics, and applied mathematics.

A topic may be chosen from within the following research areas:

Observational astrophysics of young stars, star formation and planet formation. This project involves analysis of time-domain and velocity-resolved data to gain information on the tiny scales of stellar radii and the innermost planet-forming regions of disks, which is not possible with direct imaging. You will gain skills in spectroscopy data analysis, Python programming, and statistics. Contact supervisor: Dr Aurora Sicilia-Aguilar (

Models of the evolution of stellar magnetism and coronae, including the solar-stellar connection. This project involves numerical modelling of high-energy stellar activity, from newly-born to solar-age stars, informed by the latest stellar magnetism and X-ray observations. You will gain skills in theoretical astrophysics, numerical modelling, and programming. Contact supervisors: Dr Scott Gregory ( and Dr Karen Meyer (

Applicants must have obtained, or expect to obtain, a UK honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent for non-UK qualifications), and/or a Master’s degree in Physics, Astrophysics, or Mathematics. The position is funded for 3 years (with a possible extension to 3.5 years) by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC). Candidates must be a UK national or have settled status. Start date is September 2021, although there is some flexibility to start in Autumn 2021.

More details can be found: to the full article

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Solar Physics PhD opportunities at Mullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London

The Department of Space & Climate Physics, University College London
is based at Mullard Space Science Laboratory
(, located in the
beautiful Surrey countryside. We are currently accepting applications
for several STFC studentships commencing in September 2021.

The studentships are available for specific PhD projects in
Astrophysics, Solar Physics, Plasma Physics and Planetary Science,
listed at
We strongly encourage potential applicants to contact prospective
supervisors to discuss the research project before they apply.

The deadlines for the UK students to apply for our STFC studentships is 4th June 2021. For more information, please see

The Department of Space and Climate Physics is an Institute of
Physics’ Juno Practitioner, which recognises and celebrates good
employment practices for women working in higher education and
research. UCL has a Silver Athena SWAN award from the Equality
Challenge Unit (ECU), and a Bronze award under ECU’s new Race Equality
Charter for higher education. to the full article

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12 Early-Stage Researcher positions open in Space Weather Awareness Training Network (SWATNet)

The Space Weather Awareness Training Network (SWATNet) is a Marie – Sklodowska – Curie Action Innovative Training Network (ITN) project. The project aims at breakthroughs in our physical understanding of the key agents of Space Weather.

We are now in the process of hiring 12 Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs) to pursue their PhD degrees. The project is funded by the European Commission under the framework of the Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks Programme, Grant Agreement No 955620.

SWATNet educates 12 PhD students in the field of heliophysics with training led by experienced supervisors in a  challenging, inherently international and interdisciplinary research environment. The consortium consists of nine Parties from eight European countries, as well as several recognized companies in the field. The PhD projects focus on analysing and forecasting solar activity, solar eruptions and energetic particles  accelerated by these eruptions. Students will use state-of-the-art observations and research techniques, including cutting-edge numerical simulations of the solar corona and the inner heliosphere, as well as machine learning analysis methods.  All students will be introduced to the basics of solar observations at our partner observatory and conduct 1-3 months of industrial training. The ITN provides a very competitive salary and additional mobility and family allowances

The positions are limited to a duration of 36 months and they are full-time. This period includes an obligatory 6-12 month period of project related work (i.e., Secondment) in another SWATNet host country. The positions may be extended according to national regulations and depending on the availability of additional funds. Students do not need to defend their thesis during the project, but must be enrolled in a doctoral programme leading to the award of joint/double doctoral degrees.

The deadline of the applications is 7 May 2021 [at 23:59 local time at the host]. The application period may however vary due to the local university rules/times, see the project descriptions

See the eligibility, selection criteria, project descriptions and instructions how to apply from to the full article

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