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PhD studies with the Astrophysics Research Institute
Interested in pursuing a phd.
If you are interested in undertaking a PhD project, we encourage potential students to contact staff in their fields of interest.
The majority of students will follow a 3.5 year full-time route leading to the award of PhD. Studentships are generally funded by either the Science and Technology Facilities Council, or internally from our own research funds. We currently take in five to six new students per year.
Find out all the details on the PhD admissions process .
Our PhD students
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- Undergraduate Degree
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PhD Positions: applications for LJMU's VC scholarships are open!
LJMU offers 20 scholarships for PhDs starting in February 2024. The scholarships are for 3 years, and are open to international applicants. This is an LJMU-wide competition, and scholarships will be awarded based on the merit of the candidate and the project area.
The deadline to send an application to LJMU is July 31st 2023, and the application has to be submitted by an LJMU staff member on behalf of the candidate. All the information is here . If you are interested in applying, we recommend getting in touch with staff in your fields of interest to discuss PhD projects as soon as possible. You can also have a look at our current list of potential PhD projects here .
Informal enquiries may be made to Dr. Marie Martig ([email protected]).
Some of our postgraduates:
Supervisor: Ian G. McCarthy, Rob Crain
I did my bachelor and master degree in Bologna (Italy). My master thesis was about gas rotation in massive galaxy clusters. Currently, I am working with the cosmology - galaxy formation group in constraining cosmological parameters using simulated galaxy clusters from the BAHAMAS simulations. I am also part of the Liv.DAT, a joint project between University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University in a cohort of PhD projects in physics field with interest, also, in big data science. Outside of my job I am interested in sports, music and technology.
Other Links: Personal Webpage , @alberto_acuto , ResearchGate , Linkedin
Supervisor: Shiho Kobayashi, David Bersier
I did my undergrad in the joint astrophysics course between LJMU and UoL and stuck around here in Liverpool to do my PhD, now I work with Shiho Kobayashi to model binary stars around massive black holes producing hypervelocity stars. I use code I've developed to simulate orbits using a restricted 3 body problem to evolve the binary orbits. so far in my PhD I've been to Italy, Scotland, Wales and all over England for conferences and workshops. I am one of the PhD student reps on the ARI equality and diversity committee where I work to help improve diversity and representation within our department and within space science in general. Most of my free time is spent playing Dungeons and Dragons, and advocating of LGBT issues (My pronouns are She/Her). I am also making my own tabletop roleplaying game about pirates.
Other Links: @Hattieinspace
Supervisor: Steve Longmore, Nathan Bastian
Following my undergrad in St Andrews and my Masters abroad (AstroMundus), I now find myself here in the lovely city of Liverpool. For my PhD I am working on observations of stellar clusters (from star forming H II regions to globular clusters) to learn about their kinematics, and I then compare the results to simulations.
I am often guilty of doing too much, I was on the local organising committee for EWASS (the largest European astronomy and space science conference) and one of my biggest passions is outreach. For more than 8 years I have been involved with the International Astronomical Youth Camp (IAYC), helping to organise the camps as well as being on the board. I recently carried out a large-scale survey and presented the results at the Communicating Astronomy with the Public conference in Japan (with the support of the RAS and IOP).
If I'm not spending all of my free time doing outreach then you can often find me travelling or trying to explore of all the exciting and interesting things that Liverpool has to offer (endless exhibitions, festivals, concerts, gigs, plays, ...). I also love spending time in nature and enjoy all the parks, beaches and woodland that surrounds the city.
Other Links: @astro_hsd , Personal webpage
Supervisor: Marie Martig
My research focuses on Galactic archeology, meaning the past and evolution of the Milky Way. In particular, I am really interested on the morphology, structure, and stellar populations of thick disks of galaxies, and how they are influenced by the galaxy's formation history. Therefore, my project consists on using numerical simulations to explore the connection between the formation history of a galaxy and the structure of its thick disk (in particular, the potential existence of a radial age gradient). Then, I will use Gaia data combined with information from spectroscopic surveys like APOGEE-2 and WEAVE to map the age structure and kinematics of the Milky Way’s thick disk. This should lead to a new understanding of the mechanisms driving the formation of thick disks, and to a better characterisation of the Milky Way’s history. As for when I am not doing Astrophysics, I quite like playing music and go social dancing.
Other Links: @enjutillo
Supervisor: Rob Crain, Ian McCarthy
Galaxy Formation and Evolution , Computational & Theoretical Galaxy Formation
Hailing from Leeds, West Yorkshire, I did my undergraduate degree at Durham University. I work with Rob Crain and Ian McCarthy to use hydrodynamical simulations to assess the systematics that will influence radio weak lensing surveys. The code I have written measures the shapes and orientations of the gas, stars and dark matter of the galaxies that populate the EAGLE simulation. I am part of the LIVDAT initiative between Liverpool John Moores University and the University of Liverpool, aimed at teaching particle physicists and astronomers methods in handling and analysing big data. In my free time, I enjoy taking part in sports (rugby and bouldering are my current favourites) and exploring Snowdonia. I am slowly reading my way through the contents of an increasingly encumbered bookshelf, and honing my bread baking skills, learning by attempting (read: failing) to reproduce each of Paul Hollywood’s 100 Great Breads.
Other Links: Personal Webpage
Supervisor: Marie Martig and Nate Bastian
I did my undergraduate degree through the joint Astrophysics degree between the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University. I am now doing a PhD at the ARI at LJMU with Marie Martig and Nate Bastian, using the globular clusters as tracers for galaxy formation. I work closely with Dr Joel Pfeffer using the E-MOSAICS simulations to relate the properties of globular clusters to their parent galaxy properties and compare this with observables to see what we can infer about the build up of local group galaxies. I spend my weekends walking in various places around the UK.
Supervisor: Ian McCarthy, Andreea Font
Galaxy Formation and Evolution , Star Formation and Stellar Populations
My work is focused on the area of galaxy evolution and, specifically, the role of environment. Galaxies are observed to shut down their star formation (a process called quenching) quicker in dense regions of the universe (groups, clusters) compared to their counterparts in the 'field'. Despite extensive effort, the exact processes responsible for this effect are still not known. I am implementing statistical methods in order to take advantage of recent large-area surveys of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter in order to overcome the observational limitations and determine the dominant galaxy quenching processes. I spend a lot of my time making all-sky maps of galaxy properties, computing statistics which quantify the similarity between maps, and relating them to the underlying physics through cosmological simulations. Like this project, my interests extend from galaxy formation and evolution to broader areas of cosmology.
Supervisor: Maurizio Salaris, Nate Bastian, Steve Longmore
I am studying theoretical modelling of stellar interiors by implementing new chemical transport processes into a computational stellar model (BaSTI), for different types of stars, and analysing the effects of these processes on current theoretical predictions, such as stellar ages/lifetimes and metallicities, and observable properties, such as atmospheric composition.
Supervisor: Nate Bastian, Maurizio Salaris
I am originally from Rome, Italy, where I did my undergrad and master’s degrees in Astronomy and Astrophysics at “Università La Sapienza”. My PhD at LJMU is focussed on two major problems in our understanding of globular clusters. The first is the origin of their distinctive chemical patterns between stars, i.e. “multiple populations”. The second is how they relate to the young massive clusters observed in nearby starburst galaxies. During my PhD, I have presented my work in a number of international conferences and I also travelled to the ESO Paranal Observatory as a visitor observer. Among my hobbies, I have a great passion for travelling and photography and I also like to spend some time learning new languages.
Supervisor: Dr Ben Davies & Dr Emma Beasor
I did my MPhys degree through the joint Astrophysics programme between the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University. I am now currently a 3rd year PhD student at the ARI working with Dr Ben Davies and Dr Emma Beasor on massive stellar evolution in the Red Supergiant (RSG) phase. In particular, looking at the Humphreys-Davidson limit and RSG mass-loss rates. Outside of Astrophysics, I love travelling/visiting different countries, going to gigs, walking my dog and watching Aston Villa.
Other Links: Linkedin
Supervisor: Andreea Font and Ian McCarthy
Computational & Theoretical Galaxy Formation
I'm currently studing for my PhD as part of the Liverpool Big Data Science (LIVDAT) Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT), based at Liverpool John Moores University, in conjuction with the University of Liverpool. My research is focused on using large-scale cosmological simulations of the universe (EAGLE) and will focus on implementing self-consistent annihilation simulations of dark matter.
Other Links: Persnal Webpage
Supervisor: Iain Steele, Chris Copperwheat, Paul Fergus
I was born in the US in 1968 and moved to the UK in 1995 as an Irish citizen. I’m a former English teacher and for many years made a living as a novelist. Over time, writing for money wasn’t working out, so in 2011 I started studying physics and maths with the Open University, which led to a BSc and then an MSc in Astrophysics with the ARI's first cohort of part-time distance learning students. I’m now a member of LIV.DAT, a joint program between LJMU and UoL to train the next generation of data scientists. My PhD is with Iain Steele. The aim is to characterise active galactic nuclei (AGN) by their optical variability over time in large-scale surveys like the upcoming Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST). I plan to use Liverpool Telescope photometry to develop a machine learning algorithm to explore relationships between emissions variability and parameters such as mass, luminosity, and merger history. I’m also doing a little work on Boyajian’s star, also known as ‘The WTF Star’ (where’s the flux?) to try to understand its mysterious long-term dimming. I have three kids in school/college in Shropshire, so I commute to Liverpool. Therefore most of my spare time is spent sleeping! I enjoy running ineptly, and I have a not-so-inept background in full-contact martial arts, but nowadays to save my ancient joints I try to avoid hitting things unless I’m really mad.
Other Links: @ingutterlooking
Supervisor: Steve Longmore, Ivan Baldry, Paulo Lisboa, Lee Kelvin, Chris Collins
I did my undergraduate degree in Astrophysics here in Liverpool and stayed on for my PhD. My team and I use unsupervised clustering algorithms to explore galaxy feature data. We have applied the k-means algorithm to a sample of ~7000 galaxies from the GAMA survey. Our approach to clustering enables us to identify stable, meaningful structure in the data we use to describe the galaxies. We represent the galaxies using five features that tell us about the way the galaxies have formed and are evolving. Interpretation of the clustering structure reveals new perspectives on the established bimodality of galaxies and confirms recent ideas about the role of environment in galaxy evolution. Besides my research, I mostly enjoy sport. I like to swim, cycle, run, and play racket sports, especially squash. I am the current president of the LJMU Squash Club.
Other Links: @sebturne
Department of Physics
As a well-funded, influential member of the international physics research community, we can offer you a fantastic undergraduate education.
Our 3-year BSc programme is aligned with a wide range of careers and offers numerous options, including those which are industry-specific such as Nuclear Science or Medical Physics.
Alternatively, our 4 year MPhys programme directly leads to a Masters qualification and is ideal if you are planning a career as a professional research physicist.
Physics UG brochure
We also offer several specialised courses which may better reflect your interests and career ambitions.
- Physics BSc (Hons) UCAS code: F300
- Physics MPhys UCAS code: F303
- Physical Sciences entry route leading to BSc (Hons) (4 year route including a Foundation Year at Carmel College) UCAS code: F308
- Physics with Astronomy BSc (Hons) UCAS code: F3F5
- Astrophysics MPhys UCAS code: F521
- Physics with Medical Applications BSc (Hons) UCAS code: F350
- Physics with Nuclear Science BSc (Hons) UCAS code: F390
Why study with us?
Physics is the fundamental science that covers the smallest to the largest scales and by studying it we have made everything from the microchip to space flight possible. With a physics degree you will have the skills to understand, take measurements, make predictions and create new methods in any walk of life you chose to go into.
All of our existing degree programmes are IOP accredited and cover classical and modern physics topics, and also include modules in mathematics, computing and experimental physics.
Our research and teaching laboratories are world-class and include the new, state-of-the-art central teaching hub .
Study with world-leading scientists
As a member of our community, you will be taught by internationally renowned physicists who are pursuing frontier research.
There are exciting opportunities to undertake projects and gain experience in Liverpool and at our partner institutes worldwide.
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Physics (4 years) MPhys University of Liverpool
Key course facts, student reviews.
Below you can see course specific reviews for 40 graduates of Physics MPhys at University of Liverpool for each of the survey questions in comparison to the average for all UK degree courses in Physics.
Salary of Graduates in Physics
Important: Salary data below is not course specific, but contains data of all students of Physics at the university. Due to data collection methodology, salary data is mainly based on data related to undergraduate students .
Salary of all UK Graduates of Physics
This programme is intended for those considering a career as a professional physicist in fundamental research or industrial research and development. It covers a wider range of topics than the Physics BSc and provides more research experience. The Department has an excellent track record of securing PhD studentships and, as a consequence, our graduates have a good opportunity to study higher degrees spanning the whole of physics. The research-led teaching will provide a core of experience that will make you an excellent researcher and also prepare you to excel in many other professions.
This programme is accredited by the Institute of Physics (IOP) for the purpose of fully meeting the educational requirement for Chartered Physicist.
Work placement/Year in industry - Students are encouraged to gain relevant work experience to enhance their employability by applying for a summer internship or a year placement with an approved company/organisation. Whilst the Department of Physics and the University will provide the necessary support and guidance, it is the responsibility of the student to secure an industrial placement. Applicants should note that industrial placements are highly sought after and competition to be accepted into one can be significant. They therefore cannot be guaranteed. Students who fail to secure a suitable placement offer will transfer back to the standard version of the programme without a year in industry. If you wish to study this programme with a Year in Industry please put the option code YI in the Further Choices section of your UCAS application form.
This programme is available with a Year in China. The Year in China allows undergraduate students the opportunity to spend one year at our joint venture, Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU), following XJTLU's BA China Studies degree classes. XJTLU is a fully English-speaking university, located in Suzhou. If you wish to study this programme with a Year in China please put the option code YC in the Further Choices section of your UCAS application form.
Accredited by the Institute of Physics (IOP) for the purpose of fully meeting the educational requirement for Chartered Physicist.
Jobs & Career Perspectives
15 months after graduation, graduates of this course were asked about what they do and, if they are working, about their current job and their perspectives.
What graduates are doing after 15 months
Current jobs, job in line with future plans, utilise skills from studies, work is meaningful, required skill level of job after 15 months, % skilled jobs, jobs of graduates of this course (15 months after graduation).
Example below based on all graduates of Physics MPhys at University of Liverpool
Grading & Study Time
Assessment methods, study time distribution, entry requirements / admissions, minimum required ucas tariff, ucas tariff of accepted students for this course, qualification requirements.
Including Physics and Mathematics . For applicants from England: Where a science has been taken at A level (Chemistry, Biology or Physics), a pass in the science practical of each subject will be required.
Including Physics and Mathematics.
Applicants who offer the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and meet our offer criteria will be made the standard offer, plus an alternative offer. This will be at one A Level grade lower plus a grade A in the EPQ, for example the offer would be AAB or ABB plus A in the EPQ, including Physics and Mathematics.
35 including 6 in Higher Level Physics and 6 in Higher Level Mathematics.
Applications considered alongside A levels. Please contact the University for further information.
H1, H1, H2, H2, H2, H3 including Physics and Mathematics at H2 or above.
Accepted including two A levels at AA (including Physics and Mathematics)
Requirements for international students / English requirements
IELTS academic test score (similar tests may be accepted as well)
- All Degrees
UCAS International Information
Average student cost of living in the uk.
London costs approx 34% more than average, mainly due to rent being 67% higher than average of other cities. For students staying in student halls, costs of water, gas, electricity, wifi are generally included in the rental. Students in smaller cities where accommodation is in walking/biking distance transport costs tend to be significantly smaller.
How to apply
January 1, 2024
This is the deadline for applications to be completed and sent for this course. If the university or college still has places available you can apply after this date, but your application is not guaranteed to be considered.
Possible Entry Points:
- year 1 (Default entry point)
Positions of university of liverpool in top uk and global rankings., rankings of university of liverpool in related subject specific rankings., natural sciences, about university of liverpool.
The University of Liverpool is a government funded university found in the city of Liverpool, England. It is one of the universities that founded the Russell Group, the N8 Group which is a partnership of the eight most research-intensive universities in Northern England. The majority of the university’s activities take place in a single urban campus just a five minute’s walk from Liverpool City Centre.
List of 656 Bachelor and Master Courses from University of Liverpool - Course Catalogue
Student composition of University of Liverpool
Where is this programme taught.
Ranking publishers, the university league tables, (published: 08 june, 2023).
THE Times Higher Education, UK
(published: 26 october, 2022), british quacquarelli symonds, uk, (published: 22 march, 2023), the guardian news and media limited, (published: 09 september, 2023), shanghairanking consultancy, (published: 19 july, 2022), (published: 22 july, 2023), ntu ranking, (published: 11 july, 2023).
Finland: PhD position in Computational Physics and Inverse Problems Research Group
The University of Eastern Finland is inviting applications for two Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) positions in Computational Physics and Inverse Problems Research Group at the Department of Technical Physics on the Kuopio campus. The position will be filled for a fixed term from 1 January 2024 (or starting date as agreed) to 31 December 2025. Please find more information below and submit your application no later than 17 November 2023.
Role and salary
We are seeking for two highly motivated and talented Doctoral Researchers (PhD students) to work full-time in the field of computational imaging and scientific computing with the Centre of Excellence in Inverse Modeling and Imaging (Research Council of Finland) and Consolidator Grant of European Research Council (ERC). Group invites prospective PhD student candidates to apply for the positions, which will involve research on one of the following topics:
- Tomographic multimodal imaging of three-phase flow
- Quantitative photoacoustic tomography
- Diffuse optical tomography
- Accelerated model-based multiple contrast quantitative MRI
- Computational methods for enhancing quantitative cardiac imaging with novel digital 3D SPECT systems
- Monitoring of fugitive greenhouse gas emissions in biogas production using laser dispersion tomography
For more information and detailed descriptions of the PhD topics 1-6 can be found here . The Doctoral Researchers (PhD students) are requested to indicate the preferred projects (one or more) in their motivation letter attached to the application.
Research Group webpages: https://sites.uef.fi/inverse/
The positions will be filled for a fixed term from 1 January 2024 to 31 December 2025 (or starting date as agreed) due to it pertaining to a specific project task and own doctoral degree. A probationary period is applied to all new members of the staff.
The candidate shall be qualified to pursue postgraduate studies at the University of Eastern Finland by enrolling in the Faculty's Doctoral Programme LUMETO .
The salary of the position is determined in accordance with the salary system of the Finnish universities. The salary comprises two components: a job requirement component and a personal performance component. In this position, the job requirement level is based on levels 2–4 on the job requirement chart for teaching and research staff, depending on the stage of the applicant's doctoral research and postgraduate studies. The personal performance salary element is 6–50% of the job-related salary element. At the beginning of the employment, the salary of the Doctoral Researcher will be approximately € 2534–2662 /month.
Our requirements and expectations
- A person to be appointed as a Doctoral Researcher shall be qualified to pursue postgraduate studies.
- Master’s degree or equivalent in physics, engineering, computer science or applied mathematics. Candidates who are currently completing or have recently completed a higher university degree are invited to apply.
- Potential candidates should have a good command of the English language (work language: English).
The following will be considered an advantage:
- Experience in inverse problems, mathematical modeling and related numerical methods.
- Strong interest in interdisciplinary scientific work (shown by a motivation letter).
- Programming skills with Matlab, C/C++ or Python.
You will have access to the university’s staff benefits, including:
- Extensive occupational health care
- Staff discount on lunch in our campus restaurants, as well as on a range of other services
- Affordable sports services and tax-free bike benefit
- Please read more in the Work at UEF section on our website
You will have an opportunity to work in an interesting and diverse role as part of our international, creative, participatory and inclusive academic community.
Enjoy your life in Finland! Known for its cleanliness, welfare know-how, modern technology and superb education system, Finland is an exotic and safe country to work in. Please visit the Life in Finland section on our website to learn more.
How to apply?
Submit your application by using our electronic application form no later than 17 November 2023 by 24:00 (midnight) Finnish time (UTC+3).
Please note that you must include the following appendices in your application:
- CV ( http://www.tenk.fi/en/template-researchers-curriculum-vitae , but also other styles will be accepted).
- List of publications, if applicable.
- Copies of your academic degree certificates/diplomas, and copies of certificates/diplomas relating to your language proficiency, if not indicated in the academic degree certificates/diplomas.
- A transcript of records.
- A motivation letter (max. 2 pages), including the preferred project(s) and names and contact information of two referees.
- Other documents you wish to include to demonstrate your merits for the position (maximum 3 pages). Do not attach MSc/BSc thesis PDF files, provide a link to them in your CV (if applicable).
For further information on the positions, please contact Professor Marko Vauhkonen, email: [email protected] , tel. +358 40 771 3737.
For further information on the application procedure, please contact Human Resources Coordinator Noora Hämäläinen, e-mail: [email protected] , tel. +358 29 445 8302.
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Pursuing purpose through physics
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Gary Wall, a 1970 CU Boulder physics graduate, won the Los Alamos Medal in recognition of more than 50 years of distinguished work at Los Alamos National Laboratory
During the summer of 1970, his first year working at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, Gary Wall was something of a hippie and wore a large peace sign pendant to work most days. He still has it, and there’s nothing subtle about it.
“I initially had reservations about working there,” Wall recalls of his graduate research assistant position at the physical and scientific home of the Manhattan Project. “I applied because my girlfriend at the time was from Los Alamos.”
However, it wasn’t very long before “I became convinced the nuclear deterrent is what is keeping us out of world wars,” he says. “The purpose of a nuclear deterrent is to keep the peace. I did struggle that first summer when I found out that I was going to be working in the nuclear weapons group—I struggled with whether that’s really what I wanted to do—but every day I learned more about how we’re supporting the work of protecting the country and protecting the world from a third world war, hopefully.”
Gary Wall accepts the Los Alamos Medal from Laboratory Director Thom Mason at a special awards ceremony. (Photo: Los Alamos National Laboratory)
Since that summer of 1970, a month after he graduated the University of Colorado Boulder with a bachelor’s degree in physics , Wall has become one of the most distinguished designers in the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) Weapons Physics group. In recognition of his more than 50 years of work, he won the Los Alamos Medal , the laboratory’s highest honor.
The Los Alamos Medal recognizes recipients who have made contributions that changed the course of science, made major enhancement to the laboratory’s ability to achieve its mission or established a major direction for the laboratory and the nation.
“All the fields in physics are challenging, and they’re stimulating,” Wall says. “National labs are great places to work, and physics is a great field. There are always new frontiers to investigate in physics, and even 50 years later, I’m still making discoveries in physics.”
A love for science
Growing up in Englewood, Colorado, Wall was always drawn to science—charting his own path in a family in which his father did construction and remodeling work and his mother was a homemaker. He joined his father on jobs during summer months and dove back into the solution-finding and figuring-things-out of science when he resumed classes at Englewood High School.
He won a Boettcher Scholarship —“the only way I could attend college, because we couldn’t have afforded it otherwise,” Wall says—and began classes at CU Boulder in 1965, studying physics and math. The math was to help him keep up with the physics, he says.
His junior year abroad in England explains why he graduated in 1970 instead of 1969, he says, “but it was a fun year out. It was really interesting to study American history from a British perspective and to study British literature in the country where it was written.”
After graduating, and encouraged by his girlfriend, Wall applied for and received a graduate research-assistant position at LANL. He thought it would just be for the summer, since an advisor at CU recommended he pursue graduate studies at a different university than where he completed his undergraduate work. So, in the fall of 1970, he headed to the University of Minnesota.
“I didn’t like the big city, and I definitely didn’t like six months of winter,” he says, so the following summer he headed back to Los Alamos, and that’s where he stayed. He earned his master’s degree in mathematics from the University of New Mexico in 1976.
Gary Wall running near his Los Alamos, New Mexico, home.
Balancing physics and engineering
In his undergraduate studies at CU, Wall had been fascinated with nuclear physics. As he learned in his second summer at LANL, and through the span of his five decades of work there, all areas of physics are involved in designing nuclear weapons—not just nuclear physics.
It’s a little difficult to describe what his work has entailed because the bulk of it is classified (Wall has a Q security clearance, the equivalent of top secret), “but the idea is that there is a requirement from the Department of Defense for some new weapon to go on some new delivery system and they set requirements for what they want,” Wall explains. “We take those requirements and put together ideas for what kind of device will meet them.
“Then, there’s a lot of physics design and engineering design to put together a device. Then, there’s a lot of testing of the function of the device, and at least until 1992 (when LANL conducted its last underground test at the Nevada Test Site), we’d go out to Nevada and do underground tests to verify that what we designed will work.”
On his first test at the Nevada Test Site, Wall was a junior member of the design team and had been tasked with writing a pre-shot report for a particular nuclear test his team had been working on. When it came time to do the test in Nevada, “I was on the spot having to say how well it was going to work,” he says. “As a junior member of the team, that was a lot of responsibility.”
Over the years, there were designs that didn’t work the way they were supposed to, but failures are also part of scientific learning, Wall says. As computer technology advanced, the LANL nuclear design group grew its capacities—using computer design calculations to look at variations and uncertainties. Plus, every design went through a battery of internal peer review and sometimes even inter-lab peer review with other national laboratories.
“The internal peer review was pretty intense, so that by the time we got to fielding tests in Nevada, we were reasonably confident that the design was sound,” Wall says.
“In this work, there’s physics and there’s engineering. We can design things in the computer, but then engineers have to figure out how to build it. It’s a give and take between the computer design and what can actually be built.
Gary Wall stands near the location of Divider, the last nuclear test before the current moratorium . (Photo: Los Alamos National Laboratory)
“The piece we do is called physics design, and we use all the different areas of physics that feed into the function of a nuclear weapon—codes, high explosives, hydrodynamics, material properties. Then, the design that gets finalized also has to meet requirements for being transported and actually being put on a delivery system, it has to meet environmental requirements. So, those are requirements we have to meet as well.”
Though Wall technically retired in 2018, he still works half-time when he and his wife aren’t traveling. In 2005, he was named a laboratory fellow in recognition of special achievement, so now his title is lab associate fellow. One of the things he relishes most in his position now is mentoring the next generation of scientists.
“Gary’s commitment to mentoring the next generation of nuclear weapons scientists is just as—if not more—impressive than his long list of accomplishments,” Bob Webster, deputy laboratory director for weapons at LANL, said in a statement about the award.
“Los Alamos Laboratory has been a wonderful place to learn to be a scientist,” Wall says. “The lab does a lot beyond weapons, so there’s lots of opportunity to focus on various aspects of physics and fielding experiments that focus on different parts of physics. It’s a place where I’m still learning.”
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Three CU Boulder profs win Boettcher Foundation awards
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Graduate Studies Program – Institute for Shock Physics
Department of Chemistry
Email: [email protected]
Rieke Science Center Tacoma, WA 98447
- College of Natural Sciences
Washington state university.
The Institute for Shock Physics is a multidisciplinary research organization within the College of Arts and Sciences at Washington State University. Institute faculty participants from the Colleges of Arts and Sciences and Engineering and Architecture study the response of materials at extreme conditions. Students from various academic departments can carry out research projects for Ph.D. degrees at the Institute. Students affiliated with the Departments of Physics and Astronomy, Chemistry, Mechanical and Materials Engineering, and the Material Science and Engineering Program are encouraged to explore the research opportunities within the Institute.
Learn more at: https://shock.wsu.edu/
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Qualification, university name, phd degree at university of liverpool.
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School of histories, languages and cultures, university of liverpool.
- 2 years Full time degree: £4,712 per year (UK)
- 4 years Part time degree: £2,356 per year (UK)
Comparative Literature PhD
Management phd, university of liverpool management school, irish studies phd, egyptology phd, classics and ancient history phd, archives and records management phd, economics phd, politics phd, italian phd, history phd, accounting and finance phd, film studies phd, sociolinguistics phd, translation studies phd, latin american studies phd, modern languages phd, hispanic studies phd.
1-20 of 90 courses
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