I am currently seeking a PhD student for a 3.5-year program starting in September 2020. The student will plan and carry out astronomical observations and use these and archival observations to improve our theoretical understanding. A brief description of the project:
Measuring gravity and accretion using pulsars
Neutron stars are extremely dense cinders remaining after stellar explosions. They often have strong magnetic fields and rotate rapidly, and this combination often results in their appearing to pulsate with extreme regularity. We call these objects “pulsars”, and their measurable rotation provides an opportunity to take precision measurements in some of the most extreme astrophysical environments accessible to observation. This project will use existing observations and request and carry out new observations of pulsar systems. These observations will strongly constrain theoretical models of how matter falls onto neutron stars, and in fact probe the details of how gravity works – does it behave as Einstein predicted?
Advisor: Dr Anne Archibald.
At the moment the funding covers only British and EU students. The application deadline is 2020 January 31. Please see the full application page for details and how to apply.
You may also be interested in the position in observational cosmology offered by my colleague Dr. Danielle Leonard.