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UCD School of Physics and UCD School of Mathematics will host the Irish Quantum Foundations Conference 2017UCD School of Physics and UCD School of Mathematics will host the Irish Quantum Foundations Conference 2017 (26/04/2017)

Irish Quantum Foundations is an annual conference for the theoretical physics community in Ireland and presents the year's most exciting developments internationally and within Ireland. UCD will host the conference in 2017 on May 25th and 26th during which the annual O'Raifeartaigh lecture will be given. A public lecture describing the recent LIGO discovery of gravitational waves will take place in the Moore auditorium at 6:30pm on Thursday, May 25th. More information is available from the conference webpage: http://maths.ucd.ie/iqf2017/


Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics 2017Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics 2017 (30/03/2017)

UCD School of Physics is proud to announce a scheme of advanced research awards. These awards underline UCD’s commitment to research excellence and to attract and retain the very best scholars. Applications are welcome for candidates wishing to apply for a PhD and MSc by research within UCD School of Physics. Scholarships are awarded subject to the attached terms and conditions. Closing Date: 28th April 2017, 5pm.


Astrophysics PhD position working on supernovae available in University College Dublin.Astrophysics PhD position working on supernovae available in University College Dublin. (09/02/2017)

Applications are invited for a four year PhD studentship, starting in Sept/Oct 2017. The project will entail using observational data from world-class observatories to understand the final stages in the life of a massive star.


UCD Parity Studios Artist in Residence, Siobhan McDonald, has recently launched her new exhibition, Crystalline, at the Centre Cultural Irlandais, Paris.UCD Parity Studios Artist in Residence, Siobhan McDonald, has recently launched her new exhibition, Crystalline, at the Centre Cultural Irlandais, Paris. (23/02/2017)

Crystalline is the product of Siobhan’s research and collaboration between Parity Studios and the UCD School of Physics which began in 2013 and has culminated in an expedition to the Article Circle and visits to the European Space Agency.


Upcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2017 - Open for ApplicationsUpcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2017 - Open for Applications (26/01/2017)

How would you like to get your hands on real LHC data and analyse it to find W & Z bosons, and look for evidence of the Higgs? UCD School of Physics is offering you the chance! Applications are now open for the International Particle Physics Masterclass 2017.


UCD Astrophysicist Dr. Morgan Fraser's research on superluminous supernova leads to a surprising discovery: the death of a star that passed too close to a supermassive black holeUCD Astrophysicist Dr. Morgan Fraser's research on superluminous supernova leads to a surprising discovery: the death of a star that passed too close to a supermassive black hole (13/12/2016)

Black holes are some of the most mysterious objects in the Universe, and also some of the hardest to observe. An international collaboration of astronomers, including Dr. Morgan Fraser from UCD, recently observed a flare at the centre of a distant galaxy. This flare resulted from an unlucky star falling into a supermassive black hole, and being torn apart by the immense gravitational field in a "Tidal Disruption Event". The flare, which at it's brightest was more than 1000 billion times more luminous than the Sun, was observed with the Hubble Space Telescope, and at the European Southern Observatory in Chile.


Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening, 8th November 2016Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening, 8th November 2016 (18/10/2016)

The UCD School of Physics invites prospective students, teachers, parents and guardians to our Open Evening on Tuesday, the 8th of November in the Science Centre, UCD. The evening begins at 6pm.


Applications now open for the UCD Physics Transition Year Week 2016!Applications now open for the UCD Physics Transition Year Week 2016! (19/09/2016)

UCD School of Physics is excited to announce that applications are now being accepted for Ireland's foremost Transition Year Student Programme.The UCD Physics Transition Year Week runs over a 5 day period, from Monday 5th to Friday 9th December 2016, and will include an exciting programme of stimulating interactive seminars, thought-provoking lectures, fun experiments, and exciting field trips that allow students to experience Physics in the real world.


Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics 2016Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics 2016 (29/08/2016)

UCD School of Physics is proud to announce a scheme of advanced research awards. These awards underline UCD’s commitment to research excellence and to attract and retain the very best scholars. Applications are welcome for candidates wishing to apply for a PhD and MSc by research within UCD School of Physics. Scholarships are awarded subject to the attached terms and conditions. Closing Date: 9th September 2016 (Friday @ 5pm).


UCD School of Physics Spin-Out Secures €3 million in Horizon 2020 FundingUCD School of Physics Spin-Out Secures €3 million in Horizon 2020 Funding (26/08/2016)

SiriusXT (www.siriusxt.com), a spin-out company from University College Dublin’s (UCD) School of Physics, has secured €3 million in the latest round of Horizon 2020 SME Instrument Phase 2 funding.


UCD Physics Summer Internship Poster CompetitionUCD Physics Summer Internship Poster Competition (29/07/2016)

UCD School of Physics held its annual Summer Internship Poster Competition yesterday, 28th July 2016. Each year the School hosts interns from institutions in Ireland and abroad, with eighteen students completing the programme this year. Internship topics ranged from experimental to theoretical, across numerous research groups. Additionally, some students’ projects were designed to enhance lab-based experiments taken by our undergraduate students throughout the academic year.


MSc Space Science & Technology student Cillian Byrne shares his internship experience (and has lunch with astronauts!)MSc Space Science & Technology student Cillian Byrne shares his internship experience (and has lunch with astronauts!) (22/07/2016)

UCD Physics student Cillian Byrne shares his experience of interning at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Germany as part of the MSc in Space Science & Technology. Cillian is working on the Spaceship EAC project which is laying the foundations of research for ESA's future Moon Village and he has even had the opportunity to meet ESA astronaut Tim Peake after his return from 6 months on the International Space Station.


Thomas Preston Scholarship Fund Formally Launched at Physics 52Thomas Preston Scholarship Fund Formally Launched at Physics 52 (12/07/2016)

Prof. Padraig Dunne formally launched a call for founding donors for the Thomas Preston Scholarship Fund at Physics 52 – our annual alumni event commemorating 52 years of Physics at UCD Belfield. Through the fund, the UCD School of Physics hopes to support talented students through their PhD in fundamental physics, thereby growing our vibrant community of physicists at the leading edge of teaching and research. Currently, the School’s most pressing need is funding for this type of scholarship.


Free OSA Webinar on Free OSA Webinar on "What can we learn from high-resolution retinal imaging" (04/03/2016)

Dr. Brian Vohnsen, Senior Lecturer at the UCD School of Physics, is hosting a 1 hour webinar on "What can we learn from high-resolution retinal imaging?" which will take place on Monday March 7th at 12:00 PM Eastern Time (5:00 PM GMT).


This Week - Celebrating 52 Years of Physics at UCD BelfieldThis Week - Celebrating 52 Years of Physics at UCD Belfield (05/07/2016)

Join us on Thursday July 7th 2016 at 5pm for an evening of topical physics talks, conversation and a reception. Short lectures will begin at 6pm in the Moore Auditorium, O'Brien Centre for Science. Lectures in the new O'Brien Centre for Science will be followed by a reception (from 7.30pm) in the old first year labs of the School of Physics, Science Centre North.


UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2016 - Applications now open!UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2016 - Applications now open! (14/03/2016)

The School of Physics is offering a number of Summer Internships in 2016. Students at all undergraduate levels are encouraged to apply, but priority will be given to those in their penultimate year. The program is not restricted to UCD students.


Summer School for the University of CaliforniaSummer School for the University of California (03/09/2015)

During the Summer of 2015 the UCD School of Physics hosted 82 undergraduates from different campuses of the University of California for an 8-week intensive programme of Physics. The course, which meets the undergraduate requirement for physics in programmes in the Life Sciences, comprised of lectures, tutorials, laboratories and office hours with academic staff. Many of the students on the course are aiming to progress to graduate programmes in Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Neuroscience and Biochemistry, among others. We look forward to hosting the UC programme in 2016 at the O’Brien Centre for Science.


Nanoscale Tailored Plasmonic Material for Optimum Broadband Solar HarvestingNanoscale Tailored Plasmonic Material for Optimum Broadband Solar Harvesting (10/03/2016)

UCD School of Physics, Plasmonics and Ultrafast Nanooptics Researchers, Dominic Zerulla and Éadaoin Ilten, have achieved a breakthrough in next generation solar energy harvesting.


UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2017 - Applications now open!UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2017 - Applications now open! (16/03/2017)

UCD School of Physics is proud to announce that applications for UCD Physics Summer Internships 2017 are now open. Students at all undergraduate levels are encouraged to apply, but priority will be given to those in their penultimate year. The program is not restricted to UCD students so please make an application if you are interested.


UCD Researcher Features on ACS Front PageUCD Researcher Features on ACS Front Page (13/05/2016)

In this paper, featured on the cover of the February 2016 issue of ACS Sustainable Chemistry & Engineering, Antonio Benedetto (Adjunct Research Fellow at the UCD School of Physics and Marie-Curie Fellow at the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland) and Pietro Ballone (Italian Institute of Technology) briefly review experimental and computational studies of room temperature ionic liquids interacting with important classes of biomolecules, including phospholipids, peptides and proteins, nucleic acids and carbohydrates. Their study is set to open new avenues of discovery and applications in biochemistry, biomedicine and pharmacology, food science and nanotechnology.


New Nature Publication from Dr Andrew Mitchell New Nature Publication from Dr Andrew Mitchell "Kondo blockade due to quantum interference in single-molecule junctions" (11/05/2017)

A new paper published in the leading open-access journal Nature Communications by the theoretical nanoelectronics group of Dr Andrew Mitchell at UCD. The new research shows that these devices can harness exotic quantum mechanical effects to provide advanced functionality, such as highly efficient and low-energy 'quantum interference effect transistors'.


PhD Studentships in Biophysics are available - Apply NowPhD Studentships in Biophysics are available - Apply Now (22/12/2016)

Two PhD positions now available with UCD Physics in the framework of a Science Foundation Ireland SIRG award. Each studentship is for 3 years, with a potential extension for 1 extra year. The two PhD projects are based at the School of Physics, University College Dublin. They are in the field of biophysics and are focused on the interaction of biosystems (like proteins and biomembranes) with a new class of organic salts known as Room-Temperature Ionic Liquids(RTIL). This is a new and promising field of studies that offers a good balance of challenges andfuture job opportunities, both in Academia and in Industry.


UCD Physics Images Competition 2016UCD Physics Images Competition 2016 (11/03/2016)

Would you like to display your talent, give others an insight into your research, show the ‘behind the scenes’ view of Physics? Enter our UCD Physics Images Competition 2016! Capture your own unique experience and show us what inspires you as a UCD Physics student/member of staff. Whether it’s your workspace or labs, the friends and colleagues you work with or the Physics community you belong to, we would love to see what UCD Physics means to you through your images.


LIGO live: Inside the hunt for gravitational wavesLIGO live: Inside the hunt for gravitational waves (11/02/2016)

On Thursday, 11 February, 2016, the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) is giving a “status report” on its effort to detect gravitational waves - ripples in space-time that, according to predictions by Albert Einstein 100 years ago, are produced by cataclysmic cosmic events such as the merging of two black holes. LIGO is widely expected to announce that it has made the first ever direct detection of gravitational waves. In anticipation of this exciting announcement, the UCD School of Physics invites you to the Physics Common Room (Rm. 134 Science Centre North) to view the live streaming of the press conference from Washington DC, starting at 15:30 GMT. http://www.ligo.org/news/media-advisory.php


Upcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 - Open for ApplicationsUpcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 - Open for Applications (19/01/2016)

Applications for the UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 are now open. This is a great chance for a future physicists to get their hands on real LHC data and analyse it to find W & Z bosons. Please note that the masterclass is open to 5th and 6th year Leaving Certificate students, with a keen interest in Physics. Transition Year students are happily invited to apply but priority weighting in selection will be given to students sitting the Leaving Certificate.


New UCD Physics Opportunities: PhD or MSc (by Research) projects for IRC, SIRAT, CSC China, Brazil scholarships.New UCD Physics Opportunities: PhD or MSc (by Research) projects for IRC, SIRAT, CSC China, Brazil scholarships. (22/12/2015)

PhD or MSc (by Research) projects for IRC, SIRAT, CSC China, Brazil scholarships. The UCD School of Physics is interested in attracting exceptional candidates for PhD or MSc (by Research). To assist (early) applications, we are pleased to attach a list of possible projects for you to consider applying to. The list, while not exhaustive, points candidates to research groups actively keen to recruit the right candidates in 2016. Additionally it points prospective post-grads directly to the supervisors, should student/supervisor collaboration be required for applications.


UCD School of Physics welcomes you to a prospective postgraduate event. UCD School of Physics welcomes you to a prospective postgraduate event. (22/12/2015)

UCD School of Physics welcomes you to a prospective postgraduate event. UCD Physics will host an event on Thursday 28th January 2016 in the Physics Common Room from 5-7pm. This event is will have an emphasis on all of our Taught MSc programmes within the school, and research groups looking to take on PhD students in 2016.


VERITAS Detection of VHE gamma-ray emission from the distant blazar PKS 1441+25VERITAS Detection of VHE gamma-ray emission from the distant blazar PKS 1441+25 (17/12/2015)

The UCD High Energy Astrophysics group is a member of the VERITAS Collaboration and its current team of Dr. John Quinn, Dr. Elisa Pueschel and Ph.D. students Eddie Collins-Hughes, Yerbol Khassen, and Stephan O’Brien are actively involved in the study of quasars and blazars with VERITAS. In a joint press release with NASA and MAGIC, VERITAS reports the detection of VHE gamma-rays from the distant (z=0.939) blazar PKS 1441+25.


UCD Physics - Advanced Optical Imaging - Breakthrough published in OpticaUCD Physics - Advanced Optical Imaging - Breakthrough published in Optica (11/12/2015)

UCD Physics, Advanced Optical Imaging, Researchers Brian Vohnsen and Denise Valente, have found a way to overcome limitations and measure the wavefront distortions of light with a precision never before achieved. Their breakthrough sensor technology is based on a curious phenomenon: a quasiparticle that emerges when light waves couple with the electrons’ oscillations of certain solid surfaces. By measuring how efficiently incoming light creates these quasiparticles, the researchers are able to derive previously undetectable distortions in the wavefronts. “I am excited about the new sensor because it enables new pathways for nanoscale sensitivity for a whole host of applications,” said Vohnsen. “These amazingly fine measurements make it possible to extract wavefront information right at the point where air, light, and surfaces interact.” The results of this research are published in The Optical Society’s high-impact journal Optica.


Forthcoming Outreach: DEFYING GRAVITY:the physics of spaceflight by Laura Thomas in association with UCD Physics and IOP Institute of Physics Ireland.Forthcoming Outreach: DEFYING GRAVITY:the physics of spaceflight by Laura Thomas in association with UCD Physics and IOP Institute of Physics Ireland. (11/12/2015)

UCD Physics is excited to announce our forthcoming outreach event "DEFYING GRAVITY:the physics of spaceflight". The space industry is one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK and Ireland and young people today have a better chance than ever before of growing up to work in the area. This lecture by Laura Thomas ESERO (European Space Education Resource Office) space ambassador looks at how studying physics and maths could put your students on the fast track to a career in space.


Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2015Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2015 (30/10/2015)

The UCD School of Physics invites prospective students, teachers, parents and guardians to our Open Evening on Tuesday, the 3rd of November in the Science Centre, UCD. The evening begins at 6pm sharp. The event is free of charge.The evening will include talks on career paths from four physics graduates and one undergraduate about their experiences and where it has led them in their career-to-date.


Applications are now open for the UCD Physics Transition Year Week 2015Applications are now open for the UCD Physics Transition Year Week 2015 (21/09/2015)

UCD School of Physics is excited to announce that applications are now being accepted for Ireland's foremost Transition Year Student Programme. The UCD Physics Transition Year Week runs over a 5 day period, from Monday 30th November to Friday 4th December 2015, and will include an exciting programme of stimulating interactive seminars, thought-provoking lectures, fun experiments, and exciting field trips that allow students to experience Physics in the real world.


Dr. Brian Vohnsen has been appointed Topical Editor of Optics LettersDr. Brian Vohnsen has been appointed Topical Editor of Optics Letters (18/09/2015)

UCD Physics Senior Lecturer, Dr. Brian Vohnsen, has been appointed Topical Editor of Optics Letters for a three year term.


UCD School of Physics leads major E-Infrastructure programme success under H2020 UCD School of Physics leads major E-Infrastructure programme success under H2020 (03/09/2015)

Staff at the UCD School of Physics, Dr Donal MacKernan, Adjunct Lecturer, and Prof Luke Drury, Visiting Professor, in conjunction with CECAM, the European Centre for Atomistic and Molecular Computations (www.cecam.org) have led an application of almost €5 Million under Horizons 2020. The project is to create a European centre of excellence in software, training and consultancy in simulation and modelling, acronym E-CAM, which will run for 5 years from October 1st 2015.


UCD School of Physics Annual Summer Internship Poster CompetitionUCD School of Physics Annual Summer Internship Poster Competition (31/07/2015)

UCD School of Physics held its annual Summer Internship Poster Competition yesterday, 30th July 2015. The Internship program is run every year in the School and this year thirteen students worked on projects over the summer. This year we were delighted to welcome Interns from the USA and India, alongside a host of Irish university undergraduate students.


UCD Physics student selected for NASA internship programmeUCD Physics student selected for NASA internship programme (12/06/2015)

UCD Physics student selected for NASA internship programme. Conor O’Toole, a Space Science master's degree student at UCD will get the opportunity of a lifetime to carry out scientific research at NASA, after he was selected for a international internship programme which involves spending 10 weeks at the iconic space agency’s world-renowned AMES Research Centre in Silicon Valley, California. He is completing his MSc in Space Science and Technology at University College Dublin, was selected for the placement on a competitive basis from a pool of nominees


Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics (14/05/2015)

Terms and Conditions 2015/16 As part of its contribution to the further development of 4th level Irish education, UCD School of Physics is proud to announce a scheme of advanced research awards. These awards are intended to underline UCD’s commitment to research excellence and to attract and to retain the very best scholars. Applications are welcome for candidates wishing to apply for a PhD and MSc by research within UCD School of Physics. Scholarships are awarded subject to the attached terms and conditions for 2015-2016. Closing date: 15th June 2015 (Monday @ 5 pm). The Scholarships will be offered by June 30th and the final list confirmed by July 12th 2015.


Closing Soon - Two Post Graduate Scholarships in Star FormationClosing Soon - Two Post Graduate Scholarships in Star Formation (24/04/2015)

The Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS) is offering 2 postgraduate scholarships to work in the Star Formation Group led by Prof. Tom Ray and in collaboration with Dr. Deirdre Coffey of University College Dublin. Funding is available for 4 years starting in September 2015 and includes a stipend, postgraduate fees and provision for conference/workshop participation. The deadline for applications, including receipt of letters of recommendation, is April 30th 2015.


UCD School of Physics’ Technical Officer Pauline O’Callaghan wins another Hackathon award.UCD School of Physics’ Technical Officer Pauline O’Callaghan wins another Hackathon award. (09/04/2015)

UCD School of Physics’ Technical Officer Pauline O’Callaghan wins another Hackathon award. UCD School of Physics Technical Officer, Pauline O’Callaghan, was a pivotal component in the first ever internet of things (IoT) beef hackathon at DCU. Pauline has a keen interest in electronic engineering (alongside many other talents) beyond her work here in UCD School of Physics.


Next Steps: UCD Physics Careers Talks 2015Next Steps: UCD Physics Careers Talks 2015 (02/03/2015)

UCD School of Physics in association with the IOP is delighted to continue the “Next Step” Series with another past graduate. This time it is Theoretical Physics Graduate Daniel O’Neill who is now a Research & Development Electrical Engineer with OpenHydro. OpenHydro is a technology business that designs and manufactures marine turbines to generate renewable energy from tidal streams. The company's vision is to deploy farms of tidal turbines under the world's oceans - silently and invisibly generating electricity at no cost to the environment. OpenHydro's technology enables the ocean's immense energy to be harnessed for the benefit of all. The electricity produced is completely renewable since it relies on tides that are created by the gravitational effect of the sun and moon. Through this innovative technology, OpenHydro aims to extract energy from the oceans in an economically viable and environmentally sensitive manner the open-centre turbine. Daniel O’Neill will discuss his role in OpenHydro, his physics background and career development.Date: Thursday, 12th March, 2015. Time: 3pm. Location: R1.28 Physics, Science North.


Densie Valente wins inaugural RBI Science Week Prize. Densie Valente wins inaugural RBI Science Week Prize. (27/02/2015)

UCD School of Physics graduate staff member Densie Valente has just won inaugural RBI Science Week Prize. RBI encourages science, technology and research partnerships between Brazil and Ireland. At the first event of its kind held by the research bridging consortium – hosted in Dublin Castle on Tuesday 24 February 2015. Denise was presented with the award for her work on crystal fibres as a retinal simulator.


UCD School of Physics Spin-out Secures €800,000 from European Space Agency to Address Big Data Challenges in Space.UCD School of Physics Spin-out Secures €800,000 from European Space Agency to Address Big Data Challenges in Space. (10/02/2015)

UCD School of Physics Spin-out Parameter Space Ltd secured €800,000 from European Space Agency to Address Big Data Challenges in Space. Parameter Space Ltd, is a new University College Dublin (UCD) spin-out company, which has secured a €800,000 contract from the European Space Agency (ESA) to fund a 3-year project.The objective of the project is to develop new software capable of exploiting the unprecedented volume of data returning to Earth from ESA's Gaia satellite which was launched in late 2013.


Upcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2015 - Open for ApplicationsUpcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2015 - Open for Applications (08/02/2015)

Applications for the UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2015 is now open. This is a great chance for a future physicists to get their hands on real LHC data and analyse it to find W & Z bosons. Please note that the masterclass is open to 5th and 6th year Leaving Certificate students, with a keen interest in Physics. Transition Year students are happily invited to apply but priority weighting in selection will be given to students sitting the Leaving Certificate.


Upcoming Event:“The Hot and Energetic Universe with the X-ray Observatory Athena” Public lecture by Prof. Luigi Piro. Upcoming Event:“The Hot and Energetic Universe with the X-ray Observatory Athena” Public lecture by Prof. Luigi Piro. (08/01/2015)

“The Hot and Energetic Universe with the X-ray Observatory Athena” is an upcoming public lecture by Prof Luigi Piro. Following the recent selection by ESA of the Hot and Energetic Universe as the scientific theme to be addressed by its next L2 (Large) mission. Prof Luigi Piro will present the science theme and the mission implementation that the Athena consortium has proposed. Studying the Hot and Energetic Universe is mandatory to understand how ordinary matter emerged to form the complex network of large scale structures that we see today, and how black holes grow and shape the Universe. Monday, 12 Jan, 2015. 1800–1900. Moore Auditorium, O’Brien Centre for Science, UCD.


Forthcoming Event: Technology Rocks, Monday, the 26th of January 2015. UCD School of Physics. Location: UCD O’Brien Centre for Science, Moore AuditoriumForthcoming Event: Technology Rocks, Monday, the 26th of January 2015. UCD School of Physics. Location: UCD O’Brien Centre for Science, Moore Auditorium (17/12/2014)

The Technology Rocks Show is an innovative, interactive show exploring Light, Sound, Electricity, Magnetism and Electromagnetism! Scientific Sue is visiting UCD School of Physics to bring attendees on an amazing journey of scientific discovery. Two shows will take place on Monday, the 26th of January 2015, UCD O’Brien Centre for Science, Moore Auditorium and 2pm, Monday, the 26th of January 2015, UCD O’Brien Centre for Science, Moore Auditorium.


Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2014Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2014 (17/11/2014)

The School of Physics invites students, teachers and parents to our Open Evening on Tuesday, the 18th of November in the Science Centre, UCD. The evening begins at 6.30pm.


Next Steps: UCD Physics Career Talks 2014Next Steps: UCD Physics Career Talks 2014 (12/11/2014)

UCD School of Physics in association with the IOP are delighted to bring you the following career talks. "Next Steps: Physics Career Talks 2014" is a series of 30-minute talks by real employers and past graduates. These talks are aimed at Stage 3 & 4 undergraduate students of UCD School of Physics but all are welcome to attend. 13th Nov. @ 4pm, R1.28 Physics, Science North. CERN Mini-Movie plus talks by Dr James Keaveney and Dr Dermot Moran.


Astrometric exoplanet detection with GaiaAstrometric exoplanet detection with Gaia (06/11/2014)

The burgeoning field of exoplanet science is set to make another remarkable advance, according to work to appear in The Astrophysical Journal, and to be published on November 6th 2014 on arXiv.org.


UCD Physics Graduate Student Success at VPOptics 2014 UCD Physics Graduate Student Success at VPOptics 2014 (01/10/2014)

Two UCD School of Physics students, Ms. Denise Valente dos Santos and Mr. Benjamin Lochocki, from the Advanced Optical Imaging Group led by Dr. Brian Vohnsen excelled at the recent Visual and Physiological Optics meeting in Wroclaw, Poland. Ms. Valente won the best student poster award and Mr. Lochocki the best student oral presentation award; both sponsored by the Optical Society of America. The meeting took place over 3 days and was attended by more than 130 international participants.


UCD School of Physics Annual Summer Internship Poster CompetitionUCD School of Physics Annual Summer Internship Poster Competition (10/09/2014)

UCD School of Physics recently held its annual Summer Internship Poster Competition. The Internship program is run every year in the School and this year sixteen students worked on projects over the summer. The topics ranged from simulations of protein behavior and nanotubes, spectroscopy, simulation and modeling atomic structure and plasmas, investigating the astrophysics of X-ray sources, teaching enhancements for the both the laboratory and an astrophysics module, and cataloging the School Library. The poster session took place in the Physics Common Room on Friday the 25th of July with all sixteen interns present. The event afforded staff the opportunity to see the large amount of work done by the interns and the students were kept busy answering questions on their topics.


Upcoming Event: Unconscious Bias Workshop with presentations by Prof Paul Walton from the Department of Chemistry in York (Athena Gold) and Dr. Pete Jones, chartered Psychologist. Upcoming Event: Unconscious Bias Workshop with presentations by Prof Paul Walton from the Department of Chemistry in York (Athena Gold) and Dr. Pete Jones, chartered Psychologist. (09/07/2014)

Unconscious Bias Workshop organised by the UCD Women in the Sciences Committee. Presentations by Prof Paul Walton from the Department of Chemistry in York (Athena Gold) and Dr. Pete Jones, chartered Psychologist. This event is sponsored by College of Science in University College Dublin and the Institute of Physics and will feature presentations by both speakers and will be of general interest to scientists and engineers.


Remembering Dr. Trevor C. Weekes Remembering Dr. Trevor C. Weekes (30/05/2014)

The School of Physics is saddened to report the loss of graduate, collaborator, and friend, Dr. Trevor Weekes, who passed away on May 26th, 2014. After completing his B.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees at UCD, Trevor went on to have a 47-year career as a researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics. In a collaboration including researchers from the UCD School of Physics, Trevor conducted pioneering research in establishing the field of very high energy gamma-ray astronomy, and received many international awards in recognition of his work. During his career he maintained close links with the UCD School of Physics, and played a major role in the education and training of many of our PhD graduates. He will be sorely missed.


Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics Scholarships in Research and Teaching available with UCD School of Physics (16/05/2014)

UCD School of Physics is proud to announce a scheme of advanced research awards. These awards underline UCD’s commitment to research excellence and to attract and retain the very best scholars. Applications are welcome for candidates wishing to apply for a PhD and MSc by research within UCD School of Physics. Scholarships are awarded subject to the attached terms and conditions for 2014-2015. Closing date: 16th June 2014 (Monday @ 5 pm).


International Particle Physics Masterclasses for Secondary StudentsInternational Particle Physics Masterclasses for Secondary Students (01/04/2014)

This year’s Particle Physics Masterclass had students from 20 schools nationwide coming to the O’Brien Centre for Science for a day of hands-on-learning about particle physics with Dr Ronan McNulty and PhD student Ronan Wallace. The students were part of an annual International Programme were about 8000 secondary school students in 31 countries worldwide come to one of 120 nearby universities or research centres for one day in order to unravel the mysteries of particle physics.


Public Talk: Measuring the Distances to the Stars...and the Making of History’s Greatest Star MapPublic Talk: Measuring the Distances to the Stars...and the Making of History’s Greatest Star Map (26/02/2014)

UCD School of Physics adjunct professor Michael Perryman on the Gaia star-mapping satellite. This lecture took place in the Moore Auditorium in the O'Brien Centre for Science on Thursday, 6th March.


UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2014 - Applications now open! UCD Physics Undergraduate Summer Internships 2014 - Applications now open! (11/02/2014)

UCD School of Physics is very excited to be offering a number of Summer Internships in 2014. There will be projects in various research projects available to the successful applicants. The internships will be of 8 weeks duration. All interested undergraduate students are invited to apply.


UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2014 - Open for ApplicationsUCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2014 - Open for Applications (31/01/2014)

UCD School of Physics announces an exciting day of hands-on learning in the field of particle physics for Irish secondary school students. Applications are now open for the UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass (IPPM). Apply now for a chance to get to grips with the Higgs boson!


School of Physics becomes an Official Supporter of the Institute of Physics Juno ProjectSchool of Physics becomes an Official Supporter of the Institute of Physics Juno Project (30/01/2014)

Project Juno is an award scheme run by the Institute of Physics to recognise and reward physics higher education departments that are making progress in addressing the under-representation of women at all levels in universities. There are three levels of accreditation in the Juno scheme: Supporter, Practitioner and Champion. The School of Physics in UCD has signed up as an official Juno Supporter and is now committed to making an application for Practitioner status within the next two years, with the aim of achieving Champion status within five years.


Dark Matter: the greatest puzzle of our time? Recent Public Lecture in School of Physics!Dark Matter: the greatest puzzle of our time? Recent Public Lecture in School of Physics! (18/12/2013)

On Wednesday, the 4th of December,2013. Professor Lars Bergström (Professor of theoretical physics at Stockholm University, and secretary to the Nobel physics committee). Gave a talk, entitled: Solving the Puzzle of Dark Matter?


A Year in Visual Optics: Understanding the Human Eye & Visual Systems. Chaired By UCD Physics Dr Brian Vohnsen.A Year in Visual Optics: Understanding the Human Eye & Visual Systems. Chaired By UCD Physics Dr Brian Vohnsen. (10/12/2013)

A Year in Visual Optics: Understanding the Human Eye & Visual Systems is a Webinar chaired by UCD Physics Dr Brian Vohnsen. The Webinar intends to provide background for the understanding of the human eye and visual system and to show how such knowledge can be used at the forefront of science to analyze the eye, the visual system and for ultrahigh resolution diagnostics of the human eye.


Dr. Suzanne Foley wins trip to Silicon ValleyDr. Suzanne Foley wins trip to Silicon Valley (03/12/2013)

Dr. Suzanne Foley from the Space Science Group in the School of Physics has won a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Technology Innovation Development Award (TIDA) prize.


Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2013Forthcoming Outreach Event: UCD Physics Open Evening 2013 (25/11/2013)

UCD Physics is excited to be hosting another outreach event for secondary students considering studying Physics at third level.


The GLORIA Project announces solar eclipse expedition and launch of Android app to measure solar activityThe GLORIA Project announces solar eclipse expedition and launch of Android app to measure solar activity (29/10/2013)

On November 3rd a team of astronomers will venture deep into Turkana National Park, Kenya and attempt to broadcast the magic of a total solar eclipse to the world. They are part of the GLORIA project, which aims to bring the thrill of real science to people all over the world, via the web.


UCD physics student reports from their internship in international research internships.UCD physics student reports from their internship in international research internships. (24/10/2013)

A number of UCD physics undergraduates were accepted as interns by international research institutes in The Netherlands, Switzerland and Spain over the summer of 2013. This article is a report from them on their work and experience of an international research internship project.


Surprise Guest: Prof Brian Cox OBE to UCD School of PhysicsSurprise Guest: Prof Brian Cox OBE to UCD School of Physics (18/10/2013)

We were delighted to have Prof. Brian Cox, OBE, call into the UCD School of Physics Common Room in Science North today. Following a hugely entertaining talk in the new UCD O’Brien Centre for Science (Moore Auditorium), unexpectedly he took time to call and meet with a selection of our undergraduate, postgraduate and academic staff. He spoke with students and posed for the photo included with this story.


CERN Mission Higgs 9th Oct Opening EventCERN Mission Higgs 9th Oct Opening Event (14/10/2013)

The CERN traveling exhibition, 'Mission Higgs' has been installed in the new Centre for Science at UCD and is open to the public until October 28th. On Wednesday 9th October, a reception was held to mark the opening of the exhibition.


School of Physics Summer Internship Poster Competition 2013School of Physics Summer Internship Poster Competition 2013 (02/08/2013)

UCD School of Physics recently held its annual Summer Internship Poster Competition. The competition took place in the Physics Common Room on Friday the 26th of July with all 15 undergraduate applicants present displaying their summers research in a poster competition.


European Space Agency (ESA) approves the extension of mission operations for the XMM-Newton and INTEGRAL satellites both related to UCD School of Physics.European Space Agency (ESA) approves the extension of mission operations for the XMM-Newton and INTEGRAL satellites both related to UCD School of Physics. (10/07/2013)

The article summarizes the recent developments for the Space Science research group and highlights the new MSc in Space Science and Technology.


UCD School of Physics a GLORIA partner.UCD School of Physics a GLORIA partner. (08/07/2013)

UCD School of Physics is one of the GLORIA partners through its Watcher Robotic Telescope in South Africa. GLORIA “GLObal Robotic-telescopes Intelligent Array” is the first free and open- access network of robotic telescopes in the world. GLORIA is a Citizen Science project which aims to take advantage of the collective intelligence of the Internet community.


Tunnelling Art and Science Exhibition 2013Tunnelling Art and Science Exhibition 2013 (29/05/2013)

This collaborative exhibition by UCD College of Science and Fine Art NCAD opens on Friday, 31 May at 5pm in Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, The Atrium. The exhibition runs from Saturday, 01 June to Saturday, 08 June. All are warmly welcome to attend.


Remembering the late Professor Alex MontwillRemembering the late Professor Alex Montwill (22/05/2013)

A tribute to the late Professor Alex Montwill, who passed away peacefully on the 18th of April, 2013. Alex was one of the most gifted, vibrant and dynamic forces in UCD School of Physics. We take this moment to reflect on his distinguished life.


Publication Highlight: Swarm DynamicsPublication Highlight: Swarm Dynamics (06/04/2013)

A study of animal swarms uncovers new features of their collective behaviour when overcrowding sets in. A research paper on swarm dynamics by Maksym Romenskyy and Vladimir Lobaskin of UCD School of Physics was highlighted by European Physical Journal B in March 2013.


Physics PhD Graduates win UK PrizesPhysics PhD Graduates win UK Prizes (20/03/2013)

Two past students of the School of Physics, Dr. Kilian Smith and Dr. Donal Gallagher, have been awarded the UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority’s (NDA) prize for best mark achieved by a student on the NTEC M.Sc. course, in 2010 and 2013, respectively. Drs. Smith and Gallagher both completed a BSc in Experimental Physics in UCD in 1996. They both subsequently completed their PhD’s with the Radiation Physics Research group at the School of Physics.


UCD Physics Undergraduate Laboratory Summer Experience 2013 UCD Physics Undergraduate Laboratory Summer Experience 2013 (08/03/2013)

UCD School of Physics is pleased to announce that it will be offering a number of Summer Internships with potential projects in various research groups.


International Particle Physics Masterclass for Secondary School StudentsInternational Particle Physics Masterclass for Secondary School Students (08/02/2013)

UCD School of Physics announces an exciting day of hands-on learning in the field of particle physics for Irish secondary school students.


Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGFs)Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGFs) (07/12/2012)

TGFs are brief outbursts of high-energy light mysteriously produced above thunderstorms. An international team of scientists, including Dr. Sheila McBreen, Dr. Suzanne Foley, David Tierney, Gerard Fitzpatrick and David Byrne from UCD School of Physics, are actively studying these phenomena using the Gamma-ray Burst Monitor (GBM) aboard NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope


Total Solar Eclipse - 13th November 2012Total Solar Eclipse - 13th November 2012 (15/11/2012)

After more than two years without any total solar eclipses (the last one took place on July 11th, 2010), the Moon's shadow revisited the Earth's surface on 14th November 2012. The journey of the shadow began in Australia, and then moved out to the Pacific Ocean. The maximum of the eclipse, with a duration of 4 minutes and 2 seconds, occurred in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Professor Lorraine Hanlon of the UCD School of Physics is part of the GLORIA team that recorded the event.


Physics Open Evening a great success!Physics Open Evening a great success! (14/11/2012)

The open evening at the UCD School of Physics was attended by almost 100 secondary school pupils, many accompanied by their parents. They heard about the three degree programs on offer in Physics during 5 short talks in a session chaired by the Head of School, Prof Padraig Dunne. Graduates gave short talks about their their careers in business, radiation projection, geophysics and medical physics, and one third-year undergraduate spoke about his experiences to date and his plans for the next couple of years. The talks were followed by a reception in the Common Room where students had the opportunity to talk to the guest speakers, lecturers and students in the School.


The Write Stuff at the UCD School of PhysicsThe Write Stuff at the UCD School of Physics (24/10/2012)

UCD School of Physics saw three books written this year by staff members, highlighting a year of Science in Dublin and building on the success of past publications in teaching, outreach, and core research. Professor Peter Hogan, Emeritus Professor Alex Montwill, Emeritus Lecturer, Dr Ann Breslin and Adjunct Lecturer, Dr John White have all had books published in the last twelve months.


School of Physics Summer Internship Program 2012School of Physics Summer Internship Program 2012 (18/10/2012)

Fifteen undergraduate students participated in the 2012 School of Physics Summer Internship Program. There was a lot of interest in the program and it was four times oversubscribed. Nine UCD students and six students from other colleges worked as interns with staff and postgraduate students in School research groups. Follow the link to see their presentations.


Dr Tony Scott Recognised with People of the Year AwardDr Tony Scott Recognised with People of the Year Award (06/07/2012)

Following on from the award to Dr Tony Scott of the Ulysses medal, on Bloomsday, June 16th, the Emeritus Lecturer in the UCD School of Physics has been recognised with a People of the Year Award, on September 15th. Tony, who has never really left UCD and continues to teach since “retiring” almost 8 years ago, received this award in recognition of his life-long outstanding contribution to the engagement of the public in science, and in particular founding almost 50 years ago what is now the BT Young Scientist and technology Exhibition.


Postgraduate short course on Imaging & DataPostgraduate short course on Imaging & Data (26/06/2012)

A master-class for postgraduate students, aiming to introduce the topics of imaging and data analysis, within the context of current research challenges in astrophysics, was held in UCD Physics from June 11th to 15th, 2012.


The Transit of Venus 2012 – Message to the FutureThe Transit of Venus 2012 – Message to the Future (29/05/2012)

On June 5th/6th, 2012, just after midnight Central European Time, the planet Venus will start to cross the face of the Sun on a journey that will take it just over 6 and a half hours to complete. The last was in 2004 and the following one will not be until 2117.


School of Physics Research makes an Impact!School of Physics Research makes an Impact! (20/03/2012)

Academic staff at the UCD School of Physics have had a measurable impact on research in their field, achieving a score of 3.2 in the Normalized Citation Impact, as used by the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings. This is relative to a global average of 1.0.


Particle Physics Masterclass at UCDParticle Physics Masterclass at UCD (20/03/2012)

On March 12th 60 students from 35 schools in Dublin, Wicklow, Wexford, Kerry, Galway, Mayo, Tipperary, Monaghan, and Louth came to UCD to take part in the International Masterclass on Particle Physics. The event attracts over 8000 students worldwide and this year was the first time students from Ireland were involved.


UCD Physics celebrate as the 2012 champions of the IOPI intervarsity quizUCD Physics celebrate as the 2012 champions of the IOPI intervarsity quiz (08/03/2012)

Buswell’s Hotel was on the doorstep for the Dublin teams attending the IOP in Ireland fourth intervarsity quiz on 3 March – and happily UCC and NUIG travelled to ensure that the quiz remained an ‘all Ireland’ event.


Physics in UCD 2012 Images of Research competitionPhysics in UCD 2012 Images of Research competition (23/02/2012)

Quantum dots, adsorbed on a layer of titanium dioxide deposited on a conductive glass electrode, harvest light and can directly convert this into electricity via photo-induced injection of excited electrons into the conduction band of titanium dioxide. This image was created by Physics PhD student, Jennifer O'Reilly and was one of the runners-up in UCD's 2012 Images of Research competition.


Shedding new light on eye diseaseShedding new light on eye disease (01/02/2012)

It’s sometimes said the eyes are windows into the soul - but with the right technology they can also offer insights into their own health. Being able to image tiny structures and cells in the eye can potentially identify the early stages of degenerative blindness, and it may also help eye surgeons carry out corrective procedures. So Dr Brian Vohnsen and his team at the Advanced Optical Imaging Group in UCD are developing ways to image the eye both closely and rapidly.


Quantum physics enables perfectly secure cloud computingQuantum physics enables perfectly secure cloud computing (20/01/2012)

Researchers have succeeded in combining the power of quantum computing with the security of quantum cryptography and have shown that perfectly secure cloud computing can be achieved using the principles of quantum mechanics. They have performed an experimental demonstration of quantum computation in which the input, the data processing, and the output remain unknown to the quantum computer. The international team of scientists published the results of the experiment in the recent issue of Science. (Image by Equinox Graphics)


UCD School of Physics Transition Year event (STYPE)UCD School of Physics Transition Year event (STYPE) (24/12/2011)

This year's event hosted 28 student from Dublin and surrounding counties for a week of physics based activities. See the full illustrated report.


Physics FM episode 2
Physics FM episode 2 (19/12/2011)

UCD Transition Year Physics Experience took control of the PhysicsFM studio this week. The result? A new rap. An attempted interview with a Black Hole and a Higgs Boson. Weather updates for the Christmas season, with special guest Frosty the Snowman. And some travel options if you fancy escaping the cold. All covered at www.physicsfm.tumblr.com


Physicists focus in on Higgs boson – the so called ‘God particle’Physicists focus in on Higgs boson – the so called ‘God particle’ (16/12/2011)

Two experimental physics groups at CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research - the world's leading laboratory for particle physics - have reported significant progress in the search for the Higgs boson, referred to as the ‘God particle’ in popular culture.


Follow us on Physics FM!Follow us on Physics FM! (23/11/2011)

Why is the sky blue? How long is one second? Is there a link between the two? Transition year students at Rathdown School in Dublin have been bending their minds around the rather complex answers to some of the simplest questions one can ask. Listening to talks entitled “Illuminating Time”, “Quirks of Quantum Mechanics” and “Topics in Modern Physics”, led the students, in conjunction with their teacher, Ms. Lisa Banahan, to produce the very first episode of “Physics FM”.


Light from Gamma-ray Burst Afterglow Reveals Composition of Galaxies in the Early UniverseLight from Gamma-ray Burst Afterglow Reveals Composition of Galaxies in the Early Universe (05/11/2011)

An international team of astronomers, including Dr. Sheila McBreen from UCD School of Physics, has used the brief but bright light from a distant gamma-ray burst source to study the composition of very distant galaxies. The new observations, made with the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope, have revealed two galaxies in the young Universe that are richer in heavy chemical elements than the Sun.


UCD Physics student success at European ‘Scipreneur’ competitionUCD Physics student success at European ‘Scipreneur’ competition (20/10/2011)

UCD Physics undergraduate and entrepreneur, Rhona Togher, was selected to go to the Scipreneur competition as an alumnus of the Intel Science and Engineering Fair and won the second prize with her team.


Irish Astronomers participate in major pulsar discoveryIrish Astronomers participate in major pulsar discovery (07/10/2011)

Astronomers at four Irish third level institutions including Dr John Quinn of UCD School of Physics have participated in the detection of pulsed gamma-ray emission from the Crab Pulsar at energies far beyond what current theoretical models of pulsars can explain. Their results are published in a paper in the October 7th issue of the prestigious journal Science.


Physics Conferrings September 2011Physics Conferrings September 2011 (20/09/2011)

The School celebrated the achievements of its undergraduate and graduate students at the September conferrings, with a reception in the Physics Common Room for the new graduates and their supporters.


High Energy Astrophysics Summer School 2011High Energy Astrophysics Summer School 2011 (19/07/2011)

The summer school organised by UCD School of Physics and the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies took part in UCD on 04th-15th July, 2011 and was attended by about 70 delegates.


Physics in Ireland: the brightest minds go furtherPhysics in Ireland: the brightest minds go further (15/06/2011)

Minister for Research & Innovation, Seán Sherlock, launched a new report from the Institute of Physics in Ireland on Irish physics graduates: According to the report, One-in-seven physics graduates is earning more than €100,000 a year. They tend to start at a higher salary than many other graduates and continue on a lucrative career path.


'The Art of Physics''The Art of Physics' (31/05/2011)

Artist Emer O'Boyle presents her vision of the School of Physics people and research.


Reality in a FishbowlReality in a Fishbowl (20/05/2011)

Reality in a Fishbowl is a multimedia student exhibition that follows a new collaborative module between UCD School of Physics and Fine Art NCAD. The module is called Tunnelling Art and Physics. The exhibition showcases 11 students from art and physics, using creative and scientific processes to explore the relationship between the two disciplines.


3rd Annual IOP Intervarsity Quiz3rd Annual IOP Intervarsity Quiz (13/03/2011)

Friday March 4th saw an epic battle between seven Irish University Physics teams (UCD, UCC, TCD, QUB, UL, NUIM, DCU). The UCD Physics common room provided an intimate venue for this, the third Institute of Physics (IOP) Intervarsities Quiz.


ACAM Workshops 2011ACAM Workshops 2011 (19/02/2011)

Atlantic Centre for Atomistic Modelling is organising and hosting a number of research workshops this year. The topics include computational aspects of Density Functional Theory, mechanics of amorphous materials, molecules in electric field, etc.


Hamilton award to UCD Physics studentHamilton award to UCD Physics student (19/01/2011)

Mark Ross-Lonergan, a Theoretical Physics student at the UCD School of Physics, was the UCD winner of the Royal Irish Academy Hamilton Prize 2010 for achieving the best performance in Mathematics in nine of the Higher Education Institutions in Ireland.


Retirement of Mr. Victor LiteraRetirement of Mr. Victor Litera (19/01/2011)

Victor Litera retired as Senior Technical Officer in the UCD School of Physics in November 2010, after 40 years of loyal and continuous service.


Physics Conferrings December 2010Physics Conferrings December 2010 (20/12/2010)

The School celebrated the achievements of its undergraduate and graduate students at the December conferrings, with a reception in the Physics Common Room. It was a very special day for all the graduands, as well as their families and friends. We are very proud of all they have achieved and wish them well in their future careers.


China Scholarship SchemeChina Scholarship Scheme (16/12/2010)

UCD and the China Scholarship Council (CSC) affiliated with the Ministry of Education of China have established a scholarship scheme to assist Chinese students to pursue postgraduate research in UCD leading to a PhD.


New ideas come to light through project-based learningNew ideas come to light through project-based learning (15/12/2010)

The module PHYC10170 is now running in its third year and has successfully proven the value, team spirit, and organization obtained via group work on topics of high current relevance such as energy, transport, communication, and more.


Retirement of Prof. Peter MitchellRetirement of Prof. Peter Mitchell (02/12/2010)

Professor Peter Mitchell retired from the staff of the UCD School of Physics on September 30th 2010, after a distinguished academic career spanning 40 years. An excellent colleague and friend, we thank Peter for all he has given to both students and staff at University College Dublin, and wish him every happiness in his retirement.


It is Rocket Science - Helen Keen LectureIt is Rocket Science - Helen Keen Lecture (16/10/2010)

Helen Keen loves space rockets. She brings their story to life with a fusion of stand-up comedy and tinfoil in her award-winning show –soon to be a BBC Radio 4 series. Join her joyful exploration of stargazing, space-racing, the boundless possibilities of an infinite universe. ‘IT IS ROCKET SCIENCE!’ will take you on a whistle-stop tour around the Great Brains who put monkeys, ladies, dogs and gentlemen into orbit. It is coming to UCD on December 2nd 2010.


Up up and away!Up up and away! (22/04/2010)

Each December for the last three years, the UCD School of Physics has hosted groups of Transition Year students. Here you can read about the 2009 event.


UCD Physics academics publish in Nature & ScienceUCD Physics academics publish in Nature & Science (08/12/2009)

Two academic staff members of the UCD School of Physics have recently published articles in the prestigeous journals Nature & Science.


Upcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 - Open for ApplicationsUpcoming Event: UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 - Open for Applications ()

Applications for the UCD International Particle Physics Masterclass 2016 are now open. This is a great chance for a future physicists to get their hands on real LHC data and analyse it to find W & Z bosons. Please note that the masterclass is open to 5th and 6th year Leaving Certificate students, with a keen interest in Physics. Transition Year students are happily invited to apply but priority weighting in selection will be given to students sitting the Leaving Certificate.


Summer Internship 2014

UCD Physics Undergraduate Laboratory Summer Experience 2014

The School of Physics will be offering a number of Summer Internships in 2014. A list of potential projects in various research projects are listed below.

A stipend of approximately 450 Euro will be paid per student. In some circumstances an additional contribution to accommodation costs may be provided, however transport costs to UCD cannot be paid. Students at all undergraduate levels are encouraged to apply, but priority will be given to those in their penultimate year. The program is not restricted to UCD students. 

Applicants should submit the Summer Internship 2014 Application via

http://www.ucd.ie/physics/internships/

Then email their cover letter and CV (max 3 pages) in a SINGLE pdf file by email to PhysicsInterns2014@gmail.com with “Internship 2014” in the subject.

The deadline for applications is 21st Feb 2013 at 1pm.

Internships are typically 6 to 8 weeks in duration, starting in June. Details of start dates can be negotiated with individual supervisors at a later date.

Comments from last years intern participants can be found in the following document LINK to 2013 program.

Enquiries to

Dr. Oran Morris <oran.morris@ucd.ie> or

Dr. Sheila McBreen <sheila.mcbreen@ucd.ie>

Projects

  1. Photo-absorption of Magnesium

This project will introduce the student to atomic physics, experimental and calculations. The main aim of the project is to use the Cowan atomic structure code to model the photo-absorption behavior of magnesium, which is currently of interest due to its ‘quasi 2 electron structure’. It is envisaged that the work will be supplemented by laser-plasma based photo-absorption experiments. The project will be hosted in the Atomic, Molecular and Plasma Physics (Spectroscopy) Group. Students will need some understanding of the quantum mechanical treatment of atomic systems to undertake this project

Contact: Dr. Emma Sokell, Physics, Rm. 3.13, <emma.sokell@ucd.ie>

http://www.ucd.ie/speclab/research/

 

  1. Advanced Laboratory Development

This project will involve upgrading existing experiments and the development of new experiments for the advanced laboratory. The work can be tuned to suit particular areas of interest but will require both experimental testing and documentation development.

Contact: Dr. Emma Sokell, Physics, Rm. 3.13, <emma.sokell@ucd.ie>

http://www.ucd.ie/speclab/research/

 

  1. Single carbon nanotube imaging

Supervisor: Dr. James Rice

 

Studies of single carbon nanotubes will be undertaken, concentrating on the use of single molecule Raman spectroscopy to probe the properties of carbon nanotubes at the single molecule level.

 

Contact: James Rice <james.rice@ucd.ie>

 

  1. 4.     Vacuum Ultraviolet Spectroscopy of Tiny Laser Plasmas

 

The wavelength region between 100 nm and 200 nm is one where almost everything absorbs and is ionised, although above 110 nm some transparent optical materials exist.  A broadband tunable light source in this region would allow for many applications in optics and chemistry to be developed, but currently no simple high radiance sources exist.  In this project the student will use a range of high average power lasers, a range of target materials and a VUV spectrograph to examine the emission properties of laser plasmas in this region.

 

Contact: Fergal O'Reilly - <f.oreilly@ucd.ie> - Room 123

 

 

  1. 5.     "Controlling a crowd with orienting signals" (computer simulation)

 

The project involves computer simulation of self-propelled particles, which mimic the motion of a group of bacteria, animals, or humans in confinement. We model a situation when signals are sent to the group to drive it in certain direction. The task is to determine how the collective response (time of complete reorientation) depends on individual characteristics like the susceptibility to the signals and on the build up of collective action. Some basic programming skills and familiarity with linux would be an advantage.

 

Contact: Dr. Vladimir Lobaskin <vladimir.lobaskin@ucd.ie>

 

  1. 6.     "Interaction of nanobubbles" (computer simulation)

 

It is believed that nanobubbles can appear in various industrial and biological processes but they are extremely difficult to observe. Due to different ion affinity to adsorption at the air-water interface, air bubbles in water tend to be charged and move in external electric fields and interact with each other at large distances, although their interaction is indirect.

The task is to simulate a bulk of water with bubbles inside and extract characteristics of their interaction from the distribution statistics. The modelling will be performed using the ESPResSo simulation package. Some basic programming skills and familiarity with linux would be an advantage.

 

Contact: Dr. Vladimir Lobaskin <vladimir.lobaskin@ucd.ie>

 

  1. 7.     Search for dust scattered X-ray halos around gamma-ray burst afterglows

 

Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are the most luminous explosions in the Universe, with central engines which drive the outbursts in highly relativistic jets. Most of their energy is produced at high energy gamma-rays and last only a few seconds. However, about 10% is released as longer wavelength ‘afterglow’ emission which is detectable at X-ray, optical and radio wavelengths for days, weeks and even months after the main burst.

The large initial X-ray flux implies that if the GRB occurs in a direction of high galactic dust (i.e. close the galactic plane), X-ray scattering is likely to be visible for a short period of time (1 day after the main burst) in the form of expanding disks around the GRB afterglow. The detection of such halos offers a powerful tool for mapping the three-dimensional distribution of galactic dust clouds.

The aim of this project is to search for such X-ray halos using data from XMM-Newton, Chandra and Swift; study their spectral properties and estimate their distance.

Contact: Dr. Antonio Martin-Carillo <antonio.martin-carrillo@ucd.ie>

 

 

 

  1. 8.     Analysis of Rare Earth Spectra in the 2-6 nm region.

 

While the emission spectra of rare earth elements with atomic number, Z>62 are well known at wavelengths greater than ~6 nm (photon energies  <200 eV), very little work has been performed to date on their emission at shorter wavelengths.  Radiation at these wavelengths has potential uses for imaging and nanofabrication, where reduced diffraction means that smaller features can be resolved and for surface modification such as improving biocompatibility of new materials. Recently work performed on emission spectra from elements with  72≤Z≤74 have shown the presence of strong bands of emission from 4f-5g transitions at short wavelengths.  Because the number of individual lines is very large, transitions in a single ion stage overlap in a narrow energy region to give an unresolved band of emission, a so-called unresolved transition array or UTA. UTAs from adjacent ion stages lie side by side giving the spectrum a saw-tooth appearance.  The spectra were obtained from plasmas produced by high power pulsed lasers. For laser pulses of nanosecond duration, the maximum ion stages observed are around 20+, whilst for pulse durations of around 150 picoseconds ion stages up to 30+ are obtained.  Similar behaviour in rare earth spectra should result in the presence of these UTA in the 2-6 nm region.

The proposed project will involve obtaining spectra from a number of elements in the range 64≤Z≤71from laser produced plasmas.  The spectra will be analysed by comparison with known results and the behaviour of similar transitions in higher Z elements.  Atomic structure calculations will also be used to verify the identification of spectral features. Members of the Spectroscopy group routinely use the Cowan Atomic Structure package and a number of plasma codes to estimate plasma conditions. Knowledge of the electron temperature, which depends on the laser pulse energy and focussing conditions enables prediction of the ion stage.  Theoretical spectra for individual stages can be obtained from the Cowan code which gives wavelengths and intensities.

The project will give experience of working with high vacuum spectrometers, high power lasers, spectral analysis, plasma physics and theoretical atomic physics.

 

Contact: Prof G. O’Sullivan <gerry.osullivan@ucd.ie>

 

 

  1. 9.     Extra-galactic Astronomy Practical Design

 

The purpose of this internship is to design and prepare practical assignments for the final year module: Galaxies, Observational Cosmology and the Interstellar Medium (PHYC40030). The tasks will include analysis of spectra and spectral energy distributions of a galaxies and active galaxies, calculation of star formation and specific star formation rates, and modelling of the cosmic background radiation angular spectrum.

 

This project is limited to students who have already completed PHYC40030 in UCD or an advanced astrophysics course in another university. Additionally, students due to complete this course in the future are excluded.

 

Contact: Dr. Sheila McBreen, <sheila.mcbreen@ucd.ie>

 

 

10. Molecular modeling of proteins and protein-protein interactions: Theoretical and computational approaches.

 

 

Description: The study of protein folding via simulation (“in silica”) faces challenges in the separation between the physical time-scales of folding and the accessible time-scales of simulation. A promising recent development is the use of Markov State Models (MSMs), where configurational space is discretized into a network of states, such that the mean lifetime of each state is much larger than the transition time between the states. These project will involve designing and using simple molecular dynamics simulations using an MSM-based formalism, running typically on professional workstations and supercomputing clusters, with the aim to improve the speedup of typical molecular dynamics simulations. Simple applications could range from studying the basic biopysical problem of helix-forming peptides and of helix-helix interactions, to applications to modeling cancer-related kinases or diabetes-related amyloid nanofibrils.

 

Contact: Dr. Nicolae-Viorel Buchete <buchete@ucd.ie>

 

 

11. Python in the Advanced Laboratories

 

Description: We aim to utilise Python in the Advanced Laboratories to replace both the  interfacing in C++ and the computational physics in MATLAB. In addition, we would like to explore the use of iPython Notebook. This project will involve evaluating Python for the above purposes, testing Python and providing documentation and sample programs for interfacing to equipment. If time permits there may also be the possibility to work on Rapsberry-Pi and/or Arduino-related projects for the electronics laboratory.

 

Contact: John Quinn <john.quinn@ucd.ie>