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School of Physics and Astronomy

Space, Solar, and Astrophysical Plasmas

The Space, Solar and Astrophysical Plasmas group carries out research into the naturally occurring plasmas which pervade the solar system, and beyond. We use state of the art numerical simulation and analysis of data from scientific spacecraft. The group has a broad range of interests, including the Sun, solar corona, solar wind, collisionless shocks, plasma waves and instabilities, reconnection, turbulence and particle acceleration. We also have involvement in several spacecraft missions including Cluster and Solar Probe Plus.

PhD projects may be available from any of the areas listed below.

Space  and Astrophysical Plasma Physics

Research areas cover: the structure of collisionless shocks, including the Earth’s bow shock and interplanetary shocks; particle acceleration; kinetic waves and associated features; plasma turbulence. Theoretical work includes numerical self-consistent particle simulations and kinetic wave theory. Research areas cover: the structure of collisionless shocks, including the Earth’s bow shock and interplanetary shocks; particle acceleration; kinetic waves and associated features; plasma turbulence.

Further information can be found on the Space Plasma website.

Solar Plasma Physics

Theoretical work includes numerical self-consistent plasma kinetic simulations and kinetic wave theory. Solar coronal heating problem; various wave modes in inhomogeneous space plasmas and collisionless magnetic reconnection; solar flares; particle acceleration by dispersive Alfven waves in the transversely inhomogeneous plasma in the context of solar flares and magnetoshperic physics, using particle-in-cell numerical simulation; large scale numerical simulations (Vlasov, Particle-in-Cell and Magnetohydrodynamic); theoretical modelling of radio emission from solar flare electrons and forthcoming radio data analysis of Type III solar radio bursts from Chilbolton LOFAR Station

Further information can be found at