Department of Physics | PhD Physics 36 months PHD Program By Durham University |Top Universities
Subject Ranking

# 69QS Subject Rankings

Program Duration

36 monthsProgram duration

Scholarship

YesScholarships

Main Subject Area

Physics and AstronomyMain Subject Area

Program overview

Main Subject

Physics and Astronomy

Degree

PhD

Study Level

PHD

Study Mode

On Campus

PhD Physics at Durham University

[email protected]


Research degrees (MScR or PhD) may be undertaken in any of the Department's five research sections:


  • Advanced Instrumentation (CfAI)
  • Astronomy (CEA/ICC)
  • Condensed Matter Physics (CMP)
  • Elementary Particle Theory (IPPP)
  • Quantum, Light & Matter (QLM)


Astronomy -  Durham is one of the UK's leading centres for astronomical research with world-class groups working in a wide range of fields covering the observational, theoretical and instrumentation aspects of astronomy. There are 28 academic staff across the combined astronomy groups, with over 100 postdocs, postgraduate students and support and technical staff involved in astronomy research.


Quantum Light & Matter - The Durham Quantum Light & Matter (QLM) research section encompasses several research groups sharing a common interest in the study of the quantum properties of atoms, molecules and solids and their interactions with light. Our work aims to advance our fundamental understanding of quantum light and matter, whilst exploring a broad range of applications in quantum science, metrology and quantum technologies.


Advanced Instrumentation - The Centre for Advanced Instrumentation's (CfAI) vision is to undertake a world-leading programme of education and research with international impact, based on the development of novel instrumentation and cutting edge technologies with applications across a range of strategically important scientific areas of benefit to modern society.

Members of CfAI are directly involved in two Covid-19 related projects. In one project the precision optics facility is being re-opened to machine mould tools for infrared lenses for integration into a novel thermal imaging system. The second project is using an imaging system, designed within CfAI, to view with cellular resolution inside the lung using a micro-fibre optic endoscope. This is a collaborative project involving Durham, Bath, Herriot Watt, Dundee Universities, and led by Edinburgh University.


Condensed Matter Physics - Materials Physics is one of the largest, most diverse and dynamic fields in modern physics, encompassing all aspects of the solid and liquids states of matter. This breadth is reflected in the research undertaken at Durham which spans a wide range of subjects from light emitting polymers and solar cell materials to nanoscale magnetics. Our work aims to push forward the forefront of our understanding in the physics of materials using experiment, theory and computation.


Elementary Particle Theory - The Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology's (IPPP) work addresses the mysteries surrounding Antimatter and Dark Matter, the possibility of Supersymmetry, New Fundamental Forces and even the very modifications of the Structure of Spacetime at very high energies.  In this, we work closely with the IPPP on building a bridge between theory and experiment in understanding the building blocks and fundamental forces of the Universe.


We are one of the top Physics Departments in the UK for research, as recognised in repeated assessments and league tables. According to REF2021, 96% of Durham research was considered to be “world leading” or of an “internationally excellent quality” placing use 7th in the UK when the size of our research base is considered.


Based on our broad range of world-leading research, we provide flexible and engaging degrees that allow our students to experience the full fascination of the subject. Our courses follow a modular structure which allows for a great deal of flexibility. We offer many advanced projects based on our broad research portfolio. All of our programmes are accredited by the Institute of Physics.


According to the government's Teaching Excellence Framework, Durham University delivers consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students. It is of the highest quality in the UK.


We seek to develop the practical and intellectual skills sought by employers and we are regularly ranked among the country's top performers for graduate employment. Our graduates have progressed to careers in business, industry, commerce, research, management and education, and typically more than fifth of our graduates go on to study for higher degrees.


The Department also has an impressive track record of spin-out technology companies that commercialise our knowledge in areas of semiconductors, composites and advanced instrumentation. Examples of high-profile employers include BT, Procter & Gamble, Rolls Royce and BAE Systems.


Durham University: Inspiring the Extraordinary

We believe that inspiring our people to do outstanding things at Durham enables Durham people to do outstanding things in the world.

A globally outstanding centre of teaching and research excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, a unique and historic setting - Durham is a university like no other!

Program overview

Main Subject

Physics and Astronomy

Degree

PhD

Study Level

PHD

Study Mode

On Campus

PhD Physics at Durham University

[email protected]


Research degrees (MScR or PhD) may be undertaken in any of the Department's five research sections:


  • Advanced Instrumentation (CfAI)
  • Astronomy (CEA/ICC)
  • Condensed Matter Physics (CMP)
  • Elementary Particle Theory (IPPP)
  • Quantum, Light & Matter (QLM)


Astronomy -  Durham is one of the UK's leading centres for astronomical research with world-class groups working in a wide range of fields covering the observational, theoretical and instrumentation aspects of astronomy. There are 28 academic staff across the combined astronomy groups, with over 100 postdocs, postgraduate students and support and technical staff involved in astronomy research.


Quantum Light & Matter - The Durham Quantum Light & Matter (QLM) research section encompasses several research groups sharing a common interest in the study of the quantum properties of atoms, molecules and solids and their interactions with light. Our work aims to advance our fundamental understanding of quantum light and matter, whilst exploring a broad range of applications in quantum science, metrology and quantum technologies.


Advanced Instrumentation - The Centre for Advanced Instrumentation's (CfAI) vision is to undertake a world-leading programme of education and research with international impact, based on the development of novel instrumentation and cutting edge technologies with applications across a range of strategically important scientific areas of benefit to modern society.

Members of CfAI are directly involved in two Covid-19 related projects. In one project the precision optics facility is being re-opened to machine mould tools for infrared lenses for integration into a novel thermal imaging system. The second project is using an imaging system, designed within CfAI, to view with cellular resolution inside the lung using a micro-fibre optic endoscope. This is a collaborative project involving Durham, Bath, Herriot Watt, Dundee Universities, and led by Edinburgh University.


Condensed Matter Physics - Materials Physics is one of the largest, most diverse and dynamic fields in modern physics, encompassing all aspects of the solid and liquids states of matter. This breadth is reflected in the research undertaken at Durham which spans a wide range of subjects from light emitting polymers and solar cell materials to nanoscale magnetics. Our work aims to push forward the forefront of our understanding in the physics of materials using experiment, theory and computation.


Elementary Particle Theory - The Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology's (IPPP) work addresses the mysteries surrounding Antimatter and Dark Matter, the possibility of Supersymmetry, New Fundamental Forces and even the very modifications of the Structure of Spacetime at very high energies.  In this, we work closely with the IPPP on building a bridge between theory and experiment in understanding the building blocks and fundamental forces of the Universe.


We are one of the top Physics Departments in the UK for research, as recognised in repeated assessments and league tables. According to REF2021, 96% of Durham research was considered to be “world leading” or of an “internationally excellent quality” placing use 7th in the UK when the size of our research base is considered.


Based on our broad range of world-leading research, we provide flexible and engaging degrees that allow our students to experience the full fascination of the subject. Our courses follow a modular structure which allows for a great deal of flexibility. We offer many advanced projects based on our broad research portfolio. All of our programmes are accredited by the Institute of Physics.


According to the government's Teaching Excellence Framework, Durham University delivers consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students. It is of the highest quality in the UK.


We seek to develop the practical and intellectual skills sought by employers and we are regularly ranked among the country's top performers for graduate employment. Our graduates have progressed to careers in business, industry, commerce, research, management and education, and typically more than fifth of our graduates go on to study for higher degrees.


The Department also has an impressive track record of spin-out technology companies that commercialise our knowledge in areas of semiconductors, composites and advanced instrumentation. Examples of high-profile employers include BT, Procter & Gamble, Rolls Royce and BAE Systems.


Durham University: Inspiring the Extraordinary

We believe that inspiring our people to do outstanding things at Durham enables Durham people to do outstanding things in the world.

A globally outstanding centre of teaching and research excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, a unique and historic setting - Durham is a university like no other!

Admission requirements

3 Years
Sep-2024

Tuition fee and scholarships

One of the important factors when considering a master's degree is the cost of study. Luckily, there are many options available to help students fund their master's programme. Download your copy of the Scholarship Guide to find out which scholarships from around the world could be available to you, and how to apply for them.

In this guide you will find:
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Where to look for scholarship opportunities

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How to apply to scholarships relevant to you

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A list of available scholarships around the world

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A scholarship application checklist

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More programs from the university

Durham University is a globally outstanding centre of teaching, learning and research excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, in a unique and historic setting. Durham is a university like no other!

We conduct innovative and impactful research to transform lives and make a difference globally and locally: research to empower and inspire.

We offer a broad range of courses. Our degree programmes are informed by research undertaken by our high-calibre staff in partnership with policymakers, industry, the public sector and communities globally.
 
Alongside the outstanding education we offer to students, we believe that participating in every aspect of university life is fundamental. The deep affinities created by each of our 17 Colleges ensure that we always have a sense of community at the heart of all we do.

Durham's four Faculties offer a host of Undergraduate courses covering a variety of subject disciplines:

  • Durham University Business School
  • Faculty of Arts & Humanities
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Social Sciences & Health

Opportunities for multidisciplinary studies are also available through the Department of Natural Sciences, Department of Liberal Arts or the Department of Combined Honours in Social Sciences.

Please visit the Durham University website (www.durham.ac.uk) for the full available suite of Undergraduate programmes.

Durham University: Inspiring the Extraordinary

Durham University is a globally outstanding centre of teaching, learning and research excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, in a unique and historic setting. Durham is a university like no other!

We conduct innovative and impactful research to transform lives and make a difference globally and locally: research to empower and inspire.

We offer a broad range of courses. Our degree programmes are informed by research undertaken by our high-calibre staff in partnership with policymakers, industry, the public sector and communities globally.
 
Alongside the outstanding education we offer to students, we believe that participating in every aspect of university life is fundamental. The deep affinities created by each of our 17 Colleges ensure that we always have a sense of community at the heart of all we do.

Durham's four Faculties offer a host of Masters/Postgraduate Taught courses covering a variety of subject disciplines:

  • Durham University Business School
  • Faculty of Arts & Humanities
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Social Sciences & Health

Please visit the Durham University website (www.durham.ac.uk) for the full available suite of Masters/Postgraduate Taught programmes.

Durham University: Inspiring the Extraordinary

PHD programs