Lattice simulations of Beyond the Standard Model phenomena

Project description

We invite applications for a PhD position in theoretical physics. The project will investigate Beyond the Standard Model theories called Composite Higgs models. In these theories, the Higgs boson is not a fundamental particle but a composite one, a feature that allows the model to evade the naturalness problem. The composite scenarios have received considerable attention in the quest for new physics at modern accelerator facilities like the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). 

In Nature, only non-perturbative phenomena can explain bound states like the ordinary proton, which mass mostly comes from the binding energy of its constituents: the quarks. In Composite Higgs theories, tremendous efforts are being made to design extensions of the Standard Model that explain the mass and properties of the Higgs boson as a bound state.

The lattice approach, used in this project, is a very successful first principle method that allows to solve Gauge Theories in the non-perturbative regime. Calculations resort to large scale simulations and are typically run on the largest supercomputers.  Lattice simulations are a unique tool to explore non perturbative phenomena in theories which cannot be analytically solved.

In this project we will use lattice simulations to explore new non perturbative dynamics and provide quantitative results that are relevant for modern experiments. Our results will inform searches for new physics performed at the LHC and test the viability of this new class of models.

The candidate will be involved in all the aspects of the project, ranging from simulations, to data analysis, together with development of analytical tools in quantum field theories.

Candidates will be expected to have experience in some aspects of quantum field theory and in efficient programming.


Applicants should have (at least) a first or upper second class honours degree in an appropriate subject and preferably a relevant MSc or MRes qualification. 

The studentship is supported for three years and includes full home/EU tuition fees plus a stipend of £15,285 per annum. The studentship will only fully fund those applicants who are eligible for home/EU fees with relevant qualifications. Applicants normally required to cover overseas fees would have to cover the difference between the home/EU and the overseas tuition fee rates (approximately £12,405 per annum).

If you wish to discuss this project further informally, please contact Dr Vincent Drach However, applications must be made in accordance with the details shown below.

General information about applying for a research degree at University of Plymouth is available at: . You can apply via the online application available on the link above and by clicking 'Apply now'.

Please mark your application FAO Doctoral College and clearly state that you are applying for a PhD studentship within the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics.

For more information on the admissions process contact the Doctoral College

The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Friday 1 May 2020. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview in the last week of May. We regret that we may not be able to respond to all applications. Applicants who have not received an offer of a place by the 2nd week of June should consider their application has been unsuccessful on this occasion.