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Research Fellow

Zepler Institute for Photonics and Nanoelectronics

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £30,942 to £38,017
Full Time Fixed Term (until 04/04/2023)
Closing Date:  Monday 21 December 2020
Reference:  1308420PN

LITECS: Laser Imaging of Turbine Engine Combustion Species

You will work at the Optoelectronics research Centre (ORC), in the renowned High-Power Fibre Laser (Johan Nilsson) and Novel Glass (Dan Hewak) groups, in top-class laboratories and with unsurpassed access to tailor-made fibres from ORC’s fabrication facilities. You will be integrated fully in the team and conduct research both independently and in collaboration with other members at ORC and at partners. You may spend time in partner locations such as Sheffield and Loughborough, to integrate and validate the lasers in turbine testbed. Beyond the immediate research project, you will have excellent opportunities to participate in many exciting activities in ORC’s open and rich research environment and assist in the supervision of PhD students.

The primary elements of your role will be undertaking research, building, and validating mid-infrared fibre laser sources with the power levels, linewidth, stability, and reliability required for chemical species tomography of gas turbine engines. LITECS is a new £8 million EPSRC-funded project involving six universities and five companies, each contributing world-leading expertise. LITECS targets transformational combustion measurement and modelling tools to enable the development of low emission engine designs and evaluation of new low emission fuels, leading to reduced environmental impact. As well as aircraft, gas turbines are used to power trains, ships, and electrical generators. Sustainability and the need to minimise emissions are significant global issues. To respond to that, UK and industry have committed to drastic emissions reductions. See for further details about LITECS. 

You will have a PhD* or equivalent professional qualifications and experience related to optics or lasers, a strong background in lasers/optics with excellent experimental skills and research experience. You will have a hands-on approach along with a keen interest in developing new physical ideas from proof-of-principle to novel and practical, application-optimised lasers in collaboration with academic and industrial project partners working in other fields.

This is a fixed term contract with an end date of 04/04/2023.

Equality, diversity and Inclusion is central to the ethos in the Zepler Institute. We particularly encourage women, Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME), LGBT and disabled applicants to apply for this position.  We value diversity and inclusion at the University and aspire for our staff population to be broadly representative of our community.   In recognition of our continued commitment to improving equality for women in science we were awarded an Athena SWAN Bronze.   We gives full consideration to applicants that wish to work flexibly including part-time and due consideration will be given to applicants who have taken a career break. The University has a generous maternity policy**, onsite childcare facilities along with other benefits such as the cycle to work scheme.

The University of Southampton is in the top 1% of world universities and in the top 10 of the UK’s research-intensive universities. The University of Southampton is committed to sustainability and being a globally responsible university and has recently been awarded the Platinum EcoAward.  Our vision is to embed the principles of sustainability into all aspects of our individual and collective work, integrating sustainable development into our business planning, policy-making, and professional activities.  This commits all of our staff and students to take responsibility for managing their activities to minimise harm to the environment, whether this through switching off non-essential electrical equipment or using the recycling facilities.

*Applications for Research Fellow positions will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification.  The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon successful completion of the PhD.  Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

 **subject to qualifying criteria

For informal enquires please contact Southampton’s principal investigator, Prof Johan Nilsson (, +44 (0) 750 821 3021).

Application Procedure 

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Sam Stubbs (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 2380 592750 or email  Please quote reference 1308420PN on all correspondence.

Athena SWAN Bronze Award holder: Zepler Institute

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We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

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