The University of Southampton

Postgraduate PhD research projects

There are a great range of PhD research opportunities at the ORC. You could be working with lasers, metamaterials, optoelectronics, Photonics, Fibre Optics, Hollow Core Fibres and more advanced materials.  

There are a number of projects that have guaranteed funding that have deadlines, and these are listed on our jobs page. We also have a full list of all projects below, broken down by research theme, then by group, that you can look through.

We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse culture at the University and creating an environment where people can balance successful careers with their commitments and interests outside of work. If you are interested in a part-time PhD, please contact the supervisor to discuss the suitability of your chosen project for part-time study.

There will be funding on these jobs for the right candidate. If you see something you like, then contact the Supervisor to discuss your options. All contact details can be found on our people page or email Peter Horak with any queries (


Light Generation and Manipulation:

Light Generation and Manipulation covers Lasers, Optical Parametric Oscillators and non-linear devices that perform, for example frequency conversion. This covers a wide range of techniques and devices, but aimed at the same end result.

Optical Materials:

Optical Materials involves the discovery, fabrication and characterisation of substances with new or interesting optical properties.

Biophotonic Microsystems:

Some of the most exciting emerging technologies involve the interaction of light at the smallest levels. These groups are working with sub-micron structures and devices with a range of applications, including biological work that is set to create a new wave of medical advancement.

Optical Fibres:

The history of the optic fibre is closely linked to the ORC, and today the innovation continues as new fibre designs and techniques continue to be developed.

Fundamental Photonics:

Many of the ORC's greatest achievements come from exploring the fundamentals of optics and quantum electronics. These groups are improving the understanding of light and matter to feed our own insatiable appetite for discovery.

Optical Networks and Systems:

Historically, the ORC has participated in the key innovations that enable the worldwide optical networks. This work is continuing today, as new techniques push out the boundaries of communication speed and cost.

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