Vacancies in the Astro Group
There are currently no faculty positions available.
FellowshipsWe welcome applications for externally funded fellowships such as STFC, Royal Society, ERC or personal Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowship awards to be held at Leeds.
There is currently a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Star Formation advertised to work with Dr Lumsden and Prof Oudmaijer. Please see the main University website for details.
The astrophysics group welcomes applications for PhD study, see the postgraduate research pages on the main physics site for the list of proposed projects and details on sources of funding.
For 2017 starters we have two priority projects that are detailed below:
- Theoretical Studies of the Effect of Massive Stars on the Interstellar Medium
Dr Julian Pittard
Massive stars are relatively rare but have a completely disproportionate influence on the surrounding galaxy, through their powerful winds and supernova explosions, and their intense emission of ultraviolet radiation. Nowhere is this more important than the stellar nurseries where new stars are being born. Massive stars are thought to be effective at destroying these environments, and thus at limiting the rate of star formation in galaxies.
In this project you will use state-of-the-art computational fluid dynamics codes to simulate the interaction of massive stars with their surrounding environment. The degree of coupling of the winds, supernova explosions, and radiation with a clumpy, porous molecular environment is currently poorly understood, and this study will yield significant new insights into these processes.
- Molecular Shocks in the Interstellar Medium
Dr Sven Van Loo
Prof. Tom Hartquist
Molecular clouds are large reservoirs of gas and dust, which collapse under gravity to form dense star-forming cores. As stars form, jets and winds are produced and interact with the molecular cloud surrounding them. Shocks are then driven into the clouds sweeping up material. Observations often reveal bow-shaped structures, but the nature and structure of these shocks depends strongly on the local ionisation fraction of the gas and the magnetic field. The feedback from the outflows determines whether stars continue to form within molecular clouds.
Often SiO emission is associated with shocks propagating through molecular clouds and it has been the subject of extensive observational programs. The presence of silicon in the gas phase is attributed to sputtering of silicon from dust grains and to grain-grain interactions. We have developed a time-dependent numerical code to calculate plane-parallel shock structures and the resulting SiO emission from grain sputtering. Currently, grain-grain interactions are not included in the code. Furthermore, bow shock structures are reproduced from a superposition of one-dimensional shocks and not as a coherent, self-consistent structure.
The aim of this project is: 1. to include additional physical processes such as grain-grain collisions in the current numerical code. 2. to expand the one-dimensional shock model to a self-consistent bow shock model. The results of the numerical studies are to be compared with observations of molecular outflows.
A full list of PhD projects in the School of Physics and Astronomy can be found here. Applicants are encouraged to contact potential supervisors by email before applying.