Research course

Gravitational Physics

Institution
Cardiff University · Cardiff School of Physics and Astronomy
Qualifications
PhDMPhil

Entry requirements

Suitable for graduates with a first or upper-second class honours degree in Physics, Astrophysics, Mathematics, Electronics or a related subject, depending on the research area.

Months of entry

January, April, July, October

Course content

The Gravitational Physics Group is one of the largest research groups in the School of Physics and Astronomy. We focus on the detection and study of gravitational waves from astrophysical systems such as black-hole and neutron-star binaries, supernovae, and gamma-ray bursts. Group members are also leaders in the field of numerical relativity, simulating collisions of black holes using large computer clusters.

The Group co-founded the British-German GEO 600 gravitational-wave detection project and is a leading member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration. We are active members of collaborations studying the scientific benefits of the proposed space-based LISA system and the future Einstein Telescope (ET). As a part of this research we develop novel algorithms and software that have become standard search tools. Cardiff also acts as a data centre for GEO 600 and LIGO, with the data analysed in-house using large computer clusters.

Other theoretical research focuses on quantum processes in the early Universe, cosmic microwave and gravitational wave backgrounds, the formation, evolution and nature of largescale structure in the Universe, and alternative formulations of general relativity. We have developed an on-line game called Black Hole Hunter to illustrate how we look for gravitational wave signals from merging black hole binaries. The challenge is to listen to a set of audio tracks and identify the one containing the signal from a black hole merger.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    part time
    60-84 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    36-48 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MPhil
    part time
    24-36 months
      full time
      12-24 months

      Course contact details

      Name
      Postgraduate Enquiries
      Email
      PostgradEnquiries@cardiff.ac.uk