Quantum Engineering (EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training)

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Run by Faculty of Science Faculty of Engineering
Awards available PhD
Programme length Four years full-time
Part-time study available No, full-time only
Open to international students Yes
Number of places 10
Start date October 2016

Programme overview

Bristol's Quantum Engineering CDT offers a unique training and development experience for those wishing to pursue a career in the emerging quantum technologies industry. It supports the understanding of sound fundamental scientific principles and much more.

Our students are given the opportunity to put their burgeoning knowledge of science and engineering into practice from the outset. From the first year of study, they are placed in a state-of-the-art laboratory environment and asked to undertake both individual and group research projects.

This 'cohort' approach to learning - through peer-to-peer teaching, group lab projects and research challenges - creates an environment that is both stimulating and empowering. It supports students in the development of leadership skills and in the creation of personal support networks, and offers a first-class foundation for developing and completing a PhD project.

The centre's core staff are world-leading scientists and engineers with a proven track record in passing that knowledge and expertise on to others.

This is supplemented by access to a broad technology base as well as a network of both academic and industrial partners across the world - with whom students actively collaborate by way of secondments and conference attendance.

This, together with training in a variety of complementary skills such as entrepreneurship and project management, provides an unrivalled opportunity to learn and understand the foundations of quantum physics and then apply them to real world situations.

Fees for 2016/17

Full time fees


Fees quoted are provisional, per annum and subject to annual increase.

Funding for 2016/17

Enhanced EPSRC studentships covering fees and living costs are available to UK/EU students. Funding is also available for exceptional international students, as well as support for those who are pursuing their own funding opportunities

Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.

Programme structure

The aim of the first year training programme is to furnish all students with expertise in the underpinning theory and engineering approaches needed in your research. With access to state-of-the art laboratories and a unique cohort-style approach to learning, you will be immersed in an environment which supports a research focus from the very beginning.

The following is a summary of the core elements that make up Year 1:

  • Foundations of quantum information and quantum communications
  • Classical and quantum optics
  • Systems engineering
  • Advanced quantum information theory
  • Quantum electronic devices: concepts, design and fabrication.

The main outcome from years 2-4 of this programme will be the completion of a PhD research project, which will be selected by you. You will also be exposed to a wide range of learning experiences including:

  • A core module on ‘Enterprise, exploitation and entrepreneurship’ delivered by our academic and industrial partners covering a range of complementary topics such as commercialisation, intellectual property, management, entrepreneurship and enterprise.
  • Cohort learning modules using peer-to-peer teaching skills to further students’ understanding of key topics: quantum architectures; applications of quantum technologies; quantum chemistry; cryptography; and combinatorics.
  • A public outreach activity to support students in promoting awareness of science to a wider audience, offering invaluable experience in public engagement.
  • Industrial secondment at one of our partner organisations to develop an understanding of business practices and processes, offer exposure to new ways of working, and provide access to industry-focused research projects.
  • Academic visits and secondments to support students in building collaborations with academic groups, both in the UK and internationally.

Entry requirements

We are seeking candidates with backgrounds in physical science, engineering, computer science and mathematics. Applicants should have an upper-second class degree in a relevant subject (or equivalent qualification).

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

Application method Online application form and interview
English language requirements Profile E
Further information about English language requirements
Admissions statement Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Research groups

Further information about the Centre's research groups.

Staff profiles

The QECDT Core Team

Professor Noah Linden, (Professor), Quantum information.

Mr Simon McIntosh-Smith, (Reader), Algorithms; power efficient computing.

Professor Jeremy O'Brien, (Royal Academy of Engineering Chair in Emerging Technologies, Director CQP), Information science and technology; nanostructures; physics.

Professor John Rarity, (Professor), Optical communications; photons; quantum gate design.

Professor Mark Thompson, (Professor), Experimental quantum optics; photonic devices; photonic integration.

Dr Peter Turner, (Lecturer), Quantum estimation, characterisation and verification; quantum information theory.

How to apply
Application deadline:

Please see our website for deadlines. Interviews for an October start are likely to occur in spring. International applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

International students

Find out more about becoming a student at Bristol, and the support we offer to international students.

I chose Bristol because of its outstanding academic reputation. It's reassuring to be taught by people who truly love their subject - their passion becomes contagious.


REF 2014 results

Categories 9 and 15 apply. Please see full REF 2014 results for the University of Bristol.

Results are from the most recent UK-wide assessment of research quality, conducted by HEFCE. More about REF 2014 results.

Bristol Doctoral College

The Bristol Doctoral College facilitates and supports doctoral training and researcher development across the University.

Get in touch

Lin Burden Postgraduate Administrator Phone: +44 (0) 117 954 0112 Email: quantum-engineering@bristol.ac.uk

Quantum Engineering Centre for Doctoral Training
Nanoscience and Quantum Information Building
University of Bristol
Tyndall Avenue
Bristol BS8 1FD http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics http://www.bristol.ac.uk/quantum-engineering/


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