Cohort 2

Our second cohort of 16 students joined us in September 2020

Alex Baddeley


I’m Alex, I’m from Hereford, a small city in the West Midlands.

Before coming to university, I worked at an aerospace company, where I was part of the Antenna/RF design departments for 5 years.

After leaving industry, I’ve gone on to study a BEng and MSc in Electronics at Cardiff University, focusing on the RF and communications side.

My PhD Project is supervised by Dr Roberto Quaglia and is sponsored by Qorvo Inc. and it focuses on characterisation, modelling and design of mm-wave GaN and GaAs Power amplifiers.

By exploiting state of the art measurement systems at Cardiff that offer the ability to measure mm-wave device waveforms. This project aims to provide incremental improvements in measurement accuracy, device model scope and an efficiency enhanced design of a mm-wave power amplifier in GaAs technology for satellite communication applications.

Richard Brown

Hi, my name is Richard and I’m originally from Southampton. I came to Cardiff three years ago to do a Bachelor’s Degree in physics, not really knowing what a compound semiconductor was but thinking it sounded really cool with important real world impact.

In the third year I was able to complete a project based around compound semiconductors in which I simulated a Gallium Arsenide based device with the aim to detect skin cancers using a technique found in retina imaging known as optical coherence tomography.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Dr Qiang Li of Cardiff University with support from IQE.  My preliminary project title is: MOVPE growth of Sb-containing alloys for strategic short-wave and mid-wave infrared applications.

Outside of University I spend most of my time playing guitar in various bands which has given me the opportunity to perform all across the UK, record two original EPs and be featured on national TV and radio.

Arthur Collier

Hello, I’m Arthur, I grew up near Brighton before studying MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester. During my degree, I participated in projects involving both semiconductor fabrication process development and the application of compound semiconductor magnetic sensors. For my Ph.D. research, I joined the Centre for High Frequency Engineering (CHFE) at Cardiff University, where my project is supervised by Prof. K. Elgaid and supported by the Compound Semiconductor Applications (CSA) Catapult.

My project encompasses the design, fabrication, and characterisation of microwave/mm-wave electronic devices on Gallium Nitride (GaN) semiconductor substrates. The primary aim of the project is to quantify how the material properties of dielectric thin films, such as amorphous silicon nitride (SiNx), influence the performance of electronic devices, ranging from integrated capacitors to transistor switches.

Calum Dear

My name is Calum, I grew up in Bristol then moved to Cardiff for 5 years where I completed my undergraduate in physics and masters in compound semiconductor physics. I now live in London, currently in my second year of Ph.D. study at UCL.

I am part of the molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) group, supervised by Prof. Huiyun Liu at UCL’s electronic and electrical engineering department. My project at macro scale is the development of conventional-band (C-band) quantum dot (QD) materials by MBE.

In my first year of study, my group and I calibrated and optimised growth of InAs/InAlGaAs/InP(001) QD materials in the C-band with promising photoluminescence characteristics at room temperature. In my second year, I aim to use these materials to develop electrically-pumped broad-area and ridge waveguide lasers by conventional fabrication methods at the London Centre for Nanotechnology. The ultimate objective of this project is to demonstrate such devices monolithically integrated on Si(001) by MBE.

Abi Enderson

Hi, my name’s Abi. I grew up in Devon where I completed A levels in maths, physics and chemistry, and went on to study my BSc in Physics with Astronomy at Cardiff University. Towards the end of my degree, I specialised in condensed matter physics and specifically semiconductors and their applications.

For my final year project, I created a simulation to model the properties of compound semiconductor waveguides based off their dimensions and refractive indices.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Dr Samuel Shutts of Cardiff University with support from CSA Catapult.  My preliminary project title is: High-performance optical sources for photonic integrated platforms.

Outside of my studies I enjoy running, hiking and practising yoga.

Daniel Johnson

Hi I’m Dan, originally from Essex. I completed a BSc in Physics at Hertfordshire and an MSc in Advanced Materials Science at UCL (Following time as a science teacher and a PGCE at Oxford) . My MSc project was the characterisation of a novel single crystal transparent conducting oxide candidate using PXRD, XPS, and transport measurements.

I really enjoy getting hands on and spending time in the lab and I am excited to develop my skills further in the CDT program. 

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Dr Jessica Boland of University of Manchester.  My preliminary project title is: Exploring the nanoscale optoelectronic properties of low-dimensional materials via terahertz spectroscopy and near-field terahertz microscopy.

Outside of my research and studies, I enjoy playing snooker, working on my own electronic projects, and anything outdoors with friends

James Meiklejohn

Hi, my name is James, and I’m originally from Edinburgh.

For my undergraduate degree I studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge, specialising in Astrophysics during my final year. After graduating, I moved to London to work as a software engineer at a startup designing wireless sensors.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Dr Samuel Shutts of Cardiff University with support from National Physical Laboratory.  My preliminary project title is: Compound Semiconductor Optical Sources for Atomic Sensors.

I enjoy building things, running and cycling, and anything to do with bagpipes.

Khaya Mtunzi

Hi, my name is Khaya and I’m originally from Surrey. I completed my undergraduate degree in Physics at Swansea University and an MSc in Data-Intensive Astrophysics at Cardiff University the following year. I have been fortunate enough to gain a wealth of experience in astronomy and computer programming from both. 

My MSc project involved investigating the hexagonal wurtzite crystal structure of a gallium nitride thin film using the Fast Fourier Transform and correlating its surface morphology to its crystal structure. I hope to further enhance my understanding of semiconductor materials for space applications. 

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Professor Huiyun Liu of UCL.  My preliminary project title is: III-V quantum dot lasers grown on patterned silicon and SOI substrates by MBE.

Outside of studying I enjoy playing the piano and guitar and trying to learn new languages.

Diyar Othman

Hello, my name is Diyar and I am originally from Cyprus. I graduated from University of Manchester in 2020 with a BSc in Physics.

Before my third year started, I did a summer internship at the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre, where I had a mainly public facing role. My third year project was on the future of energy, where I focused on the possibility of the world going 100% renewable by 2050. I did a case study in North Cyprus and focused mainly on solar and wind energy.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Dr Bo Hou of Cardiff University with support from Huawei Cambridge.  My preliminary project title is: Integrated Colloidal Quantum Dot (QD) smart optoelectronic devices for the Internet of Things (IoT).

Outside of physics, I enjoy doing any kinds of sports, listening to and playing music and reading.

Iwan Pullen

Hi I’m Iwan, I’m from North Wales and I graduated from Cardiff University with a BSc in physics with astronomy. Although I selected the astronomy route for my undergraduate degree, I also had the opportunity to study condensed matter physics. It was through this I developed my interest in semiconductors and their applications. 

My final year project involved the writing of a program in Python to fit spectral energy density curves to a supernova at different points across a 2 year observing period. Treating the supernova as an emitting blackbody, I was able to determine the temperature and radius evolutions and make estimates of the total energy released in the explosion.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Professor Sir Michael Pepper of UCL.  My preliminary project title is: Quantum Integrated Circuits and Electrons Spins in Semiconductor Nanostructures.

Outside of physics, I am a member of Cardiff University Triathlon Club and can usually be found in a swimming pool, on my bike or composing, playing or listening to music. 

Ben Salmond

Hi, my name is Ben and I’m from Carnoustie in Scotland. I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Strathclyde in Physics.

My PhD project is focused on the development of new designs and fabrication techniques for distributed feedback lasers on indium phosphide. I am supervised by Dr Samuel Shutts of Cardiff University with support from the Compound Semiconductor Centre.

Outside of academia, I enjoy playing golf, road cycling and cooking.

Wesley Sampson

Hi, my name is Wesley. I am originally from Ringwood, just outside Bournemouth and I have a BEng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, a MSc in Compound Semiconductor Electronics, and an MSc in Compound Semiconductor Physics.

My current PhD work is on high frequency Gallium Nitride (GaN) High Electron Mobility Transistors (HEMTs) with short gate lengths targeting future communication systems

Chris Walsh

Hi I’m Chris, I studied MEng Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester.

For my third-year individual project I investigated solution based processes to manufacture thin film transistors. This involved manufacturing the transistors in a clean room, testing the devices and then analysing the data to determine their characteristics using labview and matlab.

My MEng team project aimed to develop a Industry 4.0 solution for the university’s mechanical workshop. This involved the development of both embedded software and cloud computing to extract and manipulate machinery data to analyse trends over time.

For my PhD Project, I will be supervised by Professor Mohamed Missous of University of Manchester with support from Linwave.  My preliminary project title is: Asymmetrical Spacer Layer Tunnel Diode (ASPAT) for zero power, microwave millimetre wave band detection applications.

Join us! 

The Centre for Doctoral Training is currently funded for five intakes, from 2019-2023. If you would like to join us, visit our how to apply page and get in touch if you have any questions.

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