Doctoral Studies

Wave and particle optics - Field

Brief description of field

Doctoral study in the field of Wave and Particle Optics is intended for graduates of physical disciplines of mathematical-physical and natural sciences faculties of universities and graduates of physically oriented study fields of technical universities. It covers a wide range of physical problems from various areas of light and particle optics such as diffraction and Fourier optics, fiber optics, manipulation of microscopic objects by light (optical tweezers), Raman spectroscopy, polarization optics and ellipsometry, optics of layered structures with quantum wells and superlattices, optics of thin film, X-ray diffraction, wave aspects of electron optics and electron holography, modeling of electron optical elements and systems, and atomic optics.

Collaborating institutions

Faculty of Science of MU collaborates with other institutions on the doctoral studies in the field of Wave and Particle Optics. This is in particular the Institute of Scientific Instruments of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic where a number of doctoral theses take place and where there are many of our external supervisors. In the case of dissertation theses from light optics, we also cooperate with the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Brno University of Technology, and in the area of electron optics and microscopy we cooperate with companies in Brno that develop and produce electron microscopes (Tescan, FEI).

 

Profile of a typical graduate

The graduate gains a deep knowledge of the physics of light or charged particles, which includes wide field of physics from optic through magnetism and electricity to quantum mechanics and instrumentation. The graduate also has practical experience with the experimentation and construction of laboratory devices, including the various technologies of this field. His/her physical education and gained experience are comparable to European standards. He/she is ready to work in his specialization, but at the same time he/she can easily find job in other physical disciplines or at the interface between natural and technical sciences. The graduate will not have a problem with finding work because there are many companies in the Brno region that are very successful in this particular physical specialization. He/she is ready to work at a university, Academy of Sciences or in research institutions. The graduate may  even find work in less traditional areas such as government positions dealing with education and science.

Requirements for applicants

(A) Professional Requirements:

  • Graduation in master or engineering studies of the relevant field
  • Knowledge at the level of state final examination in Master's degree in Physics at the Faculty of Science, Masaryk University with emphasis on optics, electricity and magnetism, quantum mechanics and physics of solids, including the corresponding mathematical disciplines.

(B) Language Requirements:

  • Active knowledge of English, ability to work with professional text in English

(C) Other requirements:

  • Motivational discussion about the candidate's idea of the dissertation topic

Assessment of admission examination and necessary conditions for admission:

  • Part (A) – scientific expertise – it is necessary to achieve 40 points out of 60 possible
  • Part (B) – Language skills – it is necessary to achieve 20 points out of 40 possible
  • Part (C) –  Motivational debate – not evaluated by points

 

Study requirements and completion of studies

The standard length of study is 4 years, the minimum credit value of the study is 240 credits. The form of study is either full-time or combined. According to section 47 (4) of the MU Study and Examination Regulations (SaER), the study is terminated by the

  • State Doctoral Exam, and
  • defense of the dissertation.

The course of study is governed by the Individual study plan (see below) and the relevant SaER regulations (especially Part Four). Participation in teaching is subject to the Article 9 of SaER, with the following exceptions:

  • participation in the specialized seminars of the physical institute of which the supervisor is a member or, where appropriate, the seminars of other institutes whose subject is related to the topic of doctoral dissertation (specified by the supervisor) is compulsory in the full-time and combined form
  • participation in the teaching of the subject Teaching assistance is compulsory in both full-time and combined form within the scope determined by the supervisor,
  • participation in the teaching of other, especially experimental subjects important from the point of view of the dissertation focus, or one-time lectures by visiting experts, directly related to the topic of dissertation; the list of these subjects is set by the supervisor.

Individual Study Plan

The Individual Study Plan (ISP) is developed by the student together with his/her supervisor for each semester, and at the beginning of the study he/she will also create a plan for the whole study. The supervisor is primarily responsible for the content of the ISP. Once a year, the plan is approved by the Doctoral Committee. The supervisor will determine the extent of lectures and seminars from MU or even other universities. The Individual Study Plan  contains the following items (not necessarily all of them in each semester):

  • Profiling subjects : includes lectures and seminars with general physical themes related to the dissertation work and specialized seminars and seminars of the relevant physics institute of the faculty.
  • Teaching assistance: cooperation in teaching at the faculty. The course is finished with a credit given by a supervisor or a teacher, whose teaching meets the requirements of the subject.
  • Literature Study: The subject is completed by a colloquium (the examiner is the supervisor or a teacher appointed by the chairperson of the Doctoral Committee), or by a credit.
  • Language Competence: The student either enrolls in a language course in two semesters, or there can also be just a demonstration of linguistic competence through written and oral exams without attending classes. Alternatively, the language skills can be demonstrated by writing a publication in English of by giving a talk in English; the evaluation is given by the supervisor in this case.
  • Preparation of publication: this includes the preparation of publications in reviewed foreign journals and conference presentations.
  • Internship: when decided by the supervisor, the student enrolls an internship at another, mostly foreign, university or institute.
  • Preparation of dissertation thesis: includes the preparation and regular review of the dissertation thesis.

State Doctoral Examination

Conditions for applying for the state doctoral examination:

  • acquiring at least half of the minimum credit value of the study and obtaining at least half of the credit value for subjects directly related to the dissertation (these subjects are marked by the supervisor  in the ISP)
  • passing all the compulsory and elective subjects of the individual study plan of the first four semesters of study
  • successful fulfillment of language requirements in English according to Article 30 (4) c) of SaER
  • presenting list of publications and conference presentations as attachments for the application for doctoral state exam

State Doctoral Examination – the scope, extent, and required knowledge

The state doctoral examination investigates the scope and depth of candidate's knowledge of general mathematical and physical disciplines related to the subject of the dissertation and his/her ability to approach creatively to solving general problems. In accordance with this, the exam prerequisites for each student are determined in advance. In addition to the knowledge at the level of the Master's State Exam, the knowledge of the given specialization of the dissertation topic at the current level are also required, as well as a general overview in the range of two essential textbooks or monographs, such as L. D. Landau's and E. M. Lifshitz's  Course of Theoretical Physics, and, for students with a focus on light optics, Principles of Optics by Born and Wolf.

Thesis requirements

The PhD thesis must contain original results published or accepted for publication in international peer-reviewed journals. The thesis may comprise of a set of published papers or manuscripts accepted for publication. The thesis may be submitted in Czech or in English. If the student presents results of scientific team work, he/she must clearly indicate what work he/she has done as the main author. A written statement from each co-author must also be included in the thesis. For successful completion of doctoral studies, two publications in reviewed journals are usually required.

General areas for PhD theses:

Examples of dissertation areas from wave and particle optics:

  • forces of light on matter, optical tweezers
  • interference, diffraction and Fourier optics
  • light propagation in optical fibers and imaging by them
  • polarization optics and ellipsometry
  • X-ray diffraction on periodic single- and multi-dimensional crystalline structures
  • optics  of thin film
  • wave aspects of electron optics, electron holography
  • modeling and simulation of electron-optical elements and systems
  • Methods of Lie algebra in charged-particle optics
  • Study of nanometer-size objects on solid surfaces using AFM and optical methods
  • aberrations in electron optics

The actual list of open dissertation topics for the given academic year is provided on the website of the faculty.

Individual study plan

  • The Individual Study Plan (ISP) is developed by the student together with his/her supervisor for each semester, and at the beginning of the study he/she will also create a plan for the whole study. The supervisor is primarily responsible for the content of the ISP. Once a year, the plan is approved by the Doctoral Committee. The supervisor will determine the extent of lectures and seminars from MU or even other universities. The Individual Study Plan  contains the following items (not necessarily all of them in each semester):

  • Profiling subjects : includes lectures and seminars with general physical themes related to the dissertation work and specialized seminars and seminars of the relevant physics institute of the faculty.
  • Teaching assistance: cooperation in teaching at the faculty. The course is finished with a credit given by a supervisor or a teacher, whose teaching meets the requirements of the subject.
  • Literature Study: The subject is completed by a colloquium (the examiner is the supervisor or a teacher appointed by the chairperson of the Doctoral Committee), or by a credit.
  • Language Competence: The student either enrolls in a language course in two semesters, or there can also be just a demonstration of linguistic competence through written and oral exams without attending classes. Alternatively, the language skills can be demonstrated by writing a publication in English of by giving a talk in English; the evaluation is given by the supervisor in this case.
  • Preparation of publication: this includes the preparation of publications in reviewed foreign journals and conference presentations.
  • Internship: when decided by the supervisor, the student enrolls an internship at another, mostly foreign, university or institute.
  • Preparation of dissertation thesis: includes the preparation and regular review of the dissertation thesis.

List of members of doctoral committee

List of supervisors

Commission for state doctoral exams and defenses

List of current doctoral topics

Department pages


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