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Research Associate in novel light-matter interactions (fixed-term post)

Job title Research Associate in novel light-matter interactions (fixed-term post)

Department Physics

Salary Starting from £35,333, rising to £42,155

Grade Grade 7

SOC Code - Visa Requirements 2119

Placed on Thursday 04 August 2022

Closing date Sunday 04 September 2022

Interview date To be confirmed

Reference CC9700

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Applications are invited for a Research Associate to join the Centre for Photonics and Photonic Materials carrying out research into novel light-matter interactions at the nanoscale.

About the role:

Working in our state-of-the-art photonics cleanroom, you will:

  • use a variety of our advanced laser systems and photonic characterization techiques
  • formulate scientific questions and answering them by building optical experiments
  • have the chance to program robotic experimental rigs and to conduct numerical simulations using a commercial Maxwell equation solver. 
  • be guiding junior PhD students.

You will:

  • drive forward the goals of research projects that exploit the unique photonic properties of chiral nanomaterials and metamaterials (e.g. plasmonic, semiconducting, dielectric, and hybrid nanostructures).
  • carry out experiments with ultrafast laser sources, devise methods to build robust optical rigs for nonlinear spectroscopy, and collaborate with researchers using your rigs to discover new light scattering effects.
  • contribute to theoretical work, write up and disseminate results, and liaise with other project partners to build up a competitive publication record.

You will also have the opportunity for supervising the research of graduate students, as well as develop new avenues of research in our cutting-edge laboratories. 

About you:

You will hold (or be close to obtaining) a doctorate in physics or related field with excellent laboratory skills, applicable in optics or laser physics. 

An interest in communicating science to the public, robotics or digital art would be an advantage. Experience in any of the following: nonlinear optics, plasmonics, metamaterials, programming experimental equipment and/or chirality chirality will also be an advantage.

About us:

The Department of Physics is research-led and ranked highly in the UK. We are committed to providing a supportive and inclusive working environment. We are working to improve the present gender balance within the Department, and particularly welcome applications from women.

Further information:

This position is offered for a fixed-term period of up to 3 years.

Informal enquiries should be directed to Prof Ventsislav Valev (;, however, please submit your application via the University website.


[1] Third harmonic Mie scattering from semiconductor nanohelices, L. Ohnoutek, et al. Nat. Photonics 16, 126-133 (2022).
[2] Optical activity in third-harmonic Rayleigh scattering: a new route for measuring chirality, L. Ohnoutek, et al. Laser. Photonics. Rev. 12, 2100235 (2021).
[3] Single Nanoparticle Chiroptics in a Liquid: Optical Activity in Hyper-Rayleigh Scattering from Au Helicoids, L. Ohnoutek, et al. Nano Lett. 20, 5792–5798 (2020).
[4] First Observation of Optical Activity in Hyper-Rayleigh Scattering, J.T. Collins, et al. Phys Rev. X 9, 011024 (2019)

What we can offer you:

We are an equal opportunities employer and have an excellent international reputation with staff from over 60 different nations. We have made a positive commitment towards gender equality and intersectionality receiving a Silver Athena SWAN award

A family-friendly University with an increasingly agile workforce, we are open to flexible working arrangements. We’re also proud to be a disability confident leader and are happy to discuss any reasonable adjustments you may require. 

We offer:

  • a very generous employer contributory pension scheme;
  • generous annual leave allowance with an additional 5 discretionary days so that you can enjoy a positive work life balance;
  • an excellent reward package that recognises the talents of our diverse workforce; 
  • a wide range of personal and professional development opportunities.
  • a number of support options available for new and existing staff to help with the cost of some immigration expenses which you may be eligible for. Please visit the following webpages for more information:

     - Relocation Procedure

     - Visa Reimbursement Scheme

     - Interest-Free Loan Scheme

Our campus is surrounded by beautiful countryside, and the City of Bath with its historic charm and social activity only a short distance away creates an excellent environment in which to work. Find out from our staff what makes the University of Bath a great place to work. Follow us @UniofBath and @UniofBathJobs on Twitter for more information.

We aim to be an inclusive university, where difference is celebrated, respected and encouraged. We truly believe that diversity of experience, perspectives, and backgrounds leads to a better environment for our employees and students, creating a learning environment and organisational culture that enhances health and wellbeing across our community. We are very proud to have recently received Ambassadors for Autism certification and are an accredited Disability Confident Leader; committed to building disability confidence and supporting disabled staff.

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Further details:

If you think you may require a visa to work in the UK you should refer to our guidance on the Skilled Worker Visa before embarking on a job application to ensure that you understand the requirements for sponsorship. You may be eligible to work in the UK via other alternative visa routes such as the Global Talent Visa or by having Settlement / ILR, please refer to our Staff Immigration webpages for further details.

Update to our application process:

We are constantly seeking to reduce the unconscious bias that enters any assessment process, with the goal of creating an inclusive and equal assessment process. To support this the personal details of all applicants will be withheld at the initial shortlisting stage.