University of Copenhagen, Niels Bohr International Academy

466 18175
Position ID:UCPH-NBIA-PHD_HECN_2 [#18175]
Position Title: PhD in high-energy cosmic neutrino physics at NBIA
Position Type:Student programs
Position Location:Copenhagen, Copenhagen 2100, Denmark [map]
Subject Areas: Astrophysics / particle astrophysics, High Energy Astrophysics
High Energy Physics / Neutrino physics and Astrophysics, Theoretical Particle Physics
Cosmology/Particle Astrophysics
Appl Deadline:2021/04/15 6:00PMhelp popup* finished (2021/02/21, finished 2021/11/20, listed until 2021/08/20)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***

The Niels Bohr International Academy invites applications for a PhD studentship in high-energy neutrino physics with cosmic neutrinos.

The preferred starting date is October 01, 2021 (earlier dates can be discussed).

Applicants are requested to submit their electronic applications including a cover letter, CV, research statement, BSc and MSc academic transcripts, and two reference letters via AcademicJobsOnline.

In order to receive full consideration, complete applications should be received by April 15, 2021.

Pushing neutrino physics to the cosmic frontier

What is Nature like at its most fundamental level? What are its building blocks and how do they interact? What are its organizing principles? These questions lie at the core of Physics, science, and human curiosity. During the last century, we steadily found deeper answers, using increasingly powerful particle accelerators that revealed fundamental particles, interactions, and symmetries. Yet, ample territory remains unexplored at higher energies, ripe for discoveries.

Today, accelerators still churn out valuable data, but, so far, fail to guide us in furthering our view of fundamental physics. Observing particle processes at higher energies would provide guidance, but they lie beyond the reach of accelerator technology. Fortunately, Nature itself provides a way forward: we must turn from man-made particle accelerators to naturally occurring cosmic accelerators. These are extreme phenomena --- exploding and colliding stars, black holes --- that emit particles with energies millions of times higher than man-made accelerators. Among these, neutrinos stand out as incisive probes of particle physics.

During your PhD, you will learn how to harness the vast potential of high-energy cosmic neutrinos to unearth the particle physics that awaits at the highest, unexplored energies. You will look especially for signs of new physics, beyond the Standard Model.

The principal supervisor will be Assistant Prof. Mauricio Bustamante (INSPIRE profile) at the Niels Bohr International Academy. Your PhD will be part of the project “Pushing Neutrino Physics to the Cosmic Frontier”, funded by the Villum Fonden (project no. 29388).

About the PhD program

The duration of the PhD position is 3 years. During that time, some of the topics you will explore are:

  • Neutrino interactions with matter, both baryonic and dark
  • Neutrino interactions with neutrinos, enhanced by BSM effects
  • Neutrino decay, including into new particles
  • Tests of more general neutrino properties, including broken Lorentz and CPT symmetries

During your PhD you will learn how to:

  • Predict Standard-Model and beyond-the-Standard-Model effects at high neutrino energies
  • Test your predictions by computing the associated expected signals at neutrino telescopes
  • Use experimental data (e.g., from the IceCube neutrino telescope) to make new measurements of a predicted effect or to place new limits on it
  • Properly account for all relevant particle-physics and astrophysical uncertainties involved, using statistical methods
  • Communicate your research effectively, in written and oral form

Your key tasks as a PhD student will be:

  • To manage and carry through your research project
  • To attend PhD courses
  • To write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
  • To disseminate your research orally in the form of seminars and other oral contributions
  • To stay at an external research institution for a few months, preferably abroad
  • To do service work for the University, primarily by teaching Physics courses

The position is fully funded. The selected student will receive an attractive monthly salary as well as travel funds for research visits and conferences.

Scientific environment

The Niels Bohr Institute (NBI) was inaugurated March 3, 1921, by Prof. Niels Bohr. Currently, we are approximately 130 researchers, 70 administrative and technical staff, 100 PhD students, and Masters and undergraduate 400 students. The NBI is part of the Faculty of Science (SCIENCE) at the University of Copenhagen.

The Niels Bohr International Academy (NBIA) is an independent center of excellence hosted by the NBI. Its mission is to attract the best and the brightest to Denmark and provide the environment to enable breakthrough research in the physical sciences and mathematics, such as astroparticle physics, biophysics, condensed matter, quantum devices, particle physics, cosmology, and theoretical astrophysics. For an overview of all of the research areas at NBIA, see here.

The NBI is an international hub for neutrino research. It hosts the Neutrino Astrophysics group and the IceCube group. In joining, you will have a chance to interact with these groups on a regular basis.

The NBI has a vibrant working environment, with many weekly seminars, colloquia, and journal clubs, and frequent international visitors.

Application requirements

You must hold an MSc degree in particle or astroparticle physics with good results. You must have good English skills.

When assessing your qualifications, we will evaluate your grades, relevant work experience, and publications, if any. Work on a neutrino-related topic during your MSc thesis is preferable, but it is not a requirement.

Application documents and procedure

The application, in English, must be submitted electronically. Please include the following documentation:

  • Cover letter, max. 1 page (your motivation and background for applying for this PhD position)
  • Curriculum vitae (include a list of your publications here, if applicable)
  • Research statement, max. 2 pages (detailing your research experience and research interests for the future)
  • BSc and MSc academic transcripts (please indicate the grading system if it is not evident from the transcripts)

The University wishes its staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background. The primary criterion for the evaluation of candidates is scientific excellence.


For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor, Assistant Prof. Mauricio Bustamante, Niels Bohr International Academy (

General information about PhD programs at SCIENCE is available here.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
+45 2223 0566
The Niels Bohr International Academy
The Niels Bohr Institute
Blegdamsvej 17
Copenhagen, 2100