PhD Students


t: +44 2380592959

Charlie Turner

Charlie is a PhD student under the supervision of Dr Corin Gawith, Dr Lewis Carpenter, Dr Sam Berry and group leader Prof Peter smith.

Charlie graduated from the University of Southampton in 2017 with an MPhys – Physics with nanotechnology.

His PhD project revolves around creating devices for mid IR quasi-phase matching in nonlinear optical materials such as Gallium Arsenide.


t: +44 2380599253

Qazi Salman Ahmed

Salman has done his BSc and Masters in Physics with academic distinctions from Pakistan. He joined Optoelectronics Research Centre (ORC) as an international PhD student in 2019. He is part of Optical Engineering and Photonics group and doing research under the supervision of Dr. James Gates, Dr. Paul Gow and Prof. Peter G.R. Smith. His research is mainly focused on UV written Bragg gratings for quantum applications.


t:+44 2380599253

Matt D’Souza

Matt is a PhD student researching integration of atom/ion traps as part of the QCS Hub. He is under the supervision of Dr James Gates, Prof Peter G.R. Smith and Dr Paul Gow.

Matt graduated in 2020 from the University of Southampton with an MPhys in Physics, with his masters project on SHG being completed under the supervision of Dr Sam Berry and Dr James Gates.

He teaches BSL for SignSoc and likes long walks/cycles. If the weather is bad, he’ll be playing games or occasionally cooking.


t: +44 2380599253

Noelia Palomar Davidson

Noelia is a PhD student in the Optical Engineering and Quantum Photonics group, under the supervision of Dr. Corin Gawith and Prof. Peter Smith. She studied at the University of Southampton, graduating with an MPhys in Physics with Nanotechnology in 2020 (what a year).

Noelia completed her Masters dissertation in the Molecular Biophotonics & Imaging Group, working with planar waveguides, which led to her current project.

Her research is based on using PPLN waveguides for imaging and sensing applications. In her free time she enjoys cooking, or reading a good book.


James Washak

James Washak is currently a PhD student who only recently joined The Optical Engineering & Quantum Photonics Group at the University of Southampton in September of 2020. Prior to this James completed his master’s degree at the University of Southampton and his bachelor’s degree at The University of Exeter both in the subject of electronic engineering. During his undergraduate degree, James published his first paper based on his undergraduate dissertation on bidirectional wireless charging which was published as part of 2019 wireless power week conference in London. James’ current PhD based on condition monitoring of epicyclical gears using optical fibre sensors and is being done in partnership with General Electric aviation with the aim of the results of this research to be used to enhance helicopter safety. 


Alex Flint

Alex is a PhD student working on UV writing fibre Bragg gratings for non-linear fibre optics and quantum applications under the supervision of Dr Rex Bannerman, Dr James Gates and Prof. Peter G.R Smith. He graduated from the University of Bristol with a BSc in Physics in 2019 and completed an MSc (R) in Physics at Bristol in 2021. He spends his free time bouldering and eating pizza.