Work experience in the School of Physics & Astronomy

The School has some great opportunities, open to undergrad and MSc students:

Student Ambassador (paid) – 6 vacancies, closing date 15 Sep

Communications Rep (paid) – 2 vacancies, closing date 15 Sep

Physics Outreach Team Volunteers – 10 vacancies, closing date 22 Sep

Find out more on the School wiki

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Chocolate expertise

The science of what makes good chocolate has been revealed by researchers studying a 140-year-old mixing technique. The team in the University’s School of Physics and Astronomy have uncovered the physics behind the process responsible for creating chocolate’s distinctive smooth texture.

Scientists have uncovered the physics behind the process – known as conching – which is responsible for creating chocolate’s distinctive smooth texture. The findings may hold the key to producing confectionary with lower fat content, and could help make chocolate manufacturing more energy efficient. A team led by the University of Edinburgh studied mixtures resembling liquid chocolate created using the conching process, which was developed by Swiss confectioner Rodolphe Lindt in 1879.

Their analysis, which involved measuring the density of mixtures and how they flow at various stages of the process, suggests conching may alter the physical properties of the microscopic sugar crystals and other granular ingredients of chocolate. Until now, the science behind the process was poorly understood. The new research reveals that conching – which involves mixing ingredients for several hours – produces smooth molten chocolate by breaking down lumps of ingredients into finer grains and reducing friction between particles.

Before the invention of conching, chocolate had a gritty texture. This is because the ingredients form rough, irregular clumps that do not flow smoothly when mixed with cocoa butter using other methods, the team says. Their insights could also help improve processes used in other sectors – such as ceramics manufacturing and cement production – that rely on the mixing of powders and liquids.

The study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, involved a collaboration with researchers from New York University. The work in Edinburgh was funded by Mars Chocolate UK and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

For more information about science at Mars UK, visit their website.

Professor Wilson Poon, of the University of Edinburgh’s School of Physics and Astronomy, who led the study, said:

We hope our work can help reduce the amount of energy used in the conching process and lead to greener manufacturing of the world’s most popular confectionary product. By studying chocolate making, we have been able to gain new insights into the fundamental physics of how complex mixtures flow. This is a great example of how physics can build bridges between disciplines and sectors.”

AI Careers Fair – 19th June, UoE

AI Fair

Submit your CV, get on-the-spot interviews, participate in talks and workshops, meet leading AI companies such as Facebook and Microsoft, welcome to EdIntelligence’s AI Career Fair!

Do you use Artificial Intelligence techniques in your studies? Are thinking about working in the sector?

No matter if you are doing a PhD in Physics, studying AI in your Masters or are a curious Bachelor student, they welcome everyone with knowledge in Machine Learning, Deep Learning, Natural Language Processing, High-Performance Computing, Vision/ Imaging or anything related from all programmes!  At this career fair you can:

– meet companies such as Microsoft, Facebook, Lloyds Banking Group, Five AI and Skyscanner ( for a full list see our website: https://edintelligence.github.io/fair/companies.html)
– submit your CV beforehand to have companies contact you and increase your chance to…
– get an interview at the day through our on-the-spot interviews.
– listen to talks and workshops that are held throughout the day. (You can find a provisional schedule at https://edintelligence.github.io/fair/schedule.html)
– simply explore the AI company space from startups to large companies!

If you are a student or recent graduate from ANY university and interested in AI, sign up here https://edintelligence.github.io/fair

PS Use the Careers Service guides on interviews & CVs and get some feedback on your CV before you share with any employers.  The Careers Service is open through the summer

 

Employer focus: Newtyne

Newtyne Consultancy and Training is a Business Intelligence services company based in Edinburgh.

Newtyne recruits numerate graduates and train you up through an intensive training programme comprising five courses enabling you to obtain the SAS Certified Base Programmer qualification. Once the training is complete you will spend 52 weeks within an organisation putting all your skills and knowledge into practice.

At the end of the 52 weeks the organisation has a choice of transferring you to their organisation, extending or ceasing the engagement. The main objective of the Newtyne Academy is to transfer you to the host organisation.   There is no cost incurred by graduates.

They have three analyst vacancies right now within Tesco Bank and are targeting Physics and Astronomy graduates as, in their words…

“We have found these to be a rich vein of talented and highly suitable individuals”

Find out more on MyCareerHub

Featured employer: MThree Consulting & technology jobs in Scotland

MThree Consulting offer an interesting route into working in tech with supported training.  They say:

We understand that taking those first steps into your career can be daunting. With so many different opportunities and routes into employment in front of you, it’s hard to know how to navigate. Within our Alumni Programme we are currently looking for Graduates who enjoy problem solving and coming up with creative solutions to join our firm.

They use words like “flexibility”, “stepping stone to your future”.  If this sounds like something you want to know more about, find out here:

Alumni By MThree Job Advert

They are currently recruiting for jobs in Glasgow and Bournemouth and they are have an insight networking event in Glasgow on Thursday 14th June. More details here.

You can also read Tim’s blogpost to find out what it’s like for a physics graduate with MThree

 

Featured job: Materials Scientist, De La Rue

De La Rue provides governments and organisations with the secure products and digital solutions that enable countries to trade, companies to sell, economies to grow and people to move securely around an increasingly connected world. De La Rue partners with governments, central banks and commercial organisations across the world.

In the last three years, De La Rue has provided services to 142 countries, generating over 7 billion unique products and solutions annually – in the form of banknotes, passports and secure product identifiers.

They are currently recruiting for a New Product Development Scientist to work on security document development projects within our Technology Centre in Overton, Hampshire. The New Product Development Scientist will lead projects within the Development Team from idea creation through to product launch following the De La Rue innovation process. You will be involved in the development of scientific, technical and product expertise in key areas such as: coatings,  polymer, print and ink technologies.

They are looking for innovative individuals with the following skills;

  • Graduate or above in Chemistry, Physics, Material Science, Chemical Engineering or similar subject.
  • Industrial experience in bringing a technical and/ or complex products to market either through a focus on technical research or product development.
  • Experience of working within coatings, packaging, ink, print, paper or polymer development is advantageous
  • Knowledge of polycarbonate security documents and/ or laser engraving/ laser science is desirable.
  • Understanding of the processes involved in the delivery of projects or sub-projects with evidence of delivering to challenging timescales.
  • Ability to learn the science involved in one or more areas of scientific focus to support the De La Rue product ranges.
  • Possess good commercial understanding and able to connect with challenges outside of the Materials Development team.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, with the ability to work proactively and independently.

The role will involve travel in the UK and overseas at times

To find out more visit www.delarue.com

 

From physics to petrochemical industry

IneosOlivia Steele studied Physics at the University of Edinburgh, but her role is open to chemistry and chemical engineering graduates.

Degree Subject

Masters of Physics with Honours Astrophysics, U of Edinburgh, graduated July 2015.

Brief career history, including current job title & employer

I started working for INEOS as a commercial graduate in Cologne, September 2015. I was out there for almost two years and had two roles in that time: ethylene operator and polymers performance analyst. From May of last year, I have been Assistant Product Manager for INEOS Olefins & Polymers Europe, based in Grangemouth.

Where was your current job was advertised/how did you find it, what was the appeal, what attributes were the organisation looking for?

I met INEOS at the Edinburgh University Careers fair and so applied online. I was keen to start a new challenge and the commercial graduate scheme was a perfect fit. It appealed to me because INEOS wanted graduates who studied a STEM subject, even for the commercial roles. They appreciated the analytical/numerical skills and problem solving I had learned through university.

Which other organisations offer similar roles?

Most other petrochemical companies offer similar roles, however with INEOS you are given real responsibilities from day one. The company offer lots of support and give you space to expand your role with time.

Can you describe what your job entails or a typical week in your job? With your crystal ball, what does the future for your sector/job look like?

I am responsible for the day-to-day planning of all our chemical products we make on site. This means working with our customers and consumers, the shipping team, different assets and taking part in many cross-optimisation conversations. The future for my current role looks exciting – I am beginning to learn more about cracker economics, getting involved in market analysis and taking part in some long-term projects.

Best/Worst parts of the job

Best part of the job is that every day is different (not a cliché!) and I get to interact with various teams both on site here in Grangemouth and abroad. Worst part of the job is that I have to deal with unforeseen complications – but only sometimes!

How have you used the skills and knowledge from your degree in your job?

Creative problem solving helps when dealing with certain issues and analytical thinking is needed not only for day-to-day planning discussions but also to work out the most cost effective solution in a time-pressured environment.

What extra-curricular experience (eg work experience, volunteering, societies, sports, interests etc) do you believe helped you get where you are today?

I have had a range of different types of work experience – as a shop assistant, a waitress, a summer research student at the observatory and as a research assistant for a company who make sports equipment in Austria – these were all great opportunities to learn about different techniques, improve communication skills and develop customer relations. Being involved in societies and sports also helps with organisational skills and working with different types of people.
Is there anything you wish you HAD done in your past to make it easier to get where you are today?

Perhaps taken some more chemistry modules at university…it’s been a bit of a learning curve!

What advice would you give to students wishing to enter your field of work?

The petrochemical industry is fast paced – make sure you are ready for a challenge, it won’t disappoint!

CGG on campus & recruiting physicists

CGG

Are you passionate about science and technology and want to use your skills to solve real problems?

CGG provide geological, geophysical and reservoir expertise to natural resource clients around the globe. They are looking for people with excellent analytical and problem solving skills, who will apply these skills to solving these complex data issues.

CGG will be visiting the University of Edinburgh to share information with you about their graduate and internship programmes, their image processing technology & offer advice on how to prepare for their video interviews & assessment centres.

If you are currently studying Physics, Geophysics, Geology, Maths or Engineering, see them on Thursday 15th March from 1pm – 2pm.

Details here: https://mycareerhub.ed.ac.uk/students/events/detail/488927

Not sure where physics can take you?

2nd or 3rd year physicist? Not sure where physics can take you?

This informal and practical session will give you a head start in knowing where to look to get some ideas and raise your awareness of your options with physics.

When : Wednesday 25 January 2017          Where: JCMB 3217

Time: 2pm – 2.40pm

This session is for any 2nd and 3rd year Physics student including direct entry.You can just turn up but to guarantee a place, book via MyCareerHub events (search Physics)