Closing date for applications:
- 11 July 2023 (MSc/PhD)
- 31 October 2023 (Hons)
RATT invites high-flying students looking to get involved in radio astronomy, MeerKAT and the Square Kilometre Array to apply for postgraduate bursaries for 2024.
Rhodes University has established the Centre for Radio Astronomy Techniques and Technologies (https://ratt.center/), based around the SKA Research Chair in RATT, with the aim of furthering research into data processing algorithms, novel calibration & imaging techniques, and innovative observational methods. We have extensive collaborations with leading international radio astronomy groups, we are closely involved with the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) and the MeerKAT, C-BASS, HERA and (future) HIRAX telescopes in the Karoo, and we expect to play a significant role in the development of the Square Kilometre Array. Our activities range from observational radio astronomy programs with MeerKAT and other telescopes to algorithm design, software implementation, development of mathematical methods and frameworks for radio astronomy, and processing of observational data from existing radio telescopes. We have research projects of various scopes and levels available to suit students with a variety of aptitudes, from low-level software and algorithm work to high-level mathematics and physics. Applicants should have a strong academic record in one or preferably more of the following subjects: astronomy, computing science, mathematics and/or applied mathematics, physics, statistics, and signal processing.
Please see https://ratt.center/research/research-topics/ for more information on potential research areas and projects. Note that we are also offering a number of projects via the SARAO bursary call:
The 2024 funding levels will be linked to the relevant NRF and SARAO policies. PhD and MSc bursaries are renewable on an annual basis, subject to satisfactory academic progress. Please note that bursaries can only be awarded to candidates registering at Rhodes University for postgraduate or Honours research with a RATT-affiliated supervisor.
Priority for funding will be given to South African citizens and permanent residents, followed by candidates from the SKA Africa partner countries (Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, and Zambia). Candidates from the rest of the world will be considered on an exceptional basis only.
Please take note of the application process for 2024:
Before starting the application process, MSc or PhD applicants must contact a RATT-affiliated supervisor, agree on a research project (refer to the list of research projects above), and receive the supervisor’s pre-approval.
When contacting a supervisor, please be prepared to provide the following:
- A motivational letter
- A detailed Curriculum Vitae and copies of all academic transcripts
- The details of two or three referees
- For Hons applicants:
- Include the applicant’s background and
- The intended subject of study.
- For MSc and PhD applicants:
- Include the applicant’s background and
- Details of the research project.
- Please e-mail a copy of these to the supervisor, as well as firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once your supervisor pre-approves of your candidacy and your research project, you may apply via the NRF portal at https://www.nrf.ac.za/bursaries/calls. Your supervisor will provide important information for the application, such as application type and grant UID and whether to apply for a SARAO bursary or a regular NRF bursary.
Applications not pre-approved by a supervisor will not be accepted.
Note that pre-approval by the supervisor does not in any way guarantee a bursary. Final decisions will be made following NRF and SARAO policies.
In the event of more than one candidate intending to apply for the same research project, only one applicant will be pre-approved at the supervisor’s discretion (however, in this case, the supervisor may also suggest other projects for you.)
Above all, please be patient with us. The NRF application system has been changing over 2022/23, and everybody is still adjusting to the new procedures.
More information on RATT is available at https://ratt.center/. Please also see the following links from the NRF: