Optoelectronic Restive Random-Access Memory technologies

The Centre for Electronics Frontiers (CEF) led by Regius Chair of Engineering Prof Prodromakis, brings together diverse and interdisciplinary expertise for transforming modern society through technology. Our ambition is to push the frontiers of electronics through emerging technologies, disrupting current ways of thinking by innovating advanced nano/biosensors, safe and efficient energy storage solutions and novel hardware for AI. We are offering prospective PhD students the opportunity to join our team, interested in devoting their passion for addressing some of the challenges we have identified.

The adoption of sensory networks has been steadily increasing across various technology domains including healthcare, environmental monitoring, industrial automation, smart homes, agriculture, transportation, security, and defence. The number of these sensory nodes is projected to grow exponentially, reaching 75 billion by 2025 and escalating to 125 billion by 2030. This substantial increase will result in a vast amount of raw data that needs to be processed. This Von Neumann-like bottleneck adds more power and performance penalties to the already struggling conventional technologies in the era of AI. To mitigate this, it is crucial to adopt different unconventional technologies that span emerging electronic/photonic technologies and in-memory computing to push computational capabilities closer to the edge. Ongoing research at CEF focuses at defining a novel approach to embed intelligence locally enabling training at the edge by developing novel in-sensing processing elements (enabling electronic and photonic control). We are developing an in-sensor processing architecture using emerging devices (RRAMs) for image classification; however, it can be used in various domains such as light, RF, IR, and gas.

This PhD will be supervised by Prof Themis Prodromakis and Dr Andreas Tsiamis and aims to explore architecture routes and novel thin film materials for realising and characterising micro and nanoscale memristive devices that can be controlled electrically and optically. Device architectures include metal-insulator-metal vertically stacked structures, planar nanodevices, or hybrid architectures that extend from traditional designs. Material investigation may focus on transparent or semitransparent conducting electrodes and active single or bilayer dielectric configurations such as metal-oxides, 2D materials, organic materials etc. The PhD candidate will be trained in and consequently further develop fabrication techniques, including thin film deposition, device patterning and etching. The research will also contribute towards the development of the test apparatus and experimental procedures to allow device characterisation with optoelectronic control. Ultimately the devices may be integrated with CMOS electronics. The research is affiliated with the EPSRC programme “Pro-Sensing” that is developing next-generation semiconductor technologies for smart-imaging applications.

The successful candidate will join our team which includes researchers at the Centre for Electronics Frontiers, the Institute for Integrated Micro and Nano Systems and the wider College of Science and Engineering. They will also have the opportunity to work with our collaborators at the Institute of Photonics, University of Strathclyde. They will be based within the Institute for Integrated Micro and Nano Systems and will be trained to access our class 10 Micro and Nanofabrication cleanrooms at the Scottish Microelectronics Centre, complemented by our state-of-the-art semiconductor characterisation facilities.

Further Information: 

Group website: https://cef.eng.ed.ac.uk/

The University of Edinburgh is committed to equality of opportunity for all its staff and students, and promotes a culture of inclusivity. Please see details here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/equality-diversity

Closing Date: 

Tuesday, May 20, 2025

Principal Supervisor: 


Minimum entry qualification - an Honours degree at 2:1 or above (or International equivalent) in a relevant science or engineering discipline, possibly supported by an MSc Degree. Further information on English language requirements for EU/Overseas applicants.


Tuition fees + stipend are available for applicants who qualify as Home applicants.

To qualify as a Home student, you must fulfil one of the following criteria:

• You are a UK student

• You are an EU student with settled/pre-settled status who also has 3 years residency in the UK/EEA/Gibraltar/Switzerland immediately before the start of your Programme. (International students not eligible.)

Further information and other funding options.

Informal Enquiries: