Ceri and Lia New


Left to right: Ceri Brenner, Lia Han Location: Optomechanics lab C15, UCL Photographer: Ben Gilbert Image © Ben Gilbert/ScienceGrrl  Please do not use this image on other sites without the permission of ScienceGrrl (sciencegrrlUK@gmail.com)

Ceri Brenner, PhD, works as a research scientist at the Central Laser Facility at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire, and is also a technical laser specialist for the Science and Technology Facilities Council Harwell Imaging Partnership.

Her PhD was in laser-plasma physics, which she describes as “a very application-driven area of research”, encompassing technologies as wide-ranging as energy generation, cancer treatments and medical imaging. Her work involves firing lasers at small targets made of metal and then looking at the radiation that flies off them. She ran her first half-marathon on the weekend that she submitted her PhD thesis.

Lia Han, MSci, is a PhD student in experimental quantum physics at UCL. She works on optomechanics, shining lasers onto tiny glass balls in order to reveal their quantum nature. She is a classically-trained violinist, and in her spare time she DJs as DJ Kitty Mao and runs The Quantum Workshop – a laser demonstration that involves levitating dust and ash using nothing but the power of light.