Yuan Shen, PhD Physics

Yuan Shen won 'Best Outstanding Output for the Faculty of Science and Engineering 2019/20' at the Manchester Doctoral College Excellence Awards.

University of Manchester PhD studentYuan Shen

After just six months Yuan published his first paper in a very highly respected journal. He has now written three publications during his first year, and carried out influential experiments in his field.

“My research focuses on producing multidimensional solitary states and manipulation of their motion. These are big challenges in different areas of physics. In our work, we successfully generated dissipative solitons in nematics with negative and positive dielectric anisotropies and manipulated their motions by tuning electric fields and alignment conditions.

“I occasionally observed the solitons and was deeply attracted by their fascinating dynamic behaviours.”

“The most interesting part of being a postgraduate student is that once you come up with a brilliant idea you start designing experiments to verify it.”

Yuan Shen / PhD Physics

“Already in his first year of PhD studies, Yuan picked a very novel aspect of liquid crystal research, and investigated dissipative solitons by characterising their formation and properties", says Ingo Dierking, Senior Lecturer, Department of Physics and Astronomy. 

"He demonstrated a fundamentally different behaviour for achiral and chiral materials, a kind of wave-particle dualism not observed before, and showed how to use solitons as vehicles for micro-cargo transport.”

“Moving forward", says Yuan, "I plan to utilise the solitons as micro-vehicles to transport micro-cargos and manipulate their motions through electric fields and light.”