Congratulations to Julia De Pineda, who passed her viva this month. Her thesis was entitled ‘Multi-layer metasurfaces for manipulating the propagation of microwaves along surfaces and edges’. Julia published four papers during her time with the CDT.
Below, Julia describes the challenges and rewards of undertaking a PhD and the experience of having a virtual viva:
My years as a PhD student have been an emotional rollercoaster. There have been some very tough times, when I’ve been very close to quitting but there have also been really fun times. And it is the difficult times that make you grow anyway so in the end, I am very happy I decided to stay and finish this project. I also feel very lucky to have been able to work with my supervisors who have always been there to point me in the right direction, even when I thought my research was not getting anywhere. I would also like to highlight the role of the CDT regarding the soft skills training that we received along the way. I feel that sometimes as student we don’t see the importance it has but now that I am starting to look for a job I realise how many transferable skills I have acquired during these four years.
From my time as a PhD student I take some really good friends with me and many great experiences, specially from all the conferences I’ve got to attend and the amazing places I was able to discover in the meantime. However, I am very pleased that this time is over and I am very much looking forward to an exciting new adventure, whatever that is. In any case, I am sure I will take with me everything I have learnt these years, both personally and professionally. I can definitely say that I am a better version of myself than I was four years ago and to me that’s the greatest achievement.
Finally, I would like to say that submitting my thesis in the middle of a global pandemic and therefore having a virtual viva was something I was not ready for and could never have imagined when I started my PhD. But it was alright in the end and an enriching experience after all. So I would like to tell anyone in a similar situation to relax and try to get the most out of the experience. I am sure in the future we will look at it in a different way and realise that it made us learn and grow.
Julia is considering retraining as an air-traffic controller. We wish her the best of luck in her future endeavours.
Below is a list of Julia’s publications and conferences she has presented at:
Julia has co-authored the following publications:
- March 2020– Pineda JD, Hibbins AP, Sambles JR, Coupled Edge Modes Supported by a Microwave Metasurface, Optics Letters, Opt. Lett. 45, 7, 1778-1781 (2020)
- August 2019– Pineda JD, Ward GP, Hibbins AP, Sambles JR, Metasurface Bilayer for Slow Microwave Surface Waves, Physical Review B, Phys. Rev. B. 100, 8, 081409 (2019)
- November 2018– Pineda JD, Hibbins AP, Sambles JR, Microwave Edge Modes on a Metasurface with Glide Symmetry, Physical Review B, Phys. Rev. B. 98, 20, 205426 (2018)
- November 2017– Pineda JD, Mitchell-Thomas RC, Hibbins AP, Sambles JR, A broadband metasurface Luneburg lens for microwave surface waves, Applied Physics Letters, Appl. Phys. Lett. 111, 211603 (2017)
Julia has presented at the following conferences:
- J.D de Pineda, A.P Hibbins, J.R Sambles; Presentation: “Metasurfaces for high index effective media”, 2019 IEEE Radio and Antenna Days of the Indian Ocean (RADIO), Reunion, Reunion, 23 – 26 Sept 2019
- J.D de Pineda, A.P Hibbins, J.R Sambles; Presentation: “Exploration of Microwave Edge modes in metasurfaces with Glide symmetry”, 13th International Congress on Advanced Electromagnetic Materials for novel wave phenomena (Metamaterials), Rome, Italy, 16 – 21 Sept 2019
- J.D de Pineda, G.P. Ward, A.P Hibbins, J.R Sambles; Presentation: “Exploration of Edge Modes formed in periodic hexagonal metasurfaces with glide symmetry”, 12th International Congress on Advanced Electromagnetic Materials for novel wave phenomena (Metamaterials), Espoo, Finland, 27 Aug – 1 Sept 2018
- J.D de Pineda, A.P Hibbins, R.C Mitchell-Thomas, J.R Sambles; Presentation: “Multilayer Hexagonal Metasurfaces for Antenna Applications”, APS/URSI 2017, San Diego, California, 10-14 July 2017
- J.D de Pineda, A.P Hibbins, R.C Mitchell-Thomas, J.R Sambles; Poster: “Multilayer Hexagonal Metasurfaces for Antenna Applications”, EUPROMETA school, Bordeaux, France, 4-7 April 2017