Applications Invited for Junior Research Fellowships at Physical Research Laboratory

  • Last date for online Application: 17 April 2023 (till 14:00 hrs. IST)
  • Interview dates at PRL, Ahmedabad: 11-12 May and 22-23 June 2023.


Applications for Junior Research Fellowships (JRFs) at Physical Research Laboratory (PRL) are invited from highly motivated and dynamic candidates to pursue research in the science domains of Astronomy & Astrophysics, Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, Geosciences and Theoretical Physics. JRFs at PRL will be encouraged to register for a Ph.D. degree at an Institute/University with which PRL has an MoU. PRL’s research fellows will adhere to the norms of the registering Institute/University as agreed upon in the MoU.

It is the sole responsibility of the candidate to ensure the fulfilment of the eligibility criteria as notified. The candidate should fully comply with the procedural requirements and time limits stipulated for submission of the online application. Any deviations from the above would result in the cancellation of candidature, and any representation, whatsoever on such matters, will not be entertained.

  • The candidates selected as JRFs will be joining PRL in July 2023.

Following are the details of the research topics in each research domain. Please visit the web pages of each discipline for more Information on research topics before filling in the online application.

Astronomy & Astrophysics

Solar system’s minor bodies like Comets and Asteroids in the optical wavelengths (both imaging-polarimetry and low-resolution spectroscopy), exoplanets around stars, multiwavelength (from radio wavelengths to optical wavelengths) research on stellar astrophysics including M dwarfs, symbiotic stars, morphological studies of star formation regions both high mass and low mass stars, optical and near-IR studies of transient events like novae, supernovae and GRBs, optical and near-IR studies of star clusters, extragalactic astronomy, studies of Radio galaxies using GMRT, and other globally available radio telescopes, Optical and near-IR instrumentation for PRL 2.5m telescope, Space-based X-ray astronomy instrumentation for future X-ray missions, Space-based X-ray observations of black holes, neutron stars and white dwarfs in binary systems, Active Galactic Nuclei (AGNs) and X-ray polarizations, Numerical simulation of the solar atmosphere and heliosphere.

Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

Experiment: Quantum entanglement, quantum communication, quantum cryptography, quantum imaging, quantum sensing, nonlinear optics, quantum materials, quantum emitters, plasmonics, cavity QED, integrated photonic quantum computing, structured beams, generation and detection of THz radiations, astrochemical studies, shock processing of materials, reactions induced in astrochemical ices by projectiles, radiations and shockwaves, ultrafast reactions studies, femtosecond and attosecond processes, fragmentation dynamics of molecules, Photons and auger electron studies, XUV generations, Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS), crystal defect dynamics studies, luminescence dosimetry, luminescence dating, Earth surface processes studies. Theory: Atomic many-body methods to study atomic clocks, parity and CP symmetry violations, isotope shifts, polarizabilities etc.; machine learning, parallel programming.


Nitrogen and Carbon Cycling in Marine And Terrestrial Environments, Isotopic Fingerprinting of Waters of India, Paleoclimate Studies using Marine and Terrestrial Proxies, Marine Geochemistry, Chemical Weathering and Climate, Paleo-monsoon and Desertification on various time scales, Spatial and Temporal evolution of various Landforms of India, Evolution of Proterozoic Sedimentary Basins of India, Subduction Zone Volcanism, Catastrophic/extreme events, Mass Extinctions, and Earth Surface Processes, Ambient Aerosol Chemistry over Land and Oceans.

Planetary Sciences and Space Exploration

Studies of surfaces, atmospheres, and ionospheres of planets; theoretical modelling and observational studies of physical processes of Mars, Venus, Moon, and asteroids; origin and evolution of the solar system objects through laboratory analysis of extraterrestrial material (meteorites and sample returned missions); analysis of data from Indian missions Chandrayaan-1, -2, -3, Mars Orbiter Mission and Aditya-L1; scientific instrumentation for future planetary missions to Moon, Venus, and Mars; and Studies of planetary geology through the data obtained from space missions.

Solar Physics

Physics of solar oscillations; structure and evolution of sunspots; magnetohydrodynamic processes in the solar atmosphere, coronal heating, solar eruptions; and space weather predictions, design and development of sophisticated instruments for solar observations and participation in upcoming national projects, like the Aditya-L1 space mission and National Large Solar Telescope (NLST).

Space and Atmospheric Sciences

Physics of the sun-earth interactions; space weather and its effect on society at large; atmospheric wave dynamics and coupling processes; aerosols and their impact on Earth’s radiation budget; studies of trace gases, volatile organic compounds and their effects on the atmosphere; cloud dynamics; and global warming/climate change. Opportunities also exist for participation in upcoming Indian space missions like Aditya-L1, dual-aeronomy satellite mission DISHA, and missions to Venus and Mars.

Theoretical Physics

Condensed matter Physics-including quantum condensed matter physics, topological materials, unconventional superconductivity, strongly correlated electronic system, itinerant magnetism; Particle Physics – including neutrino physics, collider physics, dark matter phenomenology, CP violation, baryogenesis, heavy flavor physics, effective field theories, strong interaction physics, precision calculations in strong and electro-weak interaction physics, studies of extended gauge, global and space-time symmetries; Cosmology and Astro-particle Physics; Artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques in fundamental physics.

Eligibility criteria for applying to the JRF Programme

  • Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Science or Engineering with at least a first-class (60%) or equivalent grades at both Bachelor’s and Master’s levels.
  • Candidates expecting their Master’s degree by August 2023 are also eligible to apply, subject to having secured at least a first-class (60%) or equivalent grade(s) up to the last semester.
  • Candidates from disciplines of any branch of Physics, Engineering Physics, Photonics, Space Physics, Atmospheric Science, Environmental Science, Meteorology, Geology, Geophysics, and Remote Sensing are eligible to apply.
  • Candidates should be interested in pursuing a research career in the current research areas at PRL, as mentioned above.
  • Preference will be given to candidates who have completed their Master’s degree in the last two years. The intake will depend on the candidate’s performance in the interview and the suitability of the candidate’s research interest to the research program of PRL.
  • Applicants should have qualified for any one of the following examinations:
    1. CSIR-UGC-NET JRF/AP [June 2022] in Physical Sciences / Chemical Sciences / Earth, Atmospheric, Ocean, and Planetary Sciences.
    2. GATE [2021/2022/2023] in Physics / Geology and Geophysics / Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences / Chemistry
    3. JEST 2023 in Physics.
    4. UGC-NET JRF/AP [December 2021 and June 2022 (merged cycles)/December 2022] in Environmental Sciences (applicable for candidates applying in Geosciences, Planetary Sciences & space exploration. Physics at the UG and PG levels is mandatory for candidates applying in Planetary Sciences & space exploration) with a valid score/All India Rank.
  • Applicants whose All India ranks are in the range of 1-500 in any of the CSIR-UGC-NET/UGC-NET/GATE/JEST tests are likely, but not assured, to be called for an interview at PRL subject to their fulfilling other eligibility criteria mentioned above and online application through PRL’s website.
  • Prospective candidates are expected to have good proficiency in fundamental physics and mathematics.
  • PRL encourages gender diversity.
  • All candidates meeting the above minimum requirement are encouraged to apply.

Online Application

Important Information (please read this before filling in the application online):

  1. Candidates interested in applying to the PRL’s JRF program must complete the submission of the online application form.
  2. A valid e-mail ID and Mobile Number are mandatory for registration. E-mail ID should be kept active until the end of the admission process. The status of successful registration will be sent to the registered e-mail ID.
  3. Candidates are requested to fill in the online Application Form with the utmost care, as no modification(s) will be allowed after its submission. Request for any change(s)/correction(s) in the Application Form shall not be entertained under any circumstances after submitting the application form.
  4. PRL will not be responsible for any consequences arising from incorrect/incomplete Information furnished and/or failing to provide the required Information on time. Successful submission of the application form online does not guarantee a call for an interview.
  5. The candidate’s interview will be based on the academic qualification(s) and basic knowledge in physics, mathematics, & chemistry and not on research interest opted to pursue research in PRL.
  6. Candidates are advised to apply well before the closing date and not wait until the last date to avoid possible hindrances, such as internet connection issues, local server(s), and power failures.

Course Work

All the JRFs have to undergo two semesters of coursework after joining PRL. Only on the successful completion of the coursework will the JRFs be allowed to join a research group to start their work towards a Ph.D. degree.


For Junior Research Fellows (JRF): Rs. 31,000/- pm and for Senior Research Fellows (SRF): Rs. 35,000/- pm (as governed by Dept. of Space guidelines). On the completion of two years, the JRFs will be reviewed, and based on the recommendations of the review committee and the approval of the Director, PRL, the JRF may be awarded the position of SRF with an enhanced fellowship as per rules. The performance of the Research Fellows shall be reviewed on a yearly basis for the continuation of the fellowship.

Allotment of Supervisor:

The final decision on the research topic and supervisor will be made based on the following:

  1. JRF’s performance in the course work and,
  2. Requirement of ongoing research projects at PRL.

Accordingly, Information on available research topics and supervisors, as decided by the competent authority of PRL, will be shared with JRFs, at an appropriate time.

For Details: Visit Here

Contributed by: E Ramesh


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