Position filled - PhD studentship: Physical human-robot interaction and assistive robotics with medical application
The School of Engineering and Physical Sciences (EPS) at Heriot-Watt University is offering full fees and stipend for 3 years fully-funded PhD studentship to UK/EU applicants on physical human-robot interaction and assistive robotics with medical application. Heriot-Watt University is recognised as one of the leading UK research institutes in general engineering as per the Research Excellence Framework (REF) results of 2014 (ranked 1st). The student will be supervised by Dr Mustafa Suphi Erden of the Institute of Sensors, Signals, and Systems (ISSS) based at EPS at Heriot-Watt University.
This PhD project is an integral part of a wider research on developing robotic trainers and assistants for minimally invasive surgery (MIS) operations in the medical domain. The research includes capturing surgeon skills, developing physically interactive robotic trainers for haptic and manipulation skills, developing physically interactive robotic assistants for co-manipulation, identifying surgeon skill level through electromyography (EMG) registering from arm muscles and through near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) monitoring of cortical brain activity. The PhD student will work in close cooperation with other PhDs and post-doctoral researchers.
Specific to this position are,
1) Taking part in skill capturing for MIS through kinematics analysis,
2) Taking part in robotic measurement of surgeon hand-impedance and their analysis,
3) NIRS cortical brain monitoring for MIS skill level identification,
4) Developing robotic trainer for MIS with feedback from NIRS monitoring,
5) Developing robotic assistant for MIS with feedback from NIRS monitoring,
6) Taking part in integration of the robotic trainer and assistant with feedback from EMG registering.
The project requires knowledge and experience with robotic manipulators and machine learning techniques. Knowledge and experience with medical robotics and medical applications is desirable.
Physical Human-Robot Interaction and Assistive Robotics at ISSS
The physical human-robot interaction and assistive robotics research group aims to develop both robotic assistance and robotic training technologies for industrial and medical applications. Their research focuses on (1) understanding human behavior and human factors in manipulation tasks within the actual task environment, (2) design, control, and implementation of robotic assistants to help humans in these tasks by using knowledge of human behaviour and human factors, and (3) design, control, and implementation of robotic trainers to ameliorate and speed up training of novice subjects. One of the streams of their research is fine manipulation tasks requiring professional skills, such as manual welding in industry and minimally invasive surgery in medicine.
How to Apply
Applications should be made online .https://www.hw.ac.uk/schools/engineering-physical-sciences/research/phd/isss.htm
Applications will be accepted up to the point of recruiting a suitable candidate. Enquires about the research project should be made to Dr Mustafa Suphi Erden (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Besides the formal forms and papers for the online application, the following are required:
1) A motivation letter (at most two pages) stating your background in relation to the project and why you are interested in the position,
2) A transcript of bachelor and master program grades,
3) Any conference or journal publications and Master thesis or dissertation you have written.