PHD in Bioengineering - Advanced Physical Human-Robot Interfaces for Exoskeletons - [ PhD ]

Workplace: IIT
Added on: 15/02/2017 - Expires on: 06/03/2017

The research line “Advanced Robotics” (ADVR), led by Pr Darwin Caldwell, is active at the IIT Central Research Laboratories in Morego (Genova), the main premises of Fondazione Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT). ADVR research concentrates on an innovative, multidisciplinary approach to humanoid design and control, and the development of novel robotic components and technologies. This encompasses activities from both the hard (mechanical/ electrical design and fabrication, sensor systems, actuation development etc.) and soft (control, computer software, human factors etc) systems areas of robotics..

Following an agreement with the “Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria (DEIB)” of the “Politecnico di Milano” ADVR is offering 1 PhD  position at Politecnico di Milano Phd  school of Bioengineering on the specific project “Advanced Physical Human-Robot Interfaces for Exoskeletons”. The PhD call is online and available at the Politecnico website for the additional calls of the 32nd  cycle.

Theme description

The physical interaction between the human body and a wearable robot is a critical aspect. The way the assistive forces are distributed on the human surface determine the effectiveness and comfort of an exoskeleton. However, the design of the physical interfaces is a challenging task, since the surface of the human body is not uniform and can vary in time. Furthermore, it is important to consider other aspects related with the comfort such as temperature, humidity, breathability, biological compatibility, and so on.

The research would focus on the characterization of the human body surface and modelling of the interaction between a wearable robot and the human body, as well as the development and testing of advanced physical human-robot interfaces for an industrial exoskeleton.

Prerequisites

Ideal candidates should be extremely motivated, hold a Master’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering or related subjects, have an outstanding academic record, besides excellent communication skills in English, as well as ability to interact effectively with members of the research team.

Application

In order to apply for these positions it is mandatory to refer to the procedures required by the Politecnico di Milano. The official notice and the procedure for admissions is available at this link.

Interested applicants must follow the admission instructions and, additionally, can submit their CV electronically, outlining experience, qualifications, list of publications, a statement of research interests & plans and the names of at least two referees to Jesus Ortiz (jesus.ortiz@iit.it), submitting their CV and two possible contacts for a recommendation letter.

Until March 6th, 14:00 Italian time, candidates can apply online to the Politecnico di Milano PhD. (Application link)

Contacts
Jesus Ortiz
jesus.ortiz@iit.it
Involved Research lines
Advanced Robotics

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I numeri di IIT

L’Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) è una fondazione di diritto privato - cfr. determinazione Corte dei Conti 23/2015 “IIT è una fondazione da inquadrare fra gli organismi di diritto pubblico con la scelta di un modello di organizzazione di diritto privato per rispondere all’esigenza di assicurare procedure più snelle nella selezione non solo nell’ambito nazionale dei collaboratori, scienziati e ricercatori ”.

IIT è sotto la vigilanza del Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca e del Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze ed è stato istituito con la Legge 326/2003. La Fondazione ha l'obiettivo di promuovere l'eccellenza nella ricerca di base e in quella applicata e di favorire lo sviluppo del sistema economico nazionale. La costruzione dei laboratori iniziata nel 2006 si è conclusa nel 2009.

Lo staff complessivo di IIT conta circa 1440 persone. L’area scientifica è rappresentata da circa l’85% del personale. Il 45% dei ricercatori proviene dall’estero: di questi, il 29% è costituito da stranieri provenienti da oltre 50 Paesi e il 16% da italiani rientrati. Oggi il personale scientifico è composto da circa 60 principal investigators, circa 110 ricercatori e tecnologi di staff, circa 350 post doc, circa 500 studenti di dottorato e borsisti, circa 130 tecnici. Oltre 330 posti su 1400 creati su fondi esterni. Età media 34 anni. 41% donne / 59 % uomini.

Nel 2015 IIT ha ricevuto finanziamenti pubblici per circa 96 milioni di euro (80% del budget), conseguendo fondi esterni per 22 milioni di euro (20% budget) provenienti da 18 progetti europei17 finanziamenti da istituzioni nazionali e internazionali, circa 60 progetti industriali

La produzione di IIT ad oggi vanta circa 6990 pubblicazioni, oltre 130 finanziamenti Europei e 11 ERC, più di 350 domande di brevetto attive, oltre 12 start up costituite e altrettante in fase di lancio. Dal 2009 l’attività scientifica è stata ulteriormente rafforzata con la creazione di dieci centri di ricerca nel territorio nazionale (a Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) e internazionale (MIT ed Harvard negli USA) che, unitamente al Laboratorio Centrale di Genova, sviluppano i programmi di ricerca del piano scientifico 2015-2017.

IIT: the numbers

Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) is a public research institute that adopts the organizational model of a private law foundation. IIT is overseen by Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca and Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze (the Italian Ministries of Education, Economy and Finance).  The Institute was set up according to Italian law 326/2003 with the objective of promoting excellence in basic and applied research andfostering Italy’s economic development. Construction of the Laboratories started in 2006 and finished in 2009.

IIT has an overall staff of about 1,440 people. The scientific staff covers about 85% of the total. Out of 45% of researchers coming from abroad 29% are foreigners coming from more than 50 countries and 16% are returned Italians. The scientific staff currently consists of approximately 60 Principal Investigators110 researchers and technologists350 post-docs and 500 PhD students and grant holders and 130 technicians. External funding has allowed the creation of more than 330 positions . The average age is 34 and the gender balance proportion  is 41% female against 59% male.

In 2015 IIT received 96 million euros in public funding (accounting for 80% of its budget) and obtained 22 million euros in external funding (accounting for 20% of its budget). External funding comes from 18 European Projects, other 17 national and international competitive projects and approximately 60 industrial projects.

So far IIT accounts for: about 6990 publications, more than 130 European grants and 11 ERC grants, more than 350 patents or patent applications12 up start-ups and as many  which are about to be launched. The Institute’s scientific activity has been further strengthened since 2009 with the establishment of 11 research nodes throughout Italy (Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) and abroad (MIT and Harvard University, USA), which, along with the Genoa-based Central Lab, implement the research programs included in the 2015-2017 Strategic Plan.