State-of-the-art machines to manipulate soft matter —materials that behave as soft solids or liquids, depending on the level of force applied to them, such as sunscreen gels, clay, mayonnaise, tomato sauce— are preprogrammed to execute the same motion endlessly. By itself, the machine has no intelligence, no perception that a soft material must be manipulated, nor can autonomously adapt its plans to change the shape of the material. The intelligence is currently placed in the mind of the developer(s) who built the system and told it how to move. The SMEAR project aims at bringing part of this intelligence and autonomy in manipulating soft matter into the machine, by integrating and improving the latest available perception technologies in the domain of computer vision and artificial intelligence (AI) with ``traditional'' state-of-the-art model-based engineering techniques, with the goal of designing a prototype robotic system for autonomous manipulation of soft matter.
The SMEAR project is part of the multi-disciplinary “Engineering Design research program” of the Department of Mechanical Engineering of Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). The project is a collaboration between the divisions of Dynamical Systems Design (DSD, focused on systems, dynamics and control), Thermo Fluids Engineering (TFE, focused on heat and flow), and Computational and Experimental Mechanics (CEM, focused on mechanics and materials). The design of a soft-material manipulating robot requires multi-disciplinarity, combining hardware design, modeling, computer vision, AI, programming, and robot control. The most prominent components of the SMEAR project are:
We are looking for a candidate who meets the following requirements:
We offer a challenging job for four years in a highly motivated team at a dynamic and ambitious University. You will be part of a highly profiled multidisciplinary collaboration where expertise of a variety of disciplines comes together. The TU/e is located in one of the smartest regions of the world and part of the European technology hotspot ‘Brainport Eindhoven’; well-known because of many high-tech industries and start-ups. A place to be for talented scientists!
The gross monthly salary in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement of the Dutch Universities (CAO NU), starts with € 2.395 (in the first year) to € 3.061 (in the fourth year). Besides this, the TU/e has holiday and end-of the-year allowances, an excellent package of attractive benefits for employees and a modern sports complex. Assistance for finding accommodation is provided. Especially for PhD candidates, the TU/e also offers opportunities for personal development. We do this by offering every PhD candidate a series of courses that are part of the PROOF program as an excellent addition to your scientific education.
More information about the project can be obtained through the project’s supervisory team: A. Saccon (a.saccon[at]tue.nl), N.O. Jaensson (n.o.jaensson[at]tue.nl), and C.V. Verhoosel (c.v.verhoosel[at]tue.nl). Personnel information can be obtained by contacting H. Boulgalag, HR Advisor(h.boulgalag[a]tue.nl). Further information about the employment conditions can be found here.
You can respond to this vacancy via our application page www.tue.nl/jobs by clicking on the button "Solliciteer op deze vacature / Apply for this job" including:
We do not respond to applications that are sent to us in a different way.
Both national and international applications to this advertisement are appreciated. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Promising candidates will be contacted by email.