Tunable properties of material is getting attraction for a wide range of application from robotic, tunable surface properties or drug release application. An upcoming topic relates to tunable dielectric properties of materials for 5G and in general for the connected world of tomorrow.
5G is indeed foreseen as an enabler of the internet of things, notably for applications like self-driving cars, cloud or interactive gaming, collaborative robots, sensors or remote surgery.
To enable the deployment of 5G, many small antennas will be placed in our environment. Because the number of antennas will be huge, it is important to minimize their energy consumption by a.o. maximizing their efficiency. This can be achieve using smart, responsive liquid crystal antenna. Upon applying an electrical stimulus, the properties of the material are modified and consequently the radio frequency (RF) signal can be directed in a given direction, preventing unwanted losses in the environment.
Smart responsive materials have the potential to provide new functionalities and push the limit of current or new applications since their mechanical or electrical properties are not frozen. In a similar way as liquid crystals (LC) are used for their adjustable optical properties in liquid crystal displays (LCD), upon application of an electric field, the dielectric properties of the LC can be tuned to adjust the interaction of the substrate with radio frequency waves. This project will focus on the assessment, development, synthesis and processing of stimulus-triggered materials based on liquid crystals for 5G applications. We envision that LCs have the potential to become a key element in 5G communications and may pave the way towards the deployment of 5G smart antennas.
This project will be carried out in close collaboration with a company, SABIC, and is part of “STORM-BOTS”, an international, integrated research and doctorate programme funded by the European Union in the framework of the Horizon 2020 Marie Sklodowska-Curie ITN Action.
The STORM-BOTS consortium consists of 8 high profile research institutions, universities and companies working towards harnessing the full potential of liquid-crystal-based responsive surfaces, soft actuators and smart machines.
We are looking for talented, motivated and enthusiastic PhD students who meet the following requirements:
Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more? Please contact
dr. Nadia Grossiord (N.Grossiord[at]tue.nl), dr. Danqing Liu (d.liu1[at]tue.nl) or dr. Anne Hélène Gelebart (AnneHelene.Gelebart[at]sabic-hpp.com).
For information about terms of employment, click here or contact ms. P.J. van de Weijer,
Please visit www.tue.nl/jobs to find out more about working at TU/e!
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