PhD for light based detection and ranging (LiDAR) (V36.3286)

PhD for light based detection and ranging (LiDAR)

Faculteit Electrical Engineering


PhD student Photonic Integration Technology for light based detection and ranging (LiDAR).

Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) has the following PhD student vacancy for research on compact photonic chips for application in LIDARs, in the research group Photonic Integration (PhI) of the department of Electrical Engineering.

Light based sensing and ranging is expected to enable a range of safety and metrology systems with the most topical examples emerging in automated driver assistance in cars. The first fully self-driving cars are expected to become available within five years from now. For safe operation these cars have a platform with several sensors to map the environment. LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) is a crucial sensor in such a platform: it is a kind of radar working with light instead of radio waves.

Today’s LIDAR systems are either bulky and expensive, or have a limited performance. TU Eindhoven is working, in close cooperation with a number of industrial partners, on an integration technology with which a full high-performance LIDAR system with 2D-scanning can be integrated in a single Photonic Integration Circuit with a chip area < 50 mm2. The chip will contain an advanced laser and a beam-steering array with large numbers of optical amplifiers and phase modulators. Our research is directed towards pushing the integration density to the limits. With this technology high-performance LIDARs will become so cheap that they can be applied for many applications: in self-driving cars, but also in drones, where low volume and weight is essential.

The research of the PhD student will be focused on investigating the limits of photonic integration and developing a LIDAR chip with record small dimensions.  The task will include fabrication of a LIDAR chip in a thin Indium Phosphide semiconductor membrane on a silicon substrate and integration of the photonic circuit with electronic control and driver circuitry, in order to enable high-volume low-cost manufacturing. The research comprises a broad range of aspects, including device physics, circuit design and process technology. You will have access to one of the world most advanced cleanroom laboratories for photonic integration technology.

The team

The Institute for Photonic Integration (IPI) has five dynamic and ambitious research groups, which are closely cooperating: a systems group, a photonic integration technology group and three materials research groups. You will work in the Photonic Integration group (PhI) which has about 35 members, 20 of which are PhD students. The IPI (previously COBRA) is internationally leading on advanced InP-based Photonic Integrated Circuits technology. See

Your role and responsibilities

Your research will focus on exploring the feasibility of a photonic integration process in which the photonic IC is fabricated on large silicon wafers. Challenges that you will address are pushing the integration density and the component efficiency to their fundamental limits, integrating the PICs with electronic driver and control circuitry, reducing the heat generation and developing efficient cooling of the chip. The technology that you will develop will, if it works as expected, prove disruptive in the field of Photonic Integration. IPI students present their work in high-impact journals and international conferences.


Applicants should have a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering or Applied Physics. Prior experience in Photonic IC design and semiconductor technology could be an advantage. An affinity for semiconductor technology and lab-based research is important. Candidates should be able to work independently as well as in a team and be highly skilled in written and spoken English. Communicative skills are very important because the complex technology infrastructure requires a close cooperation with many researchers and technologists.


We offer you:

  • An exciting job in a dynamic work environment
  • The possibility to present your work at international conferences.
  • A full time appointment for four years at Eindhoven University of Technology (
  • The salary is in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement of the Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2,222 per month initially, to € 2,840 in the fourth year.
  • An attractive package of fringe benefits, including end-of-year bonus (8,3% in December), an extra holiday allowance (8% in May), moving expenses and excellent sports facilities.

Informatie en sollicitatie


Questions regarding the academic content of the position can be directed to prof. Meint Smit ( ).
Other information can be obtained from the HR department, Tanja van Waterschoot (
More information on employment conditions can be found here:

For your application, please upload:

  • a brief letter motivating your interest and suitability for the position,
  • a detailed curriculum vitae including research experience,
  • transcripts of academic records indicating courses taken (including grades),
  • half-page summary of your MSc thesis,
  • contact details of two relevant references (email, phone number).

Please keep in mind; you can upload only 5 documents up to 2 MB each