[robotics-worldwide] [jobs] PhD Position in Robotic Rehabilitation at Nanyang Technological University

Lorenzo MASIA lorenzo.masia at ntu.edu.sg
Sat Feb 15 00:29:52 PST 2014

Compliant Advanced Robotic Actuation Powering Assistive Composite Exoskeleton 
Assistant Professor Lorenzo MASIA 
N. of available positions: 1 
Intake: August 2014 

Exoskeletons represent nowadays the ultimate challenge in robotics,
especially for those applications where is required a level of additional
effort for assisting a subject lacking of voluntarily control due to
neurological damage or empowering human mobility or dexterity in working
environments. Despite several devices have been developed and commercialized
the diffusion of such kind of technology still remain driven by the
conventional electromechanical actuation with the intrinsic limitations of
power consumption, safety and power-weight ratio. The project aims to
provide innovative solutions and overcome the aforementioned limitations by
introducing a new concept of actuation technology based on a novel
generation of adaptive/multifunctional structures working in
elastically-nonlinear regimes and providing an unconventional approach that
merges modern mechatronic technology and theory of composite materials. The
ambition is to challenge current design principles, deliver new ones and
create novel paradigms for control robustness by addressing the development
and use of safe, energy-efficient and highly dynamic non-linear actuation
systems based on multistable composite structures. This will permit the
embodiment of natural characteristics found in biological systems, into the
structures of a new generation of mechatronic assistive/augmenting devices
with the possibility to finely modulate and to predict the mechanical
impedance of composite material structures. The unconventional design of a
novel actuated mechanism using the tunable compliance of the carbon fiber
reinforced laminates will allow to downsize the electromechanical
counterpart and consequently the power requirements.       
The present research theme aims to coordinate a multidisciplinary approach
to the develop and use of compliant robotic technology and multistable
composite structures for a new concept of actuation for assistive augmenting
technology: the candidate will be required to design and characterize the
actuators and develop assistive technology based on the proposed concept to
assist/empower human motor performance. The project will be broken down into
the following steps: conceptual design and simulation of new hardware;
mechanical design and assembly of the system; characterization and control
of the device and experimental trials on humans. 
The research student scholarship will be provided by Intelligent Systems
Center of Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) and ST Engineering
today one of Asia's largest defense and engineering groups (Round the world
more than 22,000 employees).  
REQUIREMENTS: We are preferably seeking candidates with a background in
Mechanical/Aerospace Engineering AND/OR Robotics. 
The ideal candidate will be familiar with control engineering, robotics,
mechanical measurements and instrumentation, biomechanics, structural
engineering and/or theoretical understanding and practical knowledge of
advanced composite materials. 
He/she will have generic mechanical engineering skills such as manual skills
for hardware assembly, strong experience in CAD mechanical design,
SolidWorks, Pro-E, Alibre, and with Matlab/Simulink. 

For further details concerning the research project, please contact:
lorenzo.masia at ntu.edu.sg or visit 

Lorenzo MASIA, Ph.D. | Assistant Professor |
Robotics Research Center
Division of Mechatronics and Design 
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 
Nanyang Technological University  
N3.2-02-46, 50 Nanyang Avenue, Singapore 639798  
Tel: (65) 6790-6239 GMT+8h | Email: lorenzo.masia at ntu.edu.sg  
Web: www.lorenzomasia.info 

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