[robotics-worldwide] [jobs] PhD Openings in Advanced Robotic Manipulators

Ferdinando Cannella Ferdinando.Cannella at iit.it
Wed Apr 29 09:54:59 PDT 2015


PhD Openings in Advanced Robotic Manipulators

Advanced Industrial Automation Lab (AIAL)
Department of Advanced Robotics (ADVR)
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT)

The IIT is an English language Research Institute founded on 2003 on the model of international technological centres, placed in Genoa. Its aim is to promote excellence in both basic and applied research and to facilitate the economic development at national level. The Institute has a staff of about 1400 people with about 85% of personnel dedicated to research. 44% of the researchers come from abroad, 28% are scientists from more than 50 countries and 16% are Italian researchers who have come back to Italy after a professional experience abroad. The average age of the IIT staff is less than 34 years, with a gender distribution of 41% women and 59% men. IIT has produced about 5000 publications and more than 150 inventions resulting in 300 patent applications. Its research activity led to the creation of 10 start-ups, with additional 13 start-ups currently being launched (http://www.iit.it/images/stories/scientific_plan/IIT-8-year-eng-final.pdf).

The AIAL-Advanced Industrial Automation Lab (http://www.iit.it/it/advr-labs/advanced-industrial-automation.html) has a number of fully funded PhD openings (starting in November 2015). Young scientists with excellent First/Master degrees (in Computer Science, Mechanical/Electrical Engineering or other related fields) and strong competencies and interest in one or more of the followings areas (physical system modelling/rigid body dynamics, reconfigurable mechanism, robot control, mechanism design, mechanical/mechatronic engineer or robotics, MATLAB and C/C++ programming) are invited to apply for admission.
The successful candidates will be involved in basic/applied Research Projects based on the Virtual Prototyping Design Method (http://www.iit.it/it/virtual-prototyping-design.html) that permits to build very detailed numerical models of the robots and then to improve strongly their performances and design. They will closely interact with all the other Advanced Robotics Labs and Groups as well as the R&D of Large Enterprises (http://www.iit.it/it/aia-projects.html) and abroad Research Centres thanks to the projects and collaborations (http://www.iit.it/it/aia-research.html).
The PhD call details of the two themes are in the following:

1) Development of Reconfigurable and Module Robotic Software for Novel Robotic Manipulator
Tutor: Dr. Ferdinando Cannella, Prof. Darwin Caldwell
Description: Nowadays the manufacturing is facing an urgent demand on automation upgrade to meet the requirements from various types of manufacturing industry. However, the current robotic man
manufacturing system is still not flexible and adaptive to high mix low volume manufacturing. One of the challenges is to study and solve how to quickly deploy the robotic software and hardware suitable and adaptive to robotic manufacturing changes, which may include multiple robots, sensors (vision, force) and related machines. As a consequence, it is very important to design novel module and reconfigurable software framework to manage multiple types of robots and robotic systems. Goal of this PhD is to study, design and build novel industry-level software based on ROS or ROS-Industry which is modular, reconfigurable, adaptive, easy to use to integrate and control various robotic systems. It means the system should be able to detect, communicate and control almost every current existed robotic systems or communication styles. Meanwhile also build a reconfigurable robotic manipulator so as to test the developed software. The manipulator design will be based on the experience obtained from previous projects, but also is inspired from the nature of human beings hands or other similar bio-mechanisms. Since it is very complicated to design a bio-inspired robotic mechanism, the virtual prototyping development (co-simulation that involves multi-body and finite element and control) is required as a basic skill.
Moreover the research is carried out within the ADVR that 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 and soft systems areas of robotics. Thus the industrial developments exploit these advances that permit to design the humanoid-like robots suitable for the industrial plants.
This work will be under supervision of Dr. Fei Chen, Dr. Carlo Canali
Requirements: this position is open to a PhD candidate with strong interesting in reconfigurable mechanism and skill in computer science. The background must be in robotics. The ideal competencies should be in computer science with strong programing skill, especially program using C++ under Linux. Required technical skills: 80% computer science, 20% Mechanism
Reference: Fei Chen, Ferdinando Cannella, Carlo Canali, Traveler Hauptman, Giuseppe Sofia, Darwin G. Caldwell, ''In-Hand Precise Twisting and Positioning by a Novel Dexterous Robotic Gripper for Industrial High-Speed Assembly'', IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2014), Hong Kong, China, May 2014.
Carlo Canali Cannella, Ferdinando; Fei Chen , Sofia, Giuseppe; Eytan, Amit; Caldwell, G. Darwin, "An automatic assembly parts detection and grasping system for industrial manufacturing," Automation Science and Engineering (CASE), 2014 IEEE International Conference on , vol., no., pp.215,220, 18-22 Aug. 2014. doi: 10.1109/CoASE.2014.6899329
Fei Chen, Ferdinando Cannella, Horonobu Sasaki, Carlo Canali, Toshio Fukuda, ``Error Recovery Strategies for Electronic Connectors Mating in Robotic Fault-tolerant Assembly System'', IEEE/ASME 10th International Conference on Mechatronic and Embedded Systems and Applications (MESA 2014), Senigallia, Italy, pp. 1-6, September 2014.
Chen, Fei; Sekiyama, K.; Cannella, Ferdinando; Fukuda, Toshio, "Optimal Subtask Allocation for Human and Robot Collaboration Within Hybrid Assembly System," Automation Science and Engineering, IEEE Transactions on , vol.PP, no.99, pp.1,11, 0, doi: 10.1109/TASE.2013.2274099

2) Design and Development of Non-Rigid Lightweight Dexterous Robot Manipulator
Tutor: Dr. Ferdinando Cannella, Prof. Darwin Caldwell
Description: Currently the compliance of the robots is given by the flexible joint and the precision is guaranteed by the rigid link. The results is an heavy robot with high accuracy but low speed performances. The using of elastic link to reduce the weight and to extend the flexibility from the joints to whole robot is a non-new idea, but it is still an open challenge for many issues: the precise position control is affected by the deflection, long lasting oscillations prolong the settling time, and so on. Solving these problems means to improve the potentiality of the robots: e.g. reducing the weight and then the power for moving them (that means more autonomy and higher performances), the elastic deformation can be stored and realised to harvest energy, these results can be applied to similar design (fire-rescue turntable ladders as well as cherry pickers, etc.).
So the goal of this PhD is to design and build novel robot with elastic link, to go further the current state of art (e.g. TUDOR project) improving the design part which takes in account the structure behaviour. Then this behaviour will be implemented in the force control to exploit the link elasticity for the compliance interaction between robot and environment, i.e. impulsive interaction with environment.
Moreover the research is carried out within the ADVR that 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 and soft systems areas of robotics that are suitable also for industrial applications.
This work will be under supervision of Dr. Carlo Canali, Dr. Fei Chen
Requirements: this position is open to a PhD candidate with strong interesting in reconfigurable mechanism and skill in mechanics. The background must be in mechanical/mechatronic engineer or robotics. The ideal competencies should be in multibody simulation/finite element analysis and robot dynamics and control. Required technical skills: 70% mechanics, 30% control
Reference:
Fei Chen, Ferdinando Cannella, Carlo Canali, Traveler Hauptman, Giuseppe Sofia, Darwin G. Caldwell, ''In-Hand Precise Twisting and Positioning by a Novel Dexterous Robotic Gripper for Industrial High-Speed Assembly'', IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2014), Hong Kong, China, May 2014.
Carlo Canali, Ferdinando Cannella, Fei Chen, Traveler Hauptman, Giuseppe Sofia, Amit A. Eytan, Darwin G. Caldwell "High Reconfigurable Self-Adaptive Robotic Gripper for Flexible Assembly" in Proceedings of the ASME 2014 International Design and Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, IDETC/CIE 2014, August 17-20, 2014, Buffalo, NY
Mariapaola D'Imperio ,Ferdinando Cannella, Fei Chen, Daniele Catelani, Claudio Semini and Darwin G. Caldwell "Modelling Legged Robot Multi-Body Dynamics Using Hierarchical Virtual Prototype Design" -Proceedings of Living Machines'14 Proceedings of the Second international conference on Biomimetic and Biohybrid Systems.
Ferdinando Cannella, Alberto Garinei, Mariapaola D'Imperio and Gianluca Rossi, "A Novel Method For The Design Of Prostheses Based On Thermoelastic Stress Analysis And Finite Element Analysis" Journal Of Mechanics In Medicine And Biology Vol. 14, No. 5 (2014) 1450064, World Scientific Publishing Company, Doi: 10.1142/S021951941450064.


Application Enquiries:
For any enquiries concerning the above research themes, please contact ferdinando.cannella at iit.it<mailto:ferdinando.cannella at iit.it>, carlo.canali at iit.it<mailto:carlo.canali at iit.it>, fei.chen at iit.it<mailto:fei.chen at iit.it>.
More information can be also  found in http://www.iit.it/images/phd-xxxi/RES.THEMES.ADVANDHUM.pdf.

Application Requirements:
The applicants should fill the online application at: (http://www.studenti.unige.it/postlaurea/dottorati/XXXI/IT) and upload the necessary application documents following the application procedures which can be found at: (http://phd.dibris.unige.it/biorob/index.php/how-to-apply) strictly no later than the 10th of June 2015, NOON, Italy time (Local time: GMT+2). International applications are encouraged and will receive logistic support with visa issues, etc. In addition, to apply, please send a detailed CV, a statement of motivation, at least 2 reference letters, degree certificates, grade of transcripts and any additional support material to Ferdinando Cannella (ferdinando.cannella at iit.it<mailto:ferdinando.cannella at iit.it>) with email Subject: "AIAL PhD Position Application"


Ferdinando Cannella, PhD
Head of Advanced Industrial Automation Lab

Team Leader
Advanced Robotics Department
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
[Italian Institute of Technology]
Via Morego, 30
16163 Genova (Italy)
t: + 39 010 71 781 562
m: +39 338 96 76 884
f: + 39 010 71 781 232
http://www.iit.it/it/advr-labs/advanced-industrial-automation.html

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