[robotics-worldwide] [jobs] PhD Modeling, Planning and Control for Manipulations of Deformable Objects (France, Spain)

MEZOUAR-Youcef youcef.mezouar at ifma.fr
Sun Nov 8 10:15:35 PST 2015

PhD Title: Modeling, Planning and Control for Manipulations of Deformable Objects: Application to Rubber Type Materials. 

The Institut Pascal, CNRS/UBP/IFMA laboratory at Clermont-Ferrand (France), opens a PhD position for highly motivated candidates interested in completing a PhD thesis on robotics. 

Positions will start as soon as possible and will be based on contracts of 3 years. The retained candidates will work in the research team MACCS ( http://maccs.univ-bpclermont.fr/ ) in Clermont-Ferrand France in collaboration with the Robotic, Perception, Real Time research group of Zaragoza Spain ( https://webdiis.unizar.es/~csagues/ ). 

The problem of manipulation and grasping has concentrated high research effort since long time ago. 

In addition when this is going to be carried out autonomously, the perception and interpretation of environment is needed. 

In this context vision is an incomparable sensor. When no rigid objects but deformable objects are to be manipulated, more challenges appear. 

So, the motion control should include the interactions with the deformable objects in the environment. 

The introduction of models to understand the physics of deformation can be used to predict the grasping positions. 

Simulations tools can be used in the preliminary steps just to evaluate the computation and accuracy requisites. 

There are many deformable objects in our current life, cloths, food, papers, toys and many others but also in industry as paper sheets, vegetables, meat etc. 

This particular work is around the manipulation of rubber sheets for production of tires. 

The high level commands have to be included in association to the dynamic planning and the perception of the environment. 

The topics of this research include: 

-Modelling of deformable objects and planning of grasping position. 

-C omputer vision to get information from the environment and his interpretation. The use of conventional cameras and RGB-D sensors is considered in this point 

-Dynamic grasping and control for the manipulation. This can be done using the models expressing the behavior of the deformable object. 

-Experiments to validate the proposal. 

All these techniques will be tested in the bi-arm platform available at the lab composed by two Kuka LWR arms, a Shadow hand and a Barrett hand equipped with tactile sensors and several types of cameras (such as Kinect). 


    * A Master degree in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronics or other related areas. 
    * Strong background in mathematics and programming, specially in C++. 
    * Excellent oral and written communication skills in English. 

Desired experience: 

    * Previous experience and knowledge in one or more of the following areas: computer vision, robotics, machine learning and control theory. 
    * Previous experience on programming ROS (Robot Operating System) software and using Linux operating system. 
    * Previous experience on programming with OpenCV and PCL libraries and using Kinect cameras. 

The candidates should send their candidatures via email at youcef.mezouar at ifma.fr, including: (1) their CVs, (2) motivation letter, (3) transcripts of previous university degrees (unofficial are enough now), (4) previous research publications (if existing) and (5) contact information of 2 or 3 people who could serve as references. 

Professeur des Universités 
Institut Français de Mécanique Avancée 
Responsable du pôle Machines, Mécanismes et Systèmes 
Responsable du Master Recherche Robotique UBP/IFMA 
Institut Pascal UMR 6602 CNRS/IFMA/UBP 
Responsable de l'équipe MACCS 

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