[robotics-worldwide] [jobs] 3 post-docs in perception/manipulation/sensing | Rice + NASA

Marcia O'Malley omalleym at rice.edu
Fri Jul 20 12:35:43 PDT 2018

3 Post-doc Positions in Perception, Manipulation, and Tactile Sensing for
Bipedal Humanoid Robotics

Mechatronics and Haptic Interfaces Lab; Rice University; Houston, TX USA
  jointly with
NASA Johnson Space Center's Robotic Systems Technology Branch; Houston TX


Rice University's Mechatronics and Haptic Interfaces Lab, directed by
Professor Marcia O'Malley, is seeking candidates to fulfill three
post-doctoral research and development positions in the areas of robotic
perception, manipulation and tactile sensing development. Individuals
recruited to fill these positions will be collaborating closely with NASA
Johnson Space Center, and will be focused on bipedal humanoid application

Perception: A successful candidate will have a background in perception
development for robotic systems, with a focus on fusion of LIDAR and image
data to detect both objects and obstacles in a robot's environment. The
candidate will be developing perception algorithms and pipelines for the
Valkyrie bipedal humanoid, which uses a Carnegie Robotics MultiSense SL head
for its primary vision based sensing. The ideal candidate will have
experience developing robotic software using ROS on Linux Ubuntu operating
systems, Python and C++ programming experience, and experience using the Git
version control system. It is highly desired that the candidate has
experience in porting perception algorithms to physical robots and testing
those algorithms in real-world environments. 

Manipulation: A successful candidate will have a background in manipulation
development for robotic systems, with a focus on intelligent grasping of
objects. The candidate will be developing intelligent grasping capabilities
for the Valkyrie bipedal humanoid, integrating perception data with
haptic/force data to increase the current autonomous manipulation
capabilities of Valkyrie. The ideal candidate will have experience
developing robotic software using ROS on Linux Ubuntu operating systems,
Python and C++ programming experience, and experience using the Git version
control system. It is highly desired that the candidate has experience in
dual-armed manipulation and/or humanoid manipulation. It is also desired
that the candidate has experience with physical robots and testing
manipulation algorithms in real-world environments. 

Tactile Sensing: A successful candidate will have a background in tactile
sensing (systems integration and data processing) for robotic systems. The
candidate will analyze existing tactile sensing in NASA's Valkyrie robot
hand, and will explore the potential to increase sensing capabilities with
existing modular fingers. The candidate will formulate and plan a technology
development path to improve finger and sensor design and integration to
support improved manipulation capabilities to handle fine motions without
haptic feedback to an operator. The ideal candidate will have experience
developing robotic software using ROS on Linux Ubuntu operating systems,
Python, and C++ programming experience. Experience in both hardware
integration and algorithm development and experimental validation is

Each position is expected to be funded for twelve months. The candidate must
be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, as the majority of his/her duties
will be performed at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX. Candidates
are expected to produce at least one scientific publication while funded and
will be expected to provide documentation of all development and a final
report upon conclusion of the position. 

Application Process:  Interested applicants should send, in a single email
with 'POST-DOC' in the subject line, to omalleym at rice.edu, the following
1.  In the body of the email:
     a.  A summary of research background and interests (<300 words)
     b.  Doctoral dissertation topic
     c.  Desired / available start date
2.  As attachments (pdf)
     a.  Curriculum vitae including list of publications
     b.  Contact information for at least 3 references

Review of applications will begin immediately, and applicants are strongly
encouraged to apply by September 1, 2018 for strongest consideration. Start
dates are intended to be between September 1 and December 31, 2018.
Applications for these positions received after November 1, 2018, will not
be considered.


Rice University, an equal opportunity employer and a Tier 1 Research
University, is located in the vibrant urban setting of Houston, TX, the
fourth largest city in the U.S. The MAHI Lab, directed by Prof Marcia
O'Malley, focuses on the design, manufacture, and evaluation of mechatronic
or robotic systems to model, rehabilitate, enhance or augment the human
sensorimotor control system. To this end, we employ analytical and
experimental approaches from the field of dynamic systems and controls, with
inspiration from human motor control and neuroscience.

The Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC) is the National Aeronautics and
Space Administration's Manned Spacecraft Center, where human spaceflight
training, research, and flight control are conducted. The Robotic Systems
Technology Branch is responsible for the research, engineering, development,
integration, and application of robotic hardware and software technologies
for specific flight and ground robotic system applications in support of
human spaceflight. The vision is to have humans and robots working
side-by-side in the pursuit of exploration. Advanced robotic systems
technology efforts include both remotely controlled and autonomous robots
for space and terrestrial application, as well as intelligent robotics for
high value functionality. Technology focal areas within the Branch include:
Autonomy, Dexterous Manipulation, Human-Robot Interaction, Embedded Control
Systems, Simulation, Tele-presence, Power Dense Actuation, and Sensing.

Marcia K. O'Malley (Marcie), Ph.D.
Stanley C. Moore Professor of  Mechanical Engineering
Director of Graduate Studies in Mechanical Engineering
Special Advisor to the Provost on Education and Research Initiatives for
Collaborative Health (ENRICH) 
Rice University

6100 Main Street MS 321
Houston, TX 77005-1892
Phone: (713) 348-3545, Fax: (713) 348-5423
omalleym at rice.edu - https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__mech.rice.edu_users_omalleym&d=DwICAg&c=clK7kQUTWtAVEOVIgvi0NU5BOUHhpN0H8p7CSfnc_gI&r=0w3solp5fswiyWF2RL6rSs8MCeFamFEPafDTOhgTfYI&m=aO5AWgwWDpM6OUZxvbZdODYZna4apaE1Tm1B7GUIGos&s=M_q-nKLeR-yNjJQ4JBsH46gR2lsK04My7q0icFKw3s8&e= 

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