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Design and Control of Self-sensing Soft Actuators and Robots


Department of Mechanical Engineering

Bath United Kingdom Mechanical Engineering Materials Science

About the Project

The University of Bath is inviting applications for the following PhD project commencing in October 2021.

Funding is available to candidates who qualify for ‘Home’ fee status. Following the UK’s departure from the European Union, the rules governing fee status have changed and, therefore, candidates from the EU/EEA are advised to check their eligibility before applying. Please see the Funding Eligibility section below for more information.

Lead Supervisor: Dr Min Pan

Project enquiries:

PROJECT:

New materials and technologies in sensing and actuation have led to the development of soft actuators and robots for biomedical systems, assistive devices, exploration and rescue. The use of integrated actuation-sensing materials in such system is gaining interest, but there are few examples were the body of the actuator or soft robot acts as the sensing element. The development of smart soft actuators that have inherent sensing capabilities can provide advantages of high sensitivity, ease of manufacture and cost efficiency, without impairing actuator dynamics. This project aims to design and develop self-sensing soft actuators and robots that can measure in-situ deformation and construct effective control systems for soft actuators. The creation of soft self-sensing actuators is a promising approach for control and operation of future soft robots.

The research outcomes will benefit a wide range of engineering sectors including robotics, intelligent manufacturing, healthcare, rescue and exploration in extreme environments in the UK and worldwide.

CANDIDATE:

Applicants should hold, or expect to receive, a First Class or good Upper Second Class Honours degree (or the equivalent). A master’s level qualification would also be advantageous.

APPLICATIONS:

Formal applications should be made via the University of Bath’s online application form for a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. Please ensure that you state the full project title and lead supervisor name on the application form.

https://samis.bath.ac.uk/urd/sits.urd/run/siw_ipp_lgn.login?process=siw_ipp_app&code1=RDUME-FP01&code2=0015

More information about applying for a PhD at Bath may be found here:

http://www.bath.ac.uk/guides/how-to-apply-for-doctoral-study/

Expected start date: 4 October 2021

Funding Eligibility:

In order to be considered for a studentship, you must qualify as a ‘Home’ student. The UK Government has not yet published the relevant Fee Regulations for courses commencing in 2021/22; however, our current understanding is that the main categories of students likely to qualify for ‘Home’ fees are (subject to confirmation by the UK Government):

·        UK nationals (meeting residency requirement*)

·        Irish nationals resident in the UK/Ireland since at least September 2018

·        EU/EEA applicants with settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme (meeting residency requirement*)

·        Applicants with indefinite leave to enter/remain in the UK (meeting residency requirement*)

*Residency requirement: in most cases applicants must have lived in the UK, EU, EEA or Switzerland continuously since September 2018.

EU/EEA citizens who live outside the UK are unlikely to be eligible for ‘Home’ fees and funding.

Up-to-date information may be found on our fee status guidance webpage and on the UKCISA website


Funding Notes

A studentship includes ‘Home’ tuition fees, a stipend (£15,285 per annum, 2020/21 rate) and research/training expenses (£1,000 per annum) for up to 3.5 years.

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