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Development of highly stretchable and conductive polymer composites for next-generation photoplethysmography sensing with wearable healthcare applications


   Centre for Intelligent Healthcare

   Thursday, October 20, 2022  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Coventry University (CU) is inviting applications from suitably-qualified graduates for a fully-funded PhD studentship. The successful candidates will join the project ‘Development of highly stretchable and conductive polymer composites for next-generation photoplethysmography sensing with wearable healthcare applications’ led by Dr Haipeng Liu (wearable sensor development, physiological measurement and biosignal processing) and Prof Dingchang Zheng (photoplethysmography and healthcare technology) at Coventry University. 

Objective:

In this 4-year PhD project, IMRE and Coventry groups will be working together to explore advanced nanomaterials-based Photoplethysmography (PPG) sensors with long-term biocompatibility, flexibility and stretchability.

Workplan:

The project will be implemented in three stages.

Stage 1. Development of nanostructured polymers (Month 1-24, commonly contributed)

Based on literature and existing experimental datasets in A*STAR, different combinations of advanced nanomaterials will be designed and incorporated into PDMS matrix to improve the mechanical and electrical properties.

Stage 2. Fabrication of PPG sensors using nanostructured PDMS (Month 25-36, A*STAR-led)

Different nano/macro additives will be integrated into PDMS to improve the electrical conductivity of PDMS, which can effectively remove the electrophysiological and other high-frequency electric noises from PPG signals, as well as enhance the reliability of skin attachment to minimize motion artefacts, thus improve the sensitivity of PPG sensors. Bespoke miniaturized PPG sensors will be fabricated.

Stage 3. Sensor test and evaluation (Month 37-48, Coventry-led)

To achieve reliable recording of high-quality PPG signals in different application scenarios, nanomaterial-based bespoke PPG sensors will be tested in different physiological conditions. The performance of the sensor will be comprehensively evaluated in comparison with existing PPG sensors.

Requirement on candidates and essential support:

We welcome highly motivated candidates who have a background in optics, nanotechnology, and sensor design. The PhD project requires working with chemists, biomedical engineers, and data scientists at different stages. The student will be well trained in nanotechnology (by A*STAR), physiological measurement (by Coventry University), and essential research skills for sustainable development towards an independent researcher in the area of healthcare technology.

For further details see: https://www.coventry.ac.uk/research/research-students/making-an-application/


Funding Notes

bursary plus tuition fees - UK/EU/International

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