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  Dexterous robotic manipulation in a human-centred environment

   School of Physics, Engineering and Technology

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  Dr Jihong Zhu  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

York Robotic Manipulation Lab has two research themes:

  • Deformable object manipulation (DOM)
  • Assistive manipulation for caregiving (AssistMan)

For DOM, I am interested in combining vision and tactile feedback for manipulation. In contrast to tradition motion planning where the purpose of the planner is to avoid contact, for DOM, it is favourable to establish contact for easier manipulation. Another possible topic is to investigate the contact representation in DOM.

For AssistMan, I am interested in data efficient imitation learning for human centered manipulation task.

You are also welcomed to propose your own project related to robot manipulation.

Projects can be tailored to be more theoretical (focuses on developing novel algorithms) or practical (focuses on developing fancy new tasks) depending on the candidate expertise and interests.

The Robotics lab is equipped with state of the art robotic systems:

The PI has strong connections with TU Delft (the Netherlands), Honda Research Institute Europe (Germany). In France, the PI still maintains close collaboration with the Interactive Digital Humans (IDH) team at LIRMM and in Hong Kong with ROMI Lab at PolyU. The PI has built throughout the years an extensive network with top robotic institutions across Europe, Asia and the US. The PI encourages collaboration and academic exchanges, thus the PhD candidate will have abundant opportunities for collaboration.

Entry requirements:

Candidates should have (or expect to obtain) a minimum of a UK upper second class honours degree (2.1) or equivalent in Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Physics, Computer Science, Mathematics or a closely related subject.

How to apply:

Applicants should apply via the University’s online application system at Please read the application guidance first so that you understand the various steps in the application process.

Engineering (12)

Funding Notes

This is a self-funded project and you will need to have sufficient funds in place (eg from scholarships, personal funds and/or other sources) to cover the tuition fees and living expenses for the duration of the research degree programme. Please check the School of Physics, Engineering and Technology website for details about funding opportunities at York.
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