Loughborough University Featured PhD Programmes
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Featured PhD Programmes
Loughborough University Featured PhD Programmes

Fabrication of Magnetically-driven Soft Continuum Robots


School of Mechanical Engineering

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Prof R Harris , Prof P Valdastri No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

Magnetically-driven Soft Robots are of increasing interest due to the range of new transformative applications they may enable. Within these are continuum robots which are of particular focus due to their potential to be used within the body to perform diagnostics and treatments. This project will involve collaboration between leading researchers at the University of Leeds and the internationally-renowned Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems (MPI-IS) and its Director, Professor Metin Sitti, to research new opportunities to advance these devices through new fabrication processes and methods.

This specific project will focus on the possibilities for novel digitally-driven fabrication processes to enable new forms of locomotion and robotic functionality to be realised in soft continuum robots. This will include the investigation of fabrication processes that allow a greater range of elastomeric and magnetic materials to be explored and alternative compositional designs to be created. This research will conducted with unique manufacturing processes that comprise electro-mechanical apparatus that operate under computer-control.

It is expected this project will make contributions to the design and engineering of new process capability with specialised areas of study that may include (but not exclusive to): Machine design and engineering, materials engineering for manufacturing processes, computer-aided-manufacture, 3D/4D printing methods for miniature soft robotics, associated studies of component design and process control/analysis.

It will be conducted within the Future Manufacturing Processes Research Group at the University of Leeds. The group is well equipped with new laboratories, and dedicated administrative and technical support. The group have been recognised, by extensive external peer review, to be World Leading.

Funding Notes

UK/EU – Academic Fees at Home/EU fee rate of £4,600 in Session 2020/21 and Maintenance matching EPSRC rates (£15,285 in Session 2020/21) per year for 3 years. Funding is awarded on a competitive basis.
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