Neural Implants for Brain-Robot Interface
(4 year MRes + PhD studentship)
This project is one of 11 studentships on offer in the Imperial College EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Neurotechnology for Life and Health
Supervisors: Ravi Vaidyanathan (Mechanical Engineering), Peter Brown (Brain Network Dynamics Unit, University of Oxford)
Brain-machine interface (BMI) seeks to establish robust links between the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral devices and/or robotic mechanisms (e.g. medical implants, neural stimulators, robotic limbs, etc). An exciting new direction in this field involves the use of electrodes implanted in the brain for interface, ideally supporting paralyzed or neurally impaired patients by bypassing damaged regions of the brain. The goal of this study is to establish new forms of invasive recording in the brain for human augmentation and robotic assist. It will involve recording experiments to quantify the relationship between electrical activity in key regions the brain and motor control, signal processing to extract features related to intended movement, and real-time robot control (grasping) experiments triggered by invasively recorded neural activity.
NOTE: This project is co-supervised through the Medical Research Council Brain Network Dynamics Unit at the University of Oxford. The successful candidate, while hosted at Imperial College London, will also spend part of their research time in Oxford for implanted neural recording experiments.
The CDT programme is not a standard PhD programme. Throughout the 4 years, there is considerable emphasis upon multidisciplinary and transferable skills, through centre activities beyond the individual research project. The programme cannot be taken without the first (MRes Neurotechnology) year, as it is an integral part of the overall programme.
Applicants should have (or expect to obtain) a first or upper second class degree (or non-UK equivalent) in an engineering or physical science subject. Students with a biological and medical sciences background may be considered, but candidates must have sufficient quantitative skills to thrive in the programme. You should be looking for a challenging, multi-disciplinary PhD at the interface of neuroscience and engineering.
To apply online, visit www.imperial.ac.uk/neurotechnology/cdt/apply/
If you have questions or would like further information about the project, we encourage you to contact the supervisors directly before making your formal application.
Studentships pay UK/EU tuition fees, stipend and a generous consumables and travel fund for the duration of the programme (one year of MRes and 3 years of PhD).
Places are open to UK and EU applicants only.
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