PhD position - Mechanics & control in human robot interaction

Updated: 2 months ago
Job Type: Temporary
Deadline: 01 Oct 2020

The Department of Biomechanical Engineering (BE) within the Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET) at the University of Twente (UT) has an opening for a full-time, 4-year, fully-funded PhD project in the control of human-robot interaction!

The challenge

With an ever-growing an increasing aging population, the pressure on our healthcare systems is expected to grow. To prevent exceeding worker capacity in the healthcare sector, and to prevent reducing the quality of life of the people receiving care, solutions are required that allows existing medical staff to perform the various healthcare-related tasks more efficiently, and allow those tasks to be executed more autonomously, with minimal human intervention and supervision.

Robotic workers that collaborate with human staff could alleviate said pressure. Unfortunately, most current robots do not perform well when tasks and environments are not explicitly defined. Hence there is a need for robots that can flexibly learn to execute new interaction tasks, and generalize learned knowledge to new scenarios.

Job description

We are looking for a highly motivated PhD candidate to strengthen our research. You will work in a multidisciplinary setting to bring together aspects from machine learning, tele-operation, computer vision, simulation, and control. Specifically, you will 1) create interfaces that allows a human to demonstrate new movements to a state-of-the-art humanoid robot, such as through tele-operation, 2) use collected demonstration data and machine learning techniques to teach a robot new autonomous movements or tele-operator support, 3) Investigate methods to generalize learned motion control for application in new scenarios.

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