Postdoctoral RA/Research Associate in Circuit and System Design for Bio-hybrid Systems

2 days left

Durham, United Kingdom
£36,333 to £43,155 per annum
10 Mar 2023
End of advertisement period
31 Mar 2023
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

The Role

We are looking for a Research Associate to perform circuit and system design for new types of complex bio-hybrid entities - miniature robotic platforms that integrate electronics with biology. The role will involve the creation of ultra-low power instrumentation circuits for measuring physiological parameters such as movement and electrophysiology, electrical impedance spectrography and multiple biosensors, and passing the collected data to a processing back-end via a wireless link. Significant innovation will be required in the circuits and system design in order to meet the challenging power budget present while using commercially available off-the-shelf electronic devices. This will necessitate hardware, firmware, and potentially some software level design. Our devices aim to operate underwater, and so robust and maintenance free operation is critical, and will necessitate skills in both electronic design and enclosure design.

The work is part of the EU-H2020 funded project "Robocoenosis: ROBOts in cooperation with a bioCOENOSIS" which aims to create a novel paradigm of "life form in the loop" which will allow the development of new types of complex bio-hybrid entities, putting together different living organisms and technological elements using a symbiotic/mutualistic method. The current role focuses on the instrumentation and bio-hybrid aspects of the project, principally through discrete component circuit design in Altium (or similar) with some data processing in Python (or similar). The project is highly multidisciplinary and will involve working with Biologists, Computer scientists, Roboticists from leading European Universities.

This position will ideally suit applicants with an interest in developing ultra low power circuit and system design skills. Expertise in circuit design (ideally using Altium) are essential. We are not constrained to using any one technique or architecture for minimising power and integrating the system, instead individuals with a creative approach to problem solving are desired. Nevertheless, experience of design with Texas Instruments components and software tools, and RF communication, would be beneficial. In addition, some hands on data collection in the bio-hybrid ecosystem must be performed and so applicants must be willing to get involved in experimental work in the field. Previous experience with Python and algorithms for providing simple data processing and cleaning would be beneficial, or training can be provided if necessary. Experience of design using flexible PCB substrates (e.g. Kapton) would be beneficial but not essential, as would experience with electrode interface manufacture (e.g. printed Silver). Skills in these areas can be taught if required.

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