Senior Research Officer

University of Essex – School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering

The Project

Applications are invited for a fixed term postdoctoral research position in the EPSRC funded project “Robust Remote Sensing for Multi-modal Characterization in Nuclear and Other Extreme Environments”. Spanning three continents, the exclusive project consortium has a truly international outlook, with highly cross-disciplinary teams of researchers involved from world renowned research organisations in the UK (University of Essex, University of Birmingham, NNL), USA (NASA Jet Propulsion Lab) and Japan (JAEA).

This project addresses the problem of “characterisation” of extreme environments (EE), by deploying and combining information from a variety of different remote sensing modalities. Although our primary focus is on remote sensing, we will also work with robots needed to deploy remote sensors into extreme environments. Specifically, within this project, we will develop new methods for designing embedded systems hardware and software, to provide redundancy, resilience and robustness against damage by various extreme environments and harsh conditions (such as thermal stress). Hardware and software can be designed with redundancies to add robustness.

Furthermore, innovative techniques can be used to enable such systems to check themselves for errors and take remedial action. The overall aim is to extend lifetimes and increase reliability of: remote sensors, their associated hardware and software, and the control systems of the robots that must deploy such sensors in extreme environments. We will develop new techniques that employ empirical measurements to assess the system states during operation, and control re-configuration to "self-heal" a system that operates in a hostile environment. This will be complemented with techniques that derive systems metrics directly from properties of electronic systems (ICMetrics), enabling online assessment of changes in the operation state of the systems, while also provide a device fingerprint to facilitate secure communications.

Further information about the project can be found at:

http://gow.epsrc.ac.uk/NGBOViewGrant.aspx?GrantRef=EP/P017487/1

The Role and Duties

The successful applicant will work at the Embedded and Intelligent Systems Research Lab at the University of Essex (one of the top research-intensive universities in the UK). The School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering (CSEE) is well known internationally for its work on Artificial Intelligence, Communications, Robotics and Embedded Systems technology. The Embedded and Intelligent Systems Research Lab at Essex has significant experimental embedded engineering resources, and the joint Robotics and Embedded Systems Group (with 6 academics as well as 20+ postdocs and postgraduate students) has been identified as a major hotspot in UK robotics research in the recent Witty review. You will also join other outstanding researchers at other project member institutions: University of Birmingham, NNL, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab (USA), JAEA (Japan).

The main duties of the role will include measuring and modelling the degradation of sensors, circuits and software under various extreme environments; developing new methods for designing resilience into hardware and software for remote sensors; producing journal and conference papers; presenting work at conferences and other research dissemination events and liaising and collaborating with other project members, including travelling to other project sites when required. The post holder will also be expected to produce and maintain the necessary software tools used in and/ or developed for this project.

Qualifications and Skills required

Applicants should have an MSc or equivalent level of experience in Electronic Engineering or Computer Science related discipline as well as experience of working in collaborative research projects. A PhD in a relevant discipline or equivalent level of experience is desirable.

Candidates will have significant experience in the following:

Embedded systems design and development support technology, measurement and modelling of the degradation of sensors, circuits and software under various extreme environments, designing resilience into embedded hardware and software. Applicants are also expected to have a strong publication record. Good programming skills are also required in one of the commonly used languages, such as C/C++, MATLAB.

This post is expected to start as soon as possible after interviews have taken place.

At the University of Essex internationalism is central to who we are and what we do. We are committed to being a cosmopolitan, internationally-oriented university that is welcoming to staff and students from all countries and a university where you can find the world in one place.

Please use the ‘Apply’ button below to read further information about this role including the full job description and person specification which outlines the full duties, skills, qualifications and experience needed for this role. You will also find details of how to make your application here.

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