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Research Associate in Acoustic Sensing

University of Sheffield - Faculty of Engineering - Department of Mechanical Engineering

Location: Sheffield
Salary: £31,302 to £39,609 per annum. Grade 7
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 12th June 2019
Closes: 12th July 2019
Job Ref: UOS022920

Contract Type: Fixed-term for 36 months with an anticipated start date of 1 September 2019.


Are you interested in working for a world top 100 University? A great opportunity has arisen for a research associate to join a prestigious Programme Grant funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and led by the University of Sheffield. The Grant aims to develop a new swarm robotics technology platform for buried pipe inspection which can measure the pipe conditions (for example leaks and blockages) and their deterioration autonomously and pervasively. Your part will be to design, model, test and to integrate new sensor solutions (mainly acoustic but also other types, for example optical or RF) with small robots which will be able to navigate, communicate and sense the environment while being left inside the pipe. These robots will be manufactured at the EPSRC National Facility for Innovative Robotics Systems at Leeds. A key outcome of this Grant will be the specification of the new sensing platform and signal processing algorithms to be used by the industry as the next generation of autonomous inspection solutions for buried pipes. This new technology will yield a step change in the way the buried pipes are inspected, rehabilitated and managed.

This role offers you the opportunity to develop new fluid-borne sensors to be carried by robots in a pipe, simulate their performance using a valid numerical model, to integrate these sensors with a working robot prototype and to validate their simulated performance experimentally. It is expected that the results of this work will be sufficiently novel and significant to warrant their publication in refereed academic journals.

You will have strong theoretical and experimental skills, understanding of the wave phenomena particularly relevant to acoustics, signal processing, numerical modelling skills and to have the ability to write computer code and to analyse experimental data efficiently. You should be self-motivated, able to work both independently and as part of a large, trans-disciplinary team, and have the ability to present and communicate complex information to our partners and potential customers in a concise and clear form.

You will hold a good BEng/MEng level degree (minimum 2:1) and a PhD in Engineering, Physics, Computing, Mathematics or related discipline. Some experience in buried pipe infrastructure or robotics will be beneficial.

The post holder must be willing to undertake frequent travel within the UK and overseas.

Please contact Professor Kirill V. Horoshenkov at or on 0114 222 7855 for any further information.

We’re one of the best not-for-profit organisations to work for in the UK. The University’s Total Reward Package includes a competitive salary, a generous Pension Scheme and annual leave entitlement, as well as access to a range of learning and development courses to support your personal and professional development.

We build teams of people from different heritages and lifestyles from across the world, whose talent and contributions complement each other to greatest effect. We believe diversity in all its forms delivers greater impact through research, teaching and student experience.

To find out what makes the University of Sheffield a remarkable place to work, watch this short film:, and follow @sheffielduni and @ShefUniJobs on Twitter for more information.

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