Fraunhofer IPA, located in Stuttgart/Germany, is a leading centre for applied research in robotics and automation in one of the most innovative industrial areas world-wide (e.g. automotive industries, machinery and automation equipment suppliers). Our department “Robot and Assistive Systems" http://www.ipa.fraunhofer.de/en/robot_assistivesystems develops robotic systems and their key components for various fields of application. It comprises over 60 researchers most of whom are working towards their PhD.
A prominent example of our R&D work is the robotic home assistant Care-O-bot (www.care-o-bot.de) that embodies a future product vision while at the same time acting as a technology test bed. Recently awarded the RedDot “Best of the Best” design award, Care-O-bot 4 unifies world-class mechatronic engineering with advanced robot capabilities and software engineering for autonomous systems. For a variety of industrial customers, we actively work on transferring technologies and applications developed on Care-O-bot to new products and solutions: from production and logistics to public environments, care facilities and private homes.
The SOCRATES (SOcial Cognitive Robotic Agents in The European Society, www.socrates-projekt.eu) project is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie European Training Network (ETN) with the primary aim to train a new generation of researchers on various aspects of interactive social robotics aiming at eldercare. The wide range of projects covers a spectrum from technical design of hardware and interaction methodology, to personalisation, user studies, and robot ethics. The Early-Stage Research (ESR) fellows will gain experience from an inter-sectoral programme involving universities, research institutes, large and SME companies from public and private sectors. They will be trained with both academic and entrepreneurial spirit and expertise, well suited for a career in both academy and industry. Specifically, they will be supported to work towards their PhD which will be awarded by Fraunhofer IPA in cooperation with Stuttgart University.
For this particular position, the research goal is to study how the hardware of mobile service robots can be implemented in a modular way allowing to adapt them to individual user´s needs. Furthermore, generic guidelines and rules for the design of modular service robots applied in eldercare shall be developed. The researcher will study how interaction quality is related to specific and general design choices. Based on selected use cases, Care-O-bot 4, which already provides a modular hardware structure, will be extended with new user-specific application modules.
What we expect from you
We are searching for an ambitious researcher and unique innovator (earned masters’ degree in industrial design, mechanical engineering, mechatronics or related field) with significant experience and deep understanding in the area of developing new mechatronic components and integrated solutions in service robotics. The candidate must have completed his/her degree with proven outstanding academic results. The candidate has strong skills in designing technical solutions with attractive appearance and significant construction experience in Solid Works or similar CAD programs. Good knowledge of the English and ideally the German language allow him/her to communicate with local and international partners.
The following conditions apply
Qualifications and research experience: Early-stage researchers shall, at the time of recruitment by the host organisation, be in the first four years of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree.
Nationality: The researcher may be of any nationality.
Mobility: At the time of recruitment by the host organisation, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host organisation (Germany) for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the reference date. For refugees under the Geneva Convention the refugee procedure (i.e. before refugee status is conferred) will not be counted as ‘period of residence/activity in the country of the beneficiary’.
Duration and predicted start: The contract will be awarded for three years with a predicted starting date April 2017 or as soon as the position can be filled.
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