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Επτά (7) θέσεις για εκπόνηση διδακτορικού με πλήρη υποτροφία στον τομέα της Ρομποτικής και Βιονικής στο University of Auckland (New Zealand)


Σας ενημερώνουμε ότι έχουν προκηρυχθεί επτά (7) θέσεις με πλήρη υποτροφία στον τομέα της Ρομποτικής και Βιονικής από το Πανεπιστήμιο Auckland - New Zealand. Επιστημονικός Υπεύθυνος: Μηνάς Λιαροκάπης


PhD Positions - New Dexterity Lab (

Biomechatronics Research Group

Department of Mechanical Engineering - Faculty of Engineering, University of Auckland

Applications are invited for multiple fully-funded PhD positions in the fields of robotics, biomechatronics and biomechanics.

The projects involve an exciting new collaboration with a team across the University of Auckland (, the New Dexterity Lab ( and the OpenBionics Initiative ( 


Available Research Projects


1. Development of Adaptive Robotic and Prosthetic Hands

Description: This project will focus on the development of a new class of simple, adaptive robot hands for robust grasping and dexterous, in-hand manipulation. The designs will demonstrate the adaptive behaviour of compliant, under-actuated grippers and their superior grasping capabilities under uncertainties. In this project, we will also explore alternative uses of structural compliance for the development of grasping mechanisms. The devices will be fabricated using rapid prototyping techniques.

This project will be done in collaboration with the OpenBionics Initiative and will result in the creation of an open-source repository for the New Dexterity Lab robot hand designs.


2. Robust Grasping and Dexterous, In-Hand Manipulation with Adaptive Hands

Description: This project will focus on the formulation of hybrid methodologies that combine analytical methods, constrained optimization schemes and machine learning techniques to facilitate the execution of robust grasping and dexterous, in-hand manipulation tasks with adaptive robot hands.

The project will take advantage of the robotic devices developed in the New Dexterity Lab (outcomes of project #1).


3. Blind Robot Grasping and Haptic Object Identification with Adaptive Hands

Description: This project will focus on blind grasping and haptic object identification with adaptive hands. These goals will be achieved by formulating hybrid schemes that will leverage the benefits of simple, adaptive robot grippers (that can grasp successfully without prior knowledge of the hand or the object model), with simple sensors and advanced machine learning techniques.

The applications of this project will be in the fields of industrial and warehouse automation, object quality and environment inspection. This project will take advantage of the robotic devices developed in the New Dexterity Lab (outcomes of Project #1).


4. Development of Affordable, Adaptive, Personalized Exo-Suits and Wearable Robotic Devices.

Description: This project will focus on the development of affordable, light-weight, adaptive, personalized exo-suits and human augmentation devices (e.g., exoskeletons, bionic gloves, wearable interfaces etc.), that will assist people in everyday life tasks, augmenting their capabilities. The particular devices may facilitate interaction not only with the physical world surrounding us, but also with various electronic devices and/or virtual environments.

This project will be done in collaboration with the OpenBionics initiative.


5. Development of Novel Brain Machine Interfaces for Human-Robot Interaction, Prosthetics and Rehabilitation Robotics

Description: This project will focus on the development of novel Brain Machine Interfaces for the control of robotic and bionic devices. The interfaces will take advantage of a combination of sensors and signals, will employ state-of-the-art machine learning methodologies and shared control schemes and they will provide robust, intuitive and minimal effort control to the user.

The brain machine interfaces that will be developed in this project will be used for the control of the robotic and bionic devices of the New Dexterity Lab (outcomes of projects #1 and #4).


6. Assessment and Evaluation of the Anthropomorphism and Dexterity of Robotic and Bionic Devices

Description: Over the last decades, a lot of researchers have characterized their robots as dexterous and/or anthropomorphic without really assessing their level of dexterity and human-likeness and without comparing them with similar devices. This project will focus on the assessment and evaluation of the different aspects of anthropomorphism and dexterity of robotic and bionic devices (e.g., appearance, kinematics, compliance, force exertion capability etc.), extracting metrics for design optimization.

The design optimization part will focus on the prosthetic and bionic devices of the New Dexterity Lab (outcomes of projects #1 and #4).


7. Analysis and Evaluation of the Human Hand Dexterity and Grasping Capabilities

Description: The human hand, Nature's most versatile and dexterous end-effector has sensory and motor capabilities that endow it with unique properties and a degree of specialization that is not evident in other human body parts. The Greek philosophers Anaxagoras (~500 - 428 BC) and Aristotle (384 - 322 BC) debated in their works, whether the dexterity of human hand helped humans develop a superior brain or the superior brain increased human hand dexterity. The mechanical dexterity of human hand is nowadays recognized, as the major factor that facilitated the development of a superior brain by the Homo sapiens.

This project will focus on the analysis of the human hand dexterity and on the evaluation of the human hand grasping capabilities. We will investigate the organization of the grasping and manipulation strategies that the humans employ for the execution of everyday life tasks, in order to better understand what makes the human hand so efficient and to provide specifications for the design of new robotic hands and novel grasping and manipulation algorithms.


The University of Auckland, NZ

The University of Auckland is New Zealand's pre-eminent research-led University, based in the centre of the highly desirable Auckland City. It employs over 5400 academic and professional staff to support over 41,000 students making us one of NZ's largest employers. The Faculty of Engineering is also the country's largest and most successful with a roll of more than 3,900 students and a strong focus on research. We offer a diverse and active community for research and we are proud of our strong international reputation for the quality of our research outputs. We have collaborative links with research groups and industry within New Zealand and across the world.

The University is committed to meeting its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi and achieving equity outcomes for staff and students. It provides on-site early childhood education centres for babies and pre-school children; it has parental leave and flexible work policies which support a balance between work, life, family and caring responsibilities.





B.S./B.E., Diploma or M.S./M.E. Degree in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Biomedical Engineering or other relevant field (with high GPA).

Excellent written and oral English communication.

Good initiative and time management skills.

Strong programming skills are desirable.

Experience working with human participants is desirable.

Strong background in robotics and/or biomechatronics is desirable.


Starting Date

ASAP, but negotiable.



The University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship provides a tax-free stipend of up to $27,300 per annum in 2017, with an annual cost of living adjustment to the stipend value, for up to 36 months for students enrolled in a PhD, DClinPsy or the research component of another approved doctorate. In addition, compulsory tuition fees will be covered for up to 36 months for all domestic students and for international students. International students will also receive compulsory international student health cover.

More details, terms and conditions can be found in this link


Candidates should e-mail a single pdf including a cover letter describing their background and motivation, a CV, 3 references and transcripts of their bachelor and/or master studies to:

Dr. Minas Liarokapis (

More details can be found in: | |

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