Research Assistant/Fellow in Mechatronics for Medical Devices

Duration – 4 years; Salary – ca. £35-41k p.a.; Deadline – 25th June 2023

Project description:

The physical-mechanical interactions that shape our skulls during infancy are poorly understood. This lack of fundamental knowledge limits our ability to advance treatment of a wide range of craniofacial conditions mostly affecting children. This is a significant engineering challenge due to the complexity of this system.

You will be working in Moazen Lab on an EPSRC funded project (CranioMech). Your main role would be to lead on various in/ex vivo animal experiments. This will include designing the required experimental set up, assembling the equipment, developing the control program to run the set up, analysing the results and presenting the finding in the format of journal articles and presentations to the wider community.

Person specification:

You are expected to have a strong background in control engineering and have previous experience in designing and developing costume experimental set up for in/ex vivo animal experiments. You should have a PhD in a relevant discipline (e.g. Bio/Medical/Control Engineering) or be nearing completion. Appointment at Grade 7 is dependent upon having been awarded a PhD; if this is not the case, initial appointment will be at Grade 6B (salary £34,502 – £36,348 per annum including London Allowance), with payment at Grade 7 being backdated to the date of final submission of the PhD Thesis.

Any queries related to the position should be addressed to Prof Mehran Moazen ([email protected]). Please see the following link for more information about this role and to apply for this position.

PhD Studentship in Craniofacial Biomechanics

Duration – 4 years; Stipend – standard UCL stipend ca. £20k p.a.

This funding is available to UK students only or those who have UK settlement status.

Project description:

The human skull consists of several bones that are joined together along their edges by dense soft tissues called sutures. Once the brain and skull have reached their full adult size, the sutures fuse together to create a single bony structure. Early closure of the sutures (craniosynostosis) occurs in 1 in 2000 births and may result in functional abnormalities of craniofacial system unless there is surgical intervention. However, even after intervention, some children redevelop raised intracranial pressure requiring further surgical procedure.

The aim of this research project is to optimise management of craniosynostosis from a biomechanical point of view. The long term goal of the work is to provide advice to surgeons on when to operate and how best to manage the condition from a biomechanical point of view to ensure the best possible outcome for the child. This project is a joint collaboration between UCL Mechanical Engineering and several UK/EU partners. It may require the student to travel to other centres and possibly spend time in those centres.

Person specification:

Applicants should have a strong background (at least a 2.1 honours degree or predicted) in an appropriate engineering discipline (e.g. Mechanical and Biomedical). Previous experience in finite element method, use of ANSYS/ABAQUS finite element software, image processing, and geometric morphometric methods would be an advantage.  The candidate must be self-motivated, take the lead in running the project and liaise the collaboration between the project partners. You must meet UCL English language requirements.

Any queries related to the position should be addressed to Prof Mehran Moazen ([email protected]).  We will be continuously having informal discussion with interested candidates until this position is filled.