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Leader in Integrated ICT Hardware & Systems

Researcher in Smart Sensing and IoT for Agriculture

DZO-01 Researcher in Smart Sensing and IoT for Agriculture

Contract: Full Time/Fixed Term - initially for 24 months with the possibility of extension beyond that subject to performance and funding.

The Wireless Sensor Network Group (WSN) at the Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork is currently advertising for the position of Postdoctoral Researcher in Smart Sensing and IoT for Agriculture.

The Tyndall National Institute is a world leader in the development of Smart Sensing systems for use in the body, on the body and around the body. Working closely with a global range of academic, business and clinical partners, our technology is under evaluation by several multinational corporations and is approaching market readiness in a number of areas. 

As part of the recently funded ERA-Net project HALY.ID cofunded by DAFM and in conjunction with Teagasc – the center for Agricultural Research, the Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) group is developing a world leading research activity to enable smart sensing systems for integration and deployment in to the farms of the future.

IoT for Smart Agriculture

Globally, agriculture is undergoing seismic disruptions arising from the competing challenges of food security, the environment, and societal needs. Driven by the quest of improving sustainability, HALY.ID proposes an autonomous field-monitoring system and an autonomous fruit-monitoring system to replace common human-based field monitoring of pests and detect the internally damaged fruits invisible to the naked-eye. This system is based on data collection and processing with new emerging technologies (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Vision sensors, spectroscopy, Edge Computing, LPWAN Communications, NIR-HSI, microwave/THz) enhanced by Algorithmic and Machine Learning techniques.

The successful Postdoctoral Researcher will work on the development of data acquisition systems using IoT devices and drones. This includes the smart monitoring of the local micro-climate, the acquisition of multimedia content, as well as the path planning of drones to acquire and collect data. Due to the nature of the deployment, both short and long-range communication methods will be used to transfer the findings to the cloud or from the IoT devices to the drones. A number of edge computing approaches and trade-offs between the quality of sensing and energy consumption will be explored both for the IoT devices and the drones.

The successful applicant will carry out their research project within this team which has expertise in microsystems technology, wireless sensors, electronics and low-power system hardware and software design.

Activities will include applied domain focused research in to IoT smart sensing research including drone path planning, constrained system image processing and analysis, quality of detection and communications optimization over low data rate communications protocols.

The candidate will be expected to supervise postgraduate students as part of the project management team, write scientific publications associated with their work and travel to international conferences, workshops, industry meetings, proposal project meetings. This will help to strategically position Tyndall WSN as a world-leading industry-focused applied research group in the area of smart system development for agricultural applications.

The successful Postdoc Researcher will help define, manage and implement an applied research project as part of a team of multi-disciplinary researchers with expertise in microsystems technology, wireless sensors, electronics and low-power system hardware and communications software design. The Researcher will help develop prototype and test the next generation edge computing sensing and communication systems, energy efficient data acquisition system deployment in conjunction with research project partners.

Responsibilities

  • To work under the direction of the Principal Investigator/Project Leader to fulfill the deliverables associated with the HALY.ID program of work.
  • To conduct relevant research activities, including planning, organizing, conducting, and communicating research studies within the overall scope of the research project.
  • To develop the specification, design and deployment of resource constrained sensing systems.
  • To undertake tasks requiring technical competence in the field of IoT sensors for agriculture focused on including drone path planning, constrained system image processing and analysis, Quality of detection and communications optimization over low band width communications protocols.
  • To coordinate and perform a variety of independent and team activities involved in the collection, analysis, documentation and interpretation of information/results.
  • To undertake tasks which may include recording results and preparing reports including conclusions and recommendations. Application of qualitative and quantitative research techniques in IoT systems for agricultural applications.
  • To engage in appropriate training and professional development opportunities as required by the Principal Investigator, School or College in order to develop research skills and competencies.
  • To co-supervise postgraduate research students who are studying for a Masters or a PhD and have an agreed role in supporting these students in their day to day research.
  • To carry out administrative work to support the program of research and ensure all project deliverables and milestones are achieved in a timely manner.
  • To provide guidance as required to any support staff and/or research students assisting with the research project, as agreed with the Principal Investigator/Grant holder.
  • To disseminate project outputs, through the interpretation of results and the preparation of manuscripts for publication.
  • To work with industry/research partners (existing and planned) to identify their IoT sensing needs (technologies and applications).
  • To perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.
  • Participate in Education and Public Engagement activities.
  • Ensure all activities are compliant with the Tyndall Quality Management system.
  • Ensure all activities are compliant with the required Health and Safety standards.

Essential Criteria

  • A PhD in Computer Science, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, or equivalent research experience.
  • Appropriate research experience in communications protocols, edge computing, and relevant topics.
  • Hands-on experience with data acquisition system development, resource constrained image analysis, systems integration and test
  • Experience with appropriate lab-equipment, simulation tools and modelling software.
  • A strong publication record.
  • An ability to work independently to a schedule.
  • A demonstrated capability in the delivery of research projects at undergraduate or postgraduate level.
  • Capability of working effectively within a team to achieve results.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • High levels of initiative, project management, self-management, achievement-orientation, and motivation are encouraged.

Desirable Criteria

  • Good analytical skills and computer skills.
  • Evidence of excellent organizational and communication skills.
  • Evidence of excellent time management skills.
  • Experience with IoT sensor systems for Agriculture is an asset.
  • Experience with ROS drone-related software is an asset.
  • High levels of initiative, self-management, achievement-orientation, and motivation are encouraged.

Appointment may be made on the IUA Scale for Post-Doctoral Researchers €38,630-€45,942 pa.  Salary placement on appointment will be in accordance with public sector pay policy.

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Brendan O’Flynn at brendan.oflynn@tyndall.ie and Dimitrios Zormpas at dimitrios.zormpas@tyndall.ie.

Application Instructions

Step 1 -  Click here to download the application form and indicate DZO-01 as the Job Reference

Step 2 - Return the completed application form, together with your CV and motivation letter to careers@tyndall.ie.

Please note that Garda vetting and/or an international police clearance check may form part of the selection process.

The University, at its discretion, may undertake to make an additional appointment(s) from this competition following the conclusion of the process.

At this time, Tyndall National Institute does not require the assistance of recruitment agencies.

Tyndall National Institute at University College, Cork is an Equal Opportunities Employer