Research Associate in Masticatory Biomechanics

King's College London

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Job id: 073705. Salary: £42,405 – £49,785 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance.

Posted: 29 August 2023. Closing date: 10 September 2023.

Business unit: Natural, Mathematical & Engineering Sci. Department: Engineering.

Contact details:Michael Berthaume. [email protected]

Location: Strand Campus. Category: Research.

Job description

The Department of Engineering at King’s College London has a full-time postdoctoral research position available to start as soon as possible. The postdoctoral researcher will be working on an EPSRC-funded project investigating the biomechanics of mastication and food item breakdown in malnourished individuals and individuals with eating disorders. Working with a team of psychologists, physiotherapists, and AI specialists, and working with end-users, you will help design and manufacture a device and system to aid malnourished individuals’ build-up their chewing muscles, enabling them to chew and process foods more efficiently during their road to recovery. As food is central to traditions and cultural identity (e.g., the Christmas feast), our hope is this device and system will enable users to take part in these traditions and identities more fully.

You should demonstrate competency in one or more of the following skillsets:

  • Mechanical property testing
  • Wet sieving
  • Human experimentation
  • Biomechanical analyses using motion capture, electromyography (EMG), and/or ultrasound
  • Computer coding (for AI)

Candidates with a wide range of backgrounds/experience including fields such as mechanical engineering, materials science, biomechanics, bioengineering, biomedical engineering, and biological anthropology, are encouraged to apply.

This post will be offered on a fixed-term contract for one year or until 31st January 2025, whichever is sooner.

This is a full-time post – 100% full time equivalent.

Key responsibilities

  • Carrying out human chewing experiments.
  • Quantifying masticatory biomechanical parameters via motion capture, electromyography, measuring average particle size.
  • Co-design of a rehabilitation system to strengthen chewing muscles.
  • Working with the University of Kent on the creation of an AI algorithm for measuring average particle size.

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

Skills, knowledge, and experience

Candidates should demonstrate competency in one or more of the following skillsets:

  • Mechanical property testing
  • Wet sieving
  • Human experimentation
  • Biomechanical analyses using motion capture, electromyography (EMG), and/or ultrasound
  • Computer coding (for AI)

Essential criteria

  • PhD in biomechanics or related field
  • Experience in human biomechanics
  • Ability to write publishable journal papers
  • Desirable criteria

  • Experience in human experimentation
  • A publication record
  • * Please note that this is a PhD level role but candidates who have submitted their thesis and are awaiting award of their PhDs will be considered. In these circumstances the appointment will be made at Grade 5, spine point 30 with the title of Research Assistant. Upon confirmation of the award of the PhD, the job title will become Research Associate and the salary will increase to Grade 6.

    This post is subject to Disclosure and Barring Service clearance.

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