PhD researcher (f/m/d) | Dynamic Locomotion

Young Researchers Stuttgart
Solid State Research & Material Sciences Structural and Cell Biology

Job Code: Stu_06

Job Offer from October 23, 2020

The Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Stuttgart is currently seeking a highly motivated PhD researcher (m/f/d) 

We offer a three year PhD candidate researcher position in the field of legged robotics and biomechanics.

Project goal and details

In the new collaboration project ‘EcoWalk’ we investigate the human gait, specifically the influence of the leg’s musculoskeletal structure on the walking dynamics. At the Dynamic Locomotion Group, we will model the human leg with the help of an instrumented, custom-build, biped robot setup. Scientifically, we focus on fundamental, mechanistic explanations of the human gait and the leg’s actuator and compliant structures. In collaboration with the Applied Mechanics Group at the Mechanical Engineering Department at the Technical University of Munich (Dr. Daniel Renjewski), a bipedal legged system will be developed to demonstrate the identified principles. The close cooperation will include regular research visits to Munich. The research will be published at national and international scientific conferences and high-impact journals. Your activities include mechanical and mechatronic robot design, experimentation, and data analysis, scientific documentation, and preparation of supporting experiments with both numerical simulations and also human subjects.

About us and the position

The Dynamic Locomotion Group is a young research group at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems on the campus Stuttgart in Germany. We offer an excellent research infrastructure, national (i.e. with MPI IS, campus Tübingen) and international interdisciplinary cooperation possibilities also with experts from Biology and Biomechanics, and an international PhD research school (IMPRS-IS).

The salary will be based on previous experience according to TVöD guidelines. The PhD contract will be offered for 3 years. We seek to increase the number of women in areas where they are underrepresented and thus explicitly encourage women to apply. The Max Planck Society is committed to employing more handicapped individuals and especially encourages them to apply.


The ideal candidate will have

  • A background in Mechanical, Mechatronic, or Electrical Engineering, or closely related;
  • A Masters (or equivalent) degree from a recognized university, or near completion;
  • Hands-on experience designing and building mechatronic systems is a strong advantage;
  • Strong interest in scientific work, and focus on bioinspired locomotion in robots and animals;
  • Excellent grades and analytical skills;
  • Very good oral and written English;
  • Knowledge in machine learning, optimization, multi body dynamics, dynamical systems is a plus;
  • Previous publications in international conferences and journals is a plus;
  • Willing to work for short times at the collaboration site in Munich;
  • Outstanding candidates with different backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

To apply

Interested candidates should send the following documents as pdf files (small size preferred, under 5MB) by email quoting “EcoWalk application Stuttgart [your name]” to Alexander Badri-Spröwitz () and Dr. Daniel Renjewski ():

  1. A cover letter explaining your personal motivation, and your fit for this position within the EcoWalk project; between one and two pages (maximum);
  2. CV and publication list;
  3. Transcripts of relevant degrees in English;
  4. Contact information of three references;
  5. If applicable, two selected publications (file or freely accessible online link).

Questions about this position can be sent to Alexander Badri-Spröwitz, . The call opens October 2020. The position will remain open until the ideal candidate is found.

Alexander Badri-Spröwitz
Heisenbergstr. 3
70569 Stuttgart

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