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Postdoctoral Researcher Design and Implementation of Optical Microphone towards integrated Photo-Acoustic Imaging
Employer: imec
Location: Leuven, Belgium
Employment Start Date: As soon as possible

Organization Description:

Imec is the world-leading research and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital technologies. The combination of our widely acclaimed leadership in microchip technology and profound software and ICT expertise is what makes us unique. By leveraging our world-class infrastructure and local and global ecosystem of partners across a multitude of industries, we create groundbreaking innovation in application domains such as healthcare, smart cities and mobility, logistics and manufacturing, and energy. As a trusted partner for companies, start-ups and universities we bring together close to 3,500 brilliant minds from over 70 nationalities. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium and also has distributed R&D groups at a number of Flemish universities, in the Netherlands, Taiwan, USA, China, and offices in India and Japan. All of these particular traits make imec to be a top-class employer. To strengthen this position as a leading player in our field, we are looking for those passionate talents that make the difference! We offer a challenging position for two years in an advanced high-tech environment and in an international, interdisciplinary team. Our flexible, progressive and informal working environment offers you a range of possibilities to take initiative and show responsibility. This is your opportunity to contribute to the technology that will determine the society of tomorrow. imec supports and guides you in this process; not only with words but with concrete actions. Through, 'our corporate university', we offer various training possibilities. Your valuable contribution and that of your colleagues make imec a top player in its field. Your energy and commitment are therefore appreciated by means of an attractive and competitive salary.

Job Description:

Within imec’s Life Science and Imaging technologies department, our research activities focus on the development of novel tools for health care applications. Current projects vary from lab-on-a-chip systems and PCR devices to neuroprobes, photonic and acoustic sensing devices. Such technologies require a multidisciplinary approach within a team that has expertise in engineering and biology. Especially for our work in new devices for point of care diagnostics, we are looking for an enthusiastic researcher eager to shape tomorrow’s health care technologies. We aim at research at the highest international level and with relevance for the biomedical and pharmaceutical industry. The framework of this research is to develop an integrated photo-acoustic imaging system. Photoacoustic imaging is a biomedical imaging modality based on the photoacoustic effect. Ionizing laser pulses are delivered into biological tissues. Part of the energy is absorbed and converted into heat, leading to transient thermoelastic expansion and thus ultrasonic emission. The generated ultrasonic waves are detected by ultrasound transducers and then analyzed to produce images. To improve the image quality and the form factor of the system, ultra-sensitive sensors and large array of small ultrasound transducers are required. The goal of this postdoc research is to improve the performance of the ultrasound sensor by designing and implementing new optical ultrasound microphones. Optical sensors already demonstrate exquisite performances in terms of sensitivity, resolution and bio-compatibility. Coupling the photonic and MEMS capabilities of imec, the aim is to build an ultra-sensitive acoustic sensor integrated in a chip. As a designer of novel multi-physics devices and systems, you will collaborate closely with the biomedical, process technology, and characterization teams. This interaction will enable the natural, but challenging, evolution of the currently developed MEMS technologies and devices towards their application in biomedical domain. Materials selection, technology parameter definition, modeling of novel physical phenomena as well as technological variability will be key for this successful transition. Your primary tasks and responsibilities will include: - Create and implement novel designs of optical microphone in existing technologies and technologies under development; - Perform the characterization of the designed devices; - Contribute to improve the supporting electronics of the microphone (ASIC drive and read-out); - Maintain a high standard of literature knowledge to support the design activities; - Work closely with an interdisciplinary team of engineers and biologists. We offer leading design and modeling background and mentoring and access to state-of-the art manufacturing capabilities.


You have a PhD degree in Physics, Mechanics, Photonics or Electrical Engineering. You have good knowledge and interest in multi-physic, acoustic and photonics modeling, design techniques and design environment. You have proven experience in conceptual system design and system testing is an asset. You are able to quickly write code or routines using Matlab or Python. Given the international character of imec, a good knowledge of English is mandatory. This postdoctoral position is funded by imec through KU Leuven. Because of the specific financing statute which targets international mobility for postdocs, only candidates who did not stay or work/study in Belgium for more than 24 months in the past 3 years can be considered for the position (short stays such as holiday, participation in conferences, etc. are not taken into account).

Job Application:

Date Posted: June 29, 2017