RESEARCH FIELDEngineering › Biomedical engineering
RESEARCHER PROFILEFirst Stage Researcher (R1)
APPLICATION DEADLINE18/05/2020 12:00 - Europe/Brussels
LOCATIONFrance › Sant-Etienne
Italy › Rome
TYPE OF CONTRACTTemporary
HOURS PER WEEK40
OFFER STARTING DATE15/06/2020
EU RESEARCH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMMEH2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions
MARIE CURIE GRANT AGREEMENT NUMBER859836
Early Stage Researcher (ESR) PhD position in biomechanics within the framework of the project MeDiTATe (The Medical Digital Twin for Aneurysm prevention and Treatment) funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Innovative Training Networks (ITN) with Grant Agreement No. 859836.
MeDiTATe is a European Industrial Doctorate (EID). The whole project aims to develop state-of-the-art image-based medical Digital Twins of cardiovascular districts for patient-specific prevention and treatment of aneurysms.
The growth of aortic aneurysms is associated with several mechano-chemo-biological interactions leading to modifications of the tissue structure including the fragmentation of elastin and changes in the amount and organization of collagen. So far, these mechanisms have been considered in a constitutive model based on the constrained mixture approach, where each constituent has an elastic constitutive response governed by an anisotropic strain energy function and an inelastic constitutive response governed first by a scalar [1–d]-type damage formulation and second by a permanent deformation gradient related to the growth. The model has been implemented as a user material in the Abaqus software. In this project, the ESR will apply the model to simulate the growth of ATAA (ascending thoracic aorta aneurysm) in patients for whom we have reconstructed the aortic geometry for several years (ongoing longitudinal study at the University Hospital of Saint-Etienne). During one month secondment at FTGM the researcher will gain insights on experimental tests concerning the mechanical characterization of the specimen. During the period at Rina Consulting, the ESR will deepen his/her knowledge on computational fluid dynamics and RBF morphing approaches and will work on automating the numerical processes through scripts aimed at combining commercial and/or open-source solvers. The numerical processes will be automated through scripts and both commercial and open-source solvers will be considered. After a preliminary assessment, the Python programming language for designing the scripts driving computational processes, the ABAQUS and Code Aster codes to run the structural calculations, and ANSYS Fluent and SimVascular software to performed CFD analyses have been identified as possible candidates.
All this experience will be used to calibrate the finite-element model on a cohort of 20+ patients to better understand how aneurysms grow and how the damage localizes in the tissue. Given the Digital Twin, the final goal will be to simulate numerically the scenario of growth and possible rupture for any patient’s aneurysm, just from the 4D MRI data, thus aiding the surgeon to take important decision such as surgical repair.
The Candidate will be expected to achieve the following results:
- Calibrate model for the growth of ATAA;
- The automated computational procedure, as part of the Digital Twin;
- Results/conclusions from the studied cases.
The selected candidate will receive a salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for ESR. The gross salary includes a living allowance (€3,270 per month, subject to MSCA country correction coefficient, i.e. 115.7% for France and 104.4 % for Italy), a mobility allowance (€600 per month), and a family allowance (€500 per month, if the researcher has family by the date of recruitment, regardless of whether the family will move with the researcher or not). The guaranteed funding is for 36 months (i.e. EC funding).
Applicants can be of any nationality. They need to fully respect both eligibility criteria (to be demonstrated in the Europass CV): (a) Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs) must, at the date of recruitment by the beneficiary, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. (b) Conditions of international mobility of researchers: Researchers are required to undertake trans-national mobility (i.e. move from one country to another) when taking up the appointment. At the time of selection by the host organization, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in France for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to their recruitment. Short stays, such as holidays, are not taken into account.
Send CV, cover letter, BSc and MSc degrees, and letter of recommendation to all the following recipients:
The ESR will be enrolled in the PhD programme of University of Lyon at Mines Saint-Etienne, France. The PhD thesis will take place at two different places: Mines Saint-Etienne (France) in the CIS department, which conducts major international research projects in the field of soft tissue biomechanics, in particular aortic aneurysms. The ESR will collaborate with other researchers involved in ERC projects; RINA Consulting (Italy – Rome), where the researcher will be trained on CFD modelling and mesh morphing and will work on numerical processes automatization. A one-month secondment in the Fondazione Toscana G. Monasterio (Italy) is foreseen.
Web site for additional job details
REQUIRED EDUCATION LEVELEngineering: Master Degree or equivalent
REQUIRED LANGUAGESENGLISH: Excellent
Candidates with strong skills in mechanics (modelling) and biomechanics are expected. Motivation and interest in bioengineering applications are recommended.
EURAXESS offer ID: 500213
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