Wearable technology in the workplace to enable human-robot interaction PhD

Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering
Entry requirements:
3 years
6 years
Reference number:
Start date:
01 October 2018
UK/EU fees:
International fees:
Application deadline:
09 March 2018



in the UK for research quality

REF 2014


in the UK for Mechanical Engineering

The Complete University Guide 2018


of 2 Queen's Anniversary Prizes


Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014) and an outstanding 66% of the work of Loughborough’s academic staff who were eligible to be submitted to the REF was judged as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, compared to a national average figure of 43%.

In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career. 

Project detail

Robots are entering more and more in the workplace. What was before confined to highly automated production lines and isolated production cells in large companies, now is moving into SMEs with robots working side by side with humans. One major problem is a reciprocal understanding during work: while humans know and understand other humans, they usually have no clue about the robots; conversely, the robots have difficulty in understanding what their human partners do and feel. Appropriate feedback cues could provide means of understanding each other’s performance and intention during shared tasks, which is critical in human-human collaboration and even more so in human-robot collaboration.

The objective of this project is the development of a wearable technology for human workers to help the robots interpret and therefore interact with them in a personalised way. This wearable technology will also be used to inform the human about the robot intentions and status through appropriate feedback. Moreover, this wearable tech could also have the function of monitoring the occupational health and safety of the workers, allowing potential problems to be identified and dealt with as early as possible.

Based on the identified requirements, the PhD will design, prototype and evaluate the novel wearable tech and develop data analytics/machine learning approaches to enhance the co-working scenario. They will interact with industry partners to understand the workplace constraints and environment including complying with relevant standards.
The PhD will be working in research labs and will be able to access to equipment resources as appropriate.


Primary supervisor: Dr. Yee Mey Goh

Secondary supervisor: Prof. Massimiliano Zecca

Find out more

For further project details email Dr. Yee Mey Goh or register your interest and ask us a question.

To find out more about the School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, please visit our website.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in robotics, mechatronics, biomedical engineering, or a related subject.

A relevant Master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: computer science, human-robot interaction, robotics, AI and machine learning.

All students must also meet the minimum English Language requirements.

Fees and funding


Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. University fees and charges can be paid in advance and there are several methods of payment, including online payments and payment by instalment. Special arrangements are made for payments by part-time students.

This is an open call for candidates who are sponsored or who have their own funding. If you do not have funding, you may still apply, however Institutional funding is not guaranteed. Outstanding candidates (UK/EU/International) without funding will be considered for funding opportunities which may become available in the School.

How to apply

All applications should be made online. Under programme name select Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering. Please quote reference number: MGUF2018