PhD position in Intelligent AI Drones for Continuous Infrastructure Inspection

Updated: 24 days ago
Deadline: 30 Jun 2021

The PhD is expected to perform high-quality research as a part of the research and innovation H2020 projects “AerialCore” and “Drones4Safety” that are funded by EU H2020. They are innovative drone projects that contribute to the state of the art robotics, AI, embedded system, and electrical engineering technologies to build autonomous drone systems for transport and powerline infrastructure inspection and manipulation.

The PhD research will be focusing on studying and developing an autonomous drone system that utilizes the energized overhead infrastructures to recharge itself while intelligently inspect them. The PhD student will be expected to contribute to the research and development activities that are running at the SDU UAS Centre and be an active member in the research group; Drone Infrastructure Inspection and Interaction (Diii) Group ( ). The student will be mainly supervised by Associate Professor Emad Samuel Malki Ebeid ( ), and working closely with highly skilled researchers and engineers at SDU UAS Centre and the project partners.

The expected drone system will be integrating advanced onboard embedded sensing technologies such as mmWave, LiDARs, and magnetometers for navigation, energy harvesting techniques for autonomous recharging, and high-performance computation units (e.g., MPSoCs) for onboard fault detection, data processing and path planning. The developed drone system is expected to navigate and inspect the energized infrastructures autonomously and continuously. The system will be tested indoors and outdoors at the SDU UAS testing center, Odense.

Profile and requirements

The successful candidates will be expected to have:

  • MSc degree (equivalent to a Danish master's degree) in robotics, drones, control, mechatronics or electronics engineering, or related fields.
  • Practical experience with FPGA/GPU, ROS, sensor fusion, energy harvesting, and AI are mandatory.
  • Excellent programming skills (e.g., Python, C, C++, VHDL, MATLAB).

Additionally, the candidate should have excellent writing skills and be able to work independently.

Research environment

The successful candidate for the position will be affiliated with the University of Southern Denmark, Faculty of Engineering, SDU UAS Centre. University of Southern Denmark’s UAS Center brings together experts in robotics, computer vision, physics, software engineering, mechanical engineering, and cyber-physical systems to focus on research, education, innovation, and collaboration in the UAS domain.

Contact information

Further information is available by contacting Associate Prof. Emad Samuel Malki Ebeid at

If you experience technical problems you must contact


Conditions of employment
Applicants are required to have a master’s degree (equivalent to a Danish master's degree) at the time of enrollment and employment. Employment as a PhD fellow is a 3-year salaried position (start salary amounts to approx. 3.378,- EURO per month incl. supplements).

Employment of a PhD fellow can only happen after the Head of the PhD School has approved the candidate for admission to the PhD school. Employment and enrollment will cease without further notice at the end of the period.

A PhD fellow is not allowed to have any kind of sideline employment , while enrolled as PhD fellow at the faculty.

Employment is governed by the Protocol on PhD Research Fellows signed by the Danish Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. Please check links for more information on salary and taxation .

The successful candidate will be enrolled at SDU in accordance with Faculty regulations and the Danish Ministerial Order on the PhD Programme at the Universities (PhD order), read more here . 

The assessment process
Read about the Assessment and selection process . Shortlisting may be used. 

Application procedure
The Faculty expects applicants to read the Faculty information for prospective PhD students and the SDU information on How to apply before applying.

The application deadline is 30. June 2021.

The application must be in English and must include the following - the required forms must be found at the Faculty website :

  • Completed TEK PhD application form for 5+3 applicants. Find the form at the Faculty website .
  • Motivation letter stating your specific interest, motivation and qualifications for the project in question (max. 2 pages). Upload in the field called “Project description”. 
  • Detailed Curriculum Vitae, describing research, publication, previous employment, teaching experience, computational skills and including personal contact information.
  • Verified copies of the official bachelor diploma and master's diploma and transcripts of exams, both original and translated into English.
  • Completed TEK PhD form for calculation grade point average. Find the form at the Faculty website . Upload in one of the fields called “Publication”. 
  • An official document describing the grading scheme of the awarding universities (if not Danish). Upload in one of the fields called “Publication”. 
  • An official and verified written assessment of the thesis or dissertation project from the grade giving institution, if the thesis/examination project is evaluated by approved/passed. The statement must clearly state that the candidate has been among the top 30 pct. in the graduation class for the study programme.
  • List of publications and maximum 2 examples of relevant publications, in case you have any publications. Please attach one pdf-file for each publication.
  • Reference letters may also be included. You're welcome to use the form for reference letter at the Faculty website.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

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