Penn State Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering

We have no specific opening for graduate students. Since our research is inherently interdisciplinary, in general we are looking for motivated students who have an interest and/or skills in:

  • Biomechanics of locomotion
  • Experimental neuroscience, including invertebrate electro- and opto-physiology
  • Control theory and system identification
  • Dynamical systems
  • Biomaterials
  • Bio-inspired engineering and design
  • Biological sensing and sensor design
  • Robotics/Mechatronics
  • Quantitative analysis of animal behavior
  • Computer vision

Post-doc Positions

Highly-motivated scientists and engineers should contact me directly to discuss their interest and funding opportunities. Students are strongly encouraged to apply for individual fellowships. We are particularly interested in students who wish to work at the interface of biology and engineering (e.g. biologists who wish to integrate an engineering framework in their research and engineers who wish to apply their quantitative skills to reverse engineer locomotion control in animals)

Graduate Student Positions

Interested students can apply through my primary department in Mechanical Engineering or the Intercollege Graduate Program in Bioengineering. Engineering, applied math and physics students with an interest in biology and biologists with a quantitative background are encouraged to apply.

Experimental capabilities

  • Locomotion biomechanics station:
    • Virtual reality simulators for aerial and terrestrial locomotion
    • Free locomotion station with high-speed videography
    • Tethering and instrumentation station
    • Behavioral arenas
  • Neural system station:
    • Whole neural circuit imaging station with 2-photon microscopy
    • Single- and multi-cellular electrophysiology station
    • Fly (Drosophila) pushing station for neurogenetics
  • Robot fabrication station:
    • Laser cutter, 3D printers, FEA software
  • Environmental chamber for rearing insects
  • Machining facility
  • Electronics workbench
  • Wet lab facility
  • Shared instrumentation through Penn State Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences
    • e.g. confocal and fluorescence microscopy
  • Shared material characterization instrumentation through Materials Research Institute
  • Shared maker space Maker Commons