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11 PhD/Postdoc Positions In Smart Optics Systems

TU Delft, The Netherlands
Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands

Posted February 21, 2009

The field of smart optics systems is characterized by the use of deformable mirrors, lenses and wavefront sensors and intelligent image processing to enhance the image quality in real-time of scientific observation equipment. The improvement of the resolution of images is crucial in all areas of image analysis, ranging from (biomedical) imaging, astronomy, lithography to optical communication and laser material processing. Sponsored by the Dutch National Science Foundation STW a program with 20 PhD students has been approved in November, 2008. Within this program new microscopic instruments, active mirrors for lithography, integrated image processing and active optics and active laser technology will be developed; program leader is Prof. M. Verhaegen (m.verhaegen@moesp.org).

In this vacancy notice a brief call for 8 PhD and 3 Postdoc positions is made. Project descriptions and contacts for further information are given below. Your application should include a motivation for a specific position. For each position the corresponding contact can provide information on how to apply.


Diffraction limited image resolution is curently not feasible for a large number of high-end optical imaging instruments, like telescopes, long-range surveillance cameras, free-space optical communication systems. The goal of this project is to realize diffraction-limited performance by fully integrating and jointly optimizing current distortion compensation techniques, comprising adaptive optics as well as post-facto reconstruction techniques.


1.    Postdoc on optimization of post-facto reconstruction techniques
This project concerns the development of optimized post-facto reconstruction by exploiting the information of real-time wavefront error measurements.
Contact: Christoph Keller (c.u.keller@uu.nl)

2.    PhD student on optimization and integration of data-driven adaptive control and post-facto reconstruction
This project concerns the further development of data-driven adaptive control by exploiting the information provided by post-facto reconstruction techniques, robust and adaptive tracking of dynamic disturbances.
Contact: Rufus Fraanje (p.r.fraanje@tudelft.nl)


The semiconductor industry continuously strives to reduce feature size of Integrated Circuits (IC). Optical aberrations due to misallignment, vibrations, and heat generation, etc., limit the accuracy in photolithography. A specific key enabling technology to improve the accuracy in photolithography is Adaptive Optics. This project specifically focuses on the development of adaptive optic for image-to-wafer plane conformity in optical lithography systems. The PhD students will work together at the university and the industrial contributor ASML.


3.    PhD student on metrology for adaptive optics
This project concerns the development of fast real time measurement techniques to identify and characterize the shape of the optical element in relation to the wavefront of the projected image. Challenges are: choice of metrology principle, measurement rate, accuracy, resolution, alignment, development of electronics and data processing.
Contact: Rob Munnig Schmidt (r.h.munnigschmidt@tudelft.nl)

4.    PhD student on identification and control for adaptive optics
This project concerns the development of efficient and fast real-time algorithms for (closed-loop) identification and control of adaptive optics systems for lithography. Challenges are adaptation to time-varying dynamics and non-linearities at high control bandwidths in the kHz frequency range.
Contact: Rufus Fraanje (p.r.fraanje@tudelft.nl)


Advanced imaging methods such as confocal microscopy and multi-photon excitation microscopy provide 3-D imaging in (optically thick) specimens. Unfortunately, the use of these techniques is seriously hampered by specimen-induced aberrations that result in reduced depth penetration, loss of spatial resolution, and increased phototoxicity. This project focuses on the development of fast, active compensation methods for specimen-induced wavefront aberrations.


5.    PhD student on adaptive optics in a multiphoton microscope
This project concerns the implementation and validation of an adaptive optics in a multiphoton microscope. Validation will be done with excised tissues, in-vivo imaging and exploring novel imaging modalities.
Contact: Hans Gerritsen (h.c.gerritsen@uu.nl)

6.    PhD student on high-speed adaptive optics system
This project concerns the design and realization of a high-speed aberration sensor, deformable-mirror adaptive optics module and the software for aberration sensing and the deformable mirror control.
Contact: Christoph Keller (c.u.keller@uu.nl)

7.    PhD student on smart predictive algorithms and their convergence behavior
This project concerns the development of smart predictive algorithms that take into account all relevant (dynamic) system properties in the deformable mirror, the nonlinear aberration sensor and disturbances.
Contact: Georg Schitter (g.schitter@tudelft.nl)


Optical microscopy has gone through impressive progress in the past decades and has provided powerful instruments for biomedical research. However, the limited resolution of even the best microscopes available today is impeding precise quantitative studies into the molecular mechanisms responsible for diseases such as cancer, Alzheimerís, and Parkinsonís. The aim of this multidisciplinary project is to improve the performance of confocal microscopy for live cell imaging research by the use of smart optics.


8.    PhD student on smart optics systems for confocal microscopy
This project concerns the design of an integrated optical scheme using smart optics components to compensate for varying aberrations.
Contact: Gleb Vdovin (g.v.vdovine@tudelft.nl)

9.    PhD student on control systems for smart confocal microscopy
This project concerns the design and integration of real-time control system for improved scanning and active compensation for aberrations.
Contact: Georg Schitter (g.schitter@tudelft.nl)

10.    Postdoc on image processing for smart confocal microscopy
This project concerns the development of adaptive deconvolution methods for image enhancement as well as detection and tracking methods for image analysis.
Contact: Erik Meijering (vacancies@bigr.nl)

11.    Postdoc on live cell imaging using smart confocal microscopy
This project concerns the evaluation of the developed smart microscopy imaging system by application to biomedically relevant research questions.
Contact: Adriaan Houtsmuller (a.houtsmuller@erasmusmc.nl)

Modeling MEMS and NEMS, Pelesko
Rufus Fraanje
Instrument Modelling and Control
TNO Science and Industry
Stieltjesweg 1, 2628 CK
Delft, The Netherlands
t: +31 (0)15 269 2459
m: +31 (0)6 439 27 159
f: +31 (0)15 269 2111



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