PhD Design and realization of a peristaltic pump using smart materials Eindhoven University of Technology, Department of Mechanical Engineering Netherlands

PhD Design and realization of a peristaltic pump using smart materials (V35.2912)


The Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) has the following vacancy PhD student "Design and realization of a peristaltic pump using smart materials" (V35.2912) in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Date off
Reference number

Job description



With the rise of 3D-printing of hybrid, functional materials, many exiting options are emerging to develop new engineering concepts. One of them is found in the area of soft robotics, where the integrated realization of sensing, actuation and power-source may lead to a whole new range of products, such as bio-inspired muscle-fibers. A challenging application is peristaltic pump application using a flexible wall with integrated sensing and actuation (using a distributed network).In such a pump, the medium is pushed forward through a sequence of contraction movements (for example in intestines). The major advantage of a peristaltic pump is the lack of internal components like valves, drive shafts and seals. Furthermore, they are scalable to small scales, which is impossible for rotating or displacement pumps. Small scale peristaltic pumps may not only lead to biomedical and chemical applications, but may also give new possibilities for hydraulic and pneumatic applications on micro-scale.Aim of the PhD project

This project concerns the study of solid-fluid interaction on a flexible peristaltic pump surface using a pump wall based on an integrated (sensing and actuation) meta-material produced through 3D-prinitng. The envisioned result is a proof-of-principle realization of a peristaltic pump on lab-scale (~0.1m pipe-length) with intended use in a chemically challenging environment (for example for pumping formic acid).The candidate will study the possibilities of creating a smart pump wall (for example using dielectric elastomers). Furthermore, the optimization of the wall movement and its realization though distributed control will be investigated. The realization and experimentation of test pumps play a key role in this project.


Job requirements


Qualification of applicant

Talented, enthusiastic candidates with excellent analytical and communication skills holding a university degree (MSc) in Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Materials Science or Applied Mathematics are encouraged to apply. A strong interest in engineering design is required. Experience in materials printing, modelling of fluid-structure interaction and/or distributed control are of benefit.


Conditions of employment


We offer:

  • A challenging job at a dynamic and ambitious University and in an enthusiastic team.

  • An appointment (1 fte) as a PhD-student for four years, starting date: as soon as possible.

  • Gross monthly salaries are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement of the Dutch Universities (CAO NU), increasing from € 2222 per month initially, 

  • to € 2840 in the fourth year.

  • An attractive package of fringe benefits, including excellent work facilities, end of the year allowance and sport facilities.


Information and application


More information

More information about this PhD position can be obtained from Dr.Ir. H.C. de Lange (

Application documents (in PDF format) must contain: letter of motivation, detailed curriculum vitae including photograph, transcripts of BSc and MSc degrees, and contact information of two potential referees.

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Engineeroxy


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