PhD project in Agent-based Design Methodologies for Biomolecular Engineering

New closing date: 1 July 2006

The project topic is "Agent-based Design Methodologies for Biomolecular Engineering".

Project description:
Advances in nanotechnology and biomolecular engineering have great potential to lead to the development of new materials and new processes, which in turn can lead to a whole generation of new products assembled inexpensively from cheap and abundant raw bio-materials. Computer models and software tools will play a key role in the engineering of such products.

The purposes of this project are to develop modelling and simulation techniques for understanding and designing the bulk behaviour of a large system of interacting agents or particles, and to demonstrate their application in biomolecular chemistry.

The challenge is to develop a conceptual framework that spans the scales between the molecular dynamics and the gross colloidal description of the materials to be developed, and to apply Agent-Based Modelling (ABM) to automate exploration of the design space.

The project will build upon CSIRO's two-layered approach to designing emergent behaviours, and the 3D multi-agent simulation environment they have developed.

The successful candidate will closely work with Prof Anton Middelberg's team in the AIBN to develop knowledge of requirements and constraints in the biomolecular application domain, and will spend part of each year working with CSIRO's Autonomous Systems Laboratory in Sydney.

They will also have access to complex systems sciences and engineering expertise in the ACCS

Scholarship details
The scholarship will be awarded for 3 years with a possible 6 month extension.

The scholarship is valued at $19,231 p.a. tax free. CSIRO is offering a top-up to this scholarship of $7,000 p.a. plus up to $6,000 towards travel to international conferences and laboratories and up to $4,000 p.a. towards project operating costs.

Candidates will ideally commence their studies before 31 March 2006.

While the successful candidate will be enrolled through the University of Queensland (based at the AIBN), it is anticipated they will spend significant time at the CSIRO ICT Centre in Sydney. The CSIRO operating contribution may be used to assist with associated travel and accommodation expenses.

The successful candidate will also take part in various ACCS activities such as their Winter School & Seminar Series.

Selection criteria
Applicants should have First Class Honours or equivalent in a relevant discipline and have a good quantitative background suitable for simulation work. Applicants must be Australian (or New Zealand) residents at the application closing date.

How to apply

Potential applicants should contact Prof Anton Middelberg (61 7 3346 8784) or Dr Geoff James (61 2 9325 3276) to discuss the project further.

The University of Queensland's ARC Centre for Complex Systems (ACCS) , the Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (AIBN), and CSIRO Autonomous Systems Laboratory are jointly offering a PhD scholarship at the University of Queensland to commence in 2006. for details.



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