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Heart failure remains one of the most common, costly, disabling, and deadly medical conditions worldwide. Developing effective treatments for patients with heart failure and preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) or mildly reduced ejection fraction (HFmrEF) remains a challenging endeavor in cardiology.
The goal of this PhD project is to investigate complex cardiovascular system dynamics in both healthy and heterogeneous HFpEF and HFmrEF populations through mathematical models of the human heart and circulation. The identification and characterization of subject-specific hemodynamic profiles, and its mechanistic response to hemodynamic shunting interventions will help us develop and personalize novel treatment strategies directed towards improved quality of life for these patients and a potential long-term regression of disease state.
This project will run in close collaboration with both an industrial and clinical partner who will provide access to clinical hemodynamic and imaging data required to calibrate and validate the computational models to be developed within this project. As the successful candidate for this position, you will be directly involved in mathematical modeling and software development, processing and analyzing data, reviewing scientific literature, you will actively participate in (bi)weekly lab meetings, write scientific articles and give presentations at national and international conferences. Besides fundamental and translational research you will also take part in teaching and supervision activities within the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of Delft University of Technology.
The PhD candidate will be supervised by dr. ir. M. Peirlinck at the department of Biomechanical Engineering, Delft University of Technology. His research group integrates multimodal experimental data, physics-based modeling and machine learning techniques to understand, explore, and predict the multiscale behavior of the human heart and cardiovascular system. More information on the team and research can be found on https://peirlincklab.com.
Keywords: cardiovascular system dynamics, physics-based and data-driven mathematical modeling, lumped parameter networks, heart failure
You are a highly motivated, independent, and innovative individual who thrives on technological advancements and works collaboratively with a team. You are able to work in the multidisciplinary and translational field of technological innovation and medicine, and like complex problems. You have excellent English language skills*, communicative and organization competences, and a demonstrable interest in computational cardiology, in particular cardiovascular system dynamics. A MSc-degree in mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering, (medical) physics, biomedical engineering, (applied) mathematics, computer science, aerospace engineering or other related fields is a requirement. Similarly, affinity with cardiovascular (patho)physiology, computational modeling of biological systems, biophysical data acquisition and analysis, and strong and proven computer programming skills (C++, Fortran, Python, or equivalent) are required. Additional experience with system identification, machine learning, Bayesian inference, and other data-driven modeling techniques is highly appreciated.
Please highlight your specific skills and relevant prior experiences for this position explicitly in your motivation letter. Motivation letters that do not address any of these requirements will not be considered.
*Doing a PhD at TU Delft requires excellent English proficiency to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details, please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements.
Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.
Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2.770 per month in the first year to € 3.539 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.
The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.
For international applicants, TU Delft has the Coming to Delft Service. This service provides information for new international employees to help you prepare the relocation and to settle in the Netherlands. The Coming to Delft Service offers a Dual Career Programme for partners and they organise events to expand your (social) network.
Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.
At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.
Challenge. Change. Impact!
From chip to ship. From machine to human being. From idea to solution. Driven by a deep-rooted desire to understand our environment and discover its underlying mechanisms, research and education at the 3mE faculty focusses on fundamental understanding, design, production including application and product improvement, materials, processes and (mechanical) systems.
3mE is a dynamic and innovative faculty with high-tech lab facilities and international reach. It’s a large faculty but also versatile, so we can often make unique connections by combining different disciplines. This is reflected in 3mE’s outstanding, state-of-the-art education, which trains students to become responsible and socially engaged engineers and scientists. We translate our knowledge and insights into solutions to societal issues, contributing to a sustainable society and to the development of prosperity and well-being. That is what unites us in pioneering research, inspiring education and (inter)national cooperation.
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