PhD Studentship in Nanoelectromechanical Coupled Nonlinear Oscillator Arrays

University of Southampton School of Electronics and Computer Science

United Kingdom

PhD Studetnship - Nanoelectromechanical Coupled Nonlinear Oscillator Arrays for On-chip AI

Agents, Interactions & Complexity

Location:  Highfield Campus
Closing Date:  Friday 03 April 2020
Reference:  1254720FP

Supervisor:                 Yoshi Tsuchiya and Klaus-Peter Zauner

Project description

For future AI hardware, reducing power consumption to implement advanced machine learning is the key issue. While alternative unconventional computing schemes are attracting much attention to implement machine learning in simple and energy-efficient manners from the computer science side, development of novel device platforms suitable to these schemes is essential from the electronic engineering aspect.

  This project will focus on developing a novel nanoelectromechanical coupled nonlinear oscillator array as a potential platform of physical reservoir computing, a promising computing scheme for energy-efficient machine learning. Our research challenges are around:

  1. Design optimization of coupled oscillator arrays to be as friendly as possible with the current nanoscale device fabrication technologies

  2. Development of novel hybrid modelling tools to model the operation of a large area array of coupled oscillators for machine learning capability

  1. Developing a machine learning algorithm suitable for the nanoelectromechanical coupled oscillator platform

The supervision team for the PhD is:

  • Dr Yoshi Tsuchiya, an expert in nanoelectronics and nanosystems

  • Dr Klaus-Peter Zauner, an expert in physical computing and AI

The studentship is funded jointly by the UKRI MINDS CDT and Huawei. Huawei will provide industry expertise to support the research. The student will be able to go on a 3-month internship. 

The UKRI MINDS Centre for Doctoral Training ( is one of 16 PhD training centres in the UK with specific focus on developing the next generation of AI experts. The MINDS CDT has a unique focus on advancing AI techniques in the context of real-world engineered systems with a remit that spans novel hardware for AI, AI and machine learning, pervasive systems and IoT, and human-AI collaboration. We provide enhanced cross-disciplinary training in electronics and AI, entrepreneurship, responsible research and innovation, communication strategies, outreach and impact development as part of an integrated 4-year PhD programme. 

The MINDS CDT is based on a dedicated laboratory on Highfield Campus at the University of Southampton. The lab provides a supportive environment for individual research, ideas sharing and collaboration, and the wider campus provides access to substantial high-performance computing (including dedicated GPU servers), maker and cleanroom facilities. You will take part in our annual, student-designed innovation camps, be able to work with industry and government partners through our internship scheme and be able to take part in exchanges with international university partners.

Funding: full tuition for EU/UK Students plus, for UK and EU students resident in the UK for previous 3 years, an enhanced stipend of £18,285, tax-free per annum for 4 years. years. 

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).

Closing date: applications should be received no later than 3 April 2020 for entry in October 2020. 

How To Apply

Applications should be made online . Please enter Nanoelectromechanical Coupled Nonlinear Oscillator Arrays for On-chip AI under the Topic or Field of Research.

Applications should include

Research Proposal

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts to date

For further information please contact: 

In your application, please refer to