PhD scholarship in Convex Array Super Resolution Ultrasound Imaging

Friday 02 Jul 21

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A 3-year PhD scholarship is available at the Center for Fast Ultrasound Imaging (CFU), Department of Health Technology (DTU Health Tech) from September 2021 sponsored by the prestigious European Research Council (ERC) and the Department of Health Technology at DTU. It is conducted in collaboration between CFU and the MEMS group at DTU Health Tech, the University of Copenhagen, and the Copenhagen University Hospital (Rigshospitalet) in the ERC Synergy Grant “3-D Super resolution Ultrasound Real time imaging of Erythrocytes - SURE”.

The SURE project develops and researches a new super resolution ultrasound imaging method capable of resolving 3-D capillary flow in the human body. The approach tracks the motion of the individual red blood cells (erythrocytes) in a three-dimensional volume for a full visualization of anatomy, flow, and perfusion. The approach can potentially yield a paradigm shift in the scientific study, diagnoses, and treatment of cancer, diabetes, and vascular diseases using ultrasound, as it enables the possibility of volumetrically visualizing capillary perfusion in real-time at frame rates above 20 Hz without injection of contrast agents. This can also result in much more detailed image than is currently possible with ultrasound.

Responsibilities and qualifications
This PhD project first develops SURE imaging for convex arrays for imaging the liver and kindey. This is applied for studying flow in the kidneys and cancer in the liver. The second part of the project adapts row-column imaging through lenses for abdominal SURE imaging. The project includes performing a range of phantom and animal experiments to develop and refine the SURE algorithms along with translation to clinical studies.

The research is conducted in a truly multi-disciplinary environment consisting of the four academic partners specializing in advanced ultrasound imaging, silicon based probes, animal experiments, and clinical investigations, and the main purpose is to translate the SURE method from a research idea to the clinic.

The first part of the project develops synthetic aperture acquisition schemes for use with a convex array probe on a Verasonics research scanner. The acquired image data is processed with CFU's SURE pipeline for revealing the micro-vasculature of the kidney and liver. The approach is translated to clinical studies to study kidney flow on both volunteers and diabetic patients and is later used for studying liver cancer.

The second stage uses row-column arrays with a lens to translate the 2-D images to 3-D volumes for SURE using arrays fabricated as capacitive micro-machined ultrasound transducers (CMUT). The imaging is implemented on our research scanners for investigations in a laboratory environment.  They will finally be clinically evaluated in human trials conducted together with the Department of Radiology at Rigshospitalet to reveal efficacy.

You must have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree. Experience with digital signal processing is desirable. Similarly, knowledge of medical imaging and acoustics will also be beneficial.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.


Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information
Further information is available at www.cfu.dtu.dk or from Professor Jørgen Arendt Jensen, tel: +45 4525 3924, e-mail: jaje@dtu.dk.

You can read more about DTU Health Tech on www.healthtech.dtu.dk and about CFU at www.cfu.dtu.dk/  

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark

Application procedure
our complete online application must be submitted no later than 8 August 2021 (Danish time)Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)

You may apply prior to ob­tai­ning your master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU Health Tech engages in research, education, and innovation base on technical and natural science for the healthcare sector. The Healthcare sector is a globally expanding market with demands for the most advanced technological solutions. DTU Health Tech creates the foundation for companies to develop new and innovative services and products which benefit people and create value for society. DTU Health Techs expertise spans from imaging and biosensor techniques, across digital health and biological modelling, to biopharma technologies. The department has a scientific staff of about 210 persons, 130 PhD students and a technical/administrative support staff of about 160 persons, of which a large majority contributes to our research infrastructure and related commercial activities.

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DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 12,900 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we collaborate with the best universities around the world.