Advanced 4D printing for robotics, manufacturing, and healthcare

Fully-funded UK-Singapore Joint PhD Scholarship on Microrobotics for a UK/EU student

The Department of Automatic Control and Systems Engineering at the University of Sheffield (UK), Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD, Singapore), and Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE, A*Star, Singapore) jointly invite applications for a 4-year funded PhD Scholarship in advanced manufacturing open to UK and EU applicants only. The programme will start in September 2019.

The prestigious A*STAR-Sheffield scheme gives the PhD student the unique opportunity to carry out part of their studies in Singapore as part of a partnership agreement with the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). The prospective PhD student will start their career in Singapore. After two years, the student will move to UK and continue/complete the work at the University of Sheffield. Upon completion, the PhD degree will be awarded by the University of Sheffield.

Years 1, 2 (Singapore)
The student will conduct research at Singapore University of Technology and Design, jointly co-advised by:

Years 3, 4 (UK)

Project Description

This project aims to develop a 3D and 4D printing techniques that enable seamless, functional, and instantaneous control over the devices for intended applications. By the combination of smart materials, microfluidics, and digital fabrication, we will open up a new frontier for programmable matter for the small scale robotics and medical devices.
Keywords: additive manufacturing, smart materials, microfluidics, optics, microfabrication.

Eligibility and Requirements

Residency restrictions - awards are open to UK and EU applicants only.

Academic requirements: applicants should have, or expect to achieve a first or upper second class UK honours degree (or equivalent qualifications gained outside the UK in an appropriate area of study).

Candidates are expected to have a background in one of the following fields: Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Materials Science, Robotics, MEMS, Control, Electrical Engineering, or a related field.

Applicants with other qualifications or experience should contact the Department’s Research Support Officer,, so that we can check on your eligibility.

Funding Notes

The studentship provides funding for 4 years. While in Singapore, A*Star will provide financial support including living allowance, a one-off “settling-in allowance”, a one-time airfare allowance, consumables and bench fees, cost of medical insurance. While in Sheffield, the Scholarship covers tuition fees and pays a stipend at the UK rate (£15,009 per annum).


Please send your CV to Dr Shuhei Miyashita,, with a cover paragraph stating your interests and suitability for the role. Email title ‘Advanced 4D printing’. Please indicate/confirm within this message, if you meet our minimum English Language requirements, and provide evidence of this:

Closing date

We are open for applications.

Shortlisted candidates will be contacted to submit a formal application with instructions on how to submit this formal application via the University's online application system.

The University of Sheffield is a member of the Russell Group of leading UK research universities. The University is rated 75th in world in the 2019 QS World University Rankings. In the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey 2018, the University was voted top five nationally for providing the best overall student experience, with our Students' Union voted best in the UK for the tenth year in a row.

Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) is the 4th autonomous university in Singapore. SUTD offers an integrated multi-disciplinary curriculum and multi-disciplinary research with a focus on design and key engineering sectors (advanced manufacturing, healthcare, aviation and cities).

Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) is a research institute of the Science and Engineering Research Council (SERC), Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). Established in September 1997, IMRE has been building strong capabilities in materials analysis, characterisation, design & growth, patterning, fabrication, synthesis and integration. IMRE is an institute of talented researchers equipped with state-of-the-art facilities to conduct world-class materials science research to improve lives and capture economic value for Singapore.