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Assistant/Associate Professor Motion Perception & Comfort Automated Driving TU Delft

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  • Assistant/Associate Professor Motion Perception & Comfort Automated Driving TU Delft

    Assistant or Associate Professor in Motion Perception and Comfort in Automated Driving
    Employer Technische Universiteit Delft (TU Delft)
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    Job description

    TU Delft, the Netherlands, invites applications for an Assistant/Associate Professor Position (tenure track) investigating human motion perception and motion comfort to develop new insights and models predicting comfort of automated driving.
    Automated driving holds great promise to provide safe and sustainable transport. Passenger cars will soon achieve safety levels allowing users to take their eyes off the road, freeing up time for work or leisure activities. Surveys indicate that consumers are interested in reading and operating digital devices whilst using automation. These needs must be taken into account for the design of vehicle motion controllers and interiors. A particular concern is ďself-driving car sicknessĒ. Drivers rarely suffer from car sickness, but sickness is reported by two-thirds of passengers during eyes off road conditions. Hence, knowledge and models of motion comfort are urgently needed to achieve high comfort levels in automated driving.
    A range of theories and models associate motion sickness with motion perception and posture maintenance. Due to a multitude of factors existing models fail to predict motion comfort in automated driving. Effects of 3D motion and the modulating role of vision are not sufficiently understood. The relation between motion comfort and posture maintenance sees little empirical support. Current knowledge focusses on severe (pre-)vomiting sickness rather than the targeted high comfort levels.
    The candidate is expected to develop enhanced and new experimental methods, theories and models addressing the knowledge gaps identified above.
    Experimental vehicles and moving base driving simulators will be used to systematically investigate perceived comfort as a function of vehicle motion, vision, non-driving task, and seating. Fundamental experiments will address motion perception and posture maintenance. Together with other researchers full body biomechanical models and motion perception models will be integrated to jointly predict body motion and comfort. Together with other researchers and partners the resulting insights and models will be used to design innovative control algorithms for automated vehicles.
    The candidate will recruit one PhD candidate using University budgets and is expected to recruit further PhDs through externally funded research projects
    We expect you to:
    ∑ Develop, conduct and supervise high-quality academic research;
    ∑ Inspire students through teaching and supervision;
    ∑ Collaborate with specialists in academia and industry in multidisciplinary projects;
    ∑ Transfer theory to innovative technology;
    ∑ Secure external funding for research projects (European funding or national funding or industrial funding);
    ∑ Be an inspiring contribution to our staff.


    Candidates are expected to be, or be on their way to becoming, authorities in their own field of research, and to complement and enrich the existing research programs in the department. For the overall balance in the department, we especially welcome applications from female scientists.
    Applicants should have the following qualifications:
    • PhD degree in Neuroscience, Human Movement Sciences, Mechanical Engineering, or comparable studies and experience.
    • In particular we value experience and interest in: Motion perception (vision, vestibular), Postural stabilization, Biomechanical testing (motion capture, EMG) and modelling, System identification & Frequency domain analysis, Automotive, Comfort & Human factors.  
    • Strong analytical skills and ability/interest to work at the intersection of several research domains;
    • At least one year of research experience after the PhD, and international experience;
    • Excellent track record in scientific research, as evident from papers in international and peer-reviewed journals;

    Conditions of employment
    At the start of the tenure-track you will be appointed as Assistant Professor for the duration of six years. Section leader, department leaders and you will agree upon expected performance and (soft) skills. You will receive formal feedback on performance and skills during annual assessment meetings and the mid-term evaluation. For more information about the tenure track and the personal development programme, please visit Based on performance indicators agreed upon at the start of the appointment, a decision will be made at the end of the fifth year whether to offer you a permanent faculty position. The salary for a Tenure Track (Assistant Professor) position is min. Ä3.637 to max. Ä5.656 per month gross. For exceptionally strong candidates, a shortened tenure track period or Associate Professor position can be considered. For an Associate Professor position different terms of employment apply. Depending on background and experience, the salary can range from min. Ä5.039 to max. Ä6.738 per month gross. TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Childrenís Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. TU Delft sets specific standards for the English competency of the teaching staff. TU Delft offers training to improve English competency. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.


    Delft University of Technology
    Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) is a multifaceted institution offering education and carrying out research in the technical sciences at an internationally recognised level. Education, research and design are strongly oriented towards applicability. TU Delft develops technologies for future generations, focusing on sustainability, safety and economic vitality. At TU Delft you will work in an environment where technical sciences and society converge. TU Delft comprises eight faculties, unique laboratories, research institutes and schools.


    Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering (3mE)
    The 3mE Faculty trains committed engineering students, PhD candidates and post-doctoral researchers in groundbreaking scientific research in the fields of mechanical, maritime and materials engineering. 3mE is the epitome of a dynamic, innovative faculty, with a European scope that contributes demonstrable economic and social benefits.
    The Cognitive Robotics department within the 3mE Faculty aims to develop intelligent robots and vehicles that will advance mobility, productivity and quality of life. Its mission is to bring robotic solutions to human-inhabited environments, focusing on research in the areas of machine perception, motion planning and control, machine learning, automatic control and interaction. The department combines fundamental research with work on physical demonstrators in areas such as self-driving vehicles, collaborative industrial robots, mobile manipulators and haptic interfaces. Collaborations exist with cross-faculty institutes TU Delft Robotics Institute and TU Delft Transport Institute), and international industry and academia. For more information, see Cognitive Robotics (CoR) and Intelligent Vehicles (IV). 

    Additional information

    For more information about this position, please contact dr R. Happee, Associate Professor, e-mail:, tel.: +31 1527883213.
    To apply, please send a detailed CV, motivation letter, a research and teaching statement, electronic copies of your top three publications and contact data of at least three references. All required documents should be combined to a single pdf file. Applications should be submitted by email at the earliest convenience to and When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number 3mE19-31. Selection of candidates started on September 1, 2019.


    1. de Bruijn E, van der Helm FCT, Happee R. (2016). Analysis of isometric cervical strength with a nonlinear musculoskeletal model with 48 degrees of freedom. Multibody System Dynamics 36-4: 339-362.
    2. Forbes PA, Dakin CJ, Geers AM, Vlaar MP, Happee R, Siegmund GP, Schouten AC, Blouin JS. (2014). Electrical Vestibular Stimuli to Enhance Vestibulo-Motor Output and Improve Subject Comfort. PLoS ONE 9(1): e84385. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0084385.
    3. Forbes PA, Dakin CJ, Vardy A, Happee R, Siegmund GP, Schouten AC, Blouin JS. (2013). Frequency response of vestibular reflexes in neck, back and lower limb muscles, Journal of Neurophysiology, 110(8): 1869-1881.
    4. Forbes PA, de Bruijn E, Schouten AC, van der Helm FCT, Happee R. (2013). Dependency of human neck reflex responses on the bandwidth of pseudorandom anterior-posterior torso perturbations. Experimental Brain Research 226(1): 1-14.
    5. Happee R, Bos JE. (2019). Workshop motion comfort of automated driving. August 28, 2019, TU Delft, the Netherlands, with the International Comfort Congress
    6. Happee R, de Bruijn E, Forbes PA, van der Helm FCT. (2017). Dynamic head-neck stabilization and modulation with perturbation bandwidth investigated using a multisegment neuromuscular model. J. Biomechanics 58, 203-211.
    7. Happee R, de Bruijn E, Forbes PA, van Drunen P, van DieŽn JH, van der Helm FCT. (2019). Neck postural stabilization, motion comfort and impact simulation. Chapter 19 in DHM and Posturography.
    8. Irmak T, Pool DM, Bos JE, Happee R. (2019). Validation of existing perception models within the context of motion sickness. Congress on Motion Sickness, Akureyri, Iceland, July 7th Ė 10th 2019.
    9. Meijer R, Broos J, Elrofai H, de Bruijn E, Forbes PA, Happee R. (2013). Modelling of Bracing in a Multi-Body Active Human Model. IRCOBI Conference 2013.
    10. ÷sth J, Eliasson E, Happee R, Brolin K. (2014). A Method to Model Anticipatory Postural Control in Driver Braking Events. Gait & Posture 40 (2014) 664-669.
    11. van DieŽn JH, van Drunen P, Happee R. (2017). Sensory contributions to stabilization of trunk posture in the sagittal plane. Journal of Biomechanics.
    12. van Drunen P, Koumans Y, van der Helm FCT, van DieŽn JH, Happee R. (2015). Modulation of intrinsic and reflexive contributions to low-back stabilization due to vision, task instruction and perturbation bandwidth. Experimental Brain Research 233(3): 735-749.
    13. van Drunen P, Maaswinkel E, van der Helm FCT, van DieŽn JH, Happee R. (2013). Identifying intrinsic and reflexive contributions to low-back stabilization. J Biomechanics 46 (8) 1440-1446.
    14. van Drunen P, van der Helm FCT, van DieŽn JH, Happee R. (2016). Trunk stabilization during sagittal pelvic tilt: From trunk-on-pelvis to trunk-in-space due to vestibular and visual feedback. Journal of Neurophysiology 115(3), 1381-1388.

    Riender Happee
    Associate Professor, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
    Intelligent Vehicles | Cognitive Robotics | Mechanical, Maritime & Materials Engineering (3mE)
    Transport & Planning | Civil Engineering and Geosciences (CEG) | | T +31 15 2783213 | M +31 620493500 | skype: riender.happee
    Assistant or associate professor in motion perception and comfort of automated driving
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