PhD Position in IoT Reconfigurable Networks Combining Optical and Radio Wireless Technologies

Catholic University of Leuven Department of Electrical Engineering

The research group WAVECORE in the Department of Electrical Engineering (ESAT) of KU Leuven focuses on wireless communication fundamentals and systems. Within WAVECORE, the Networked Systems research unit covers research on several fields of wireless networking such as Cell-Free Massive MIMO, Non-terrestrial Networks, Internet of Things, Joint Communication and Sensing, Machine Learning-based Signal Processing as well as Simultaneous Wireless Information and Power Transfer.


The PhD student will contribute to a European-wide project aiming at developing a truly sustainable and highly flexible IoT network based on the combined use of optical and radio frequency (RF) communications. The research focuses on designing a reconfigurable, reliable, and low-power access technology for RF, light, and joint RF-light communications in dense networks. In particular, the project aims at designing and optimizing the physical and the MAC layers in such reconfigurable IoT networks. IoT nodes considered in this project are built with printed electronics technology. Therefore, computational complexity and power consumption of the access technology are of utmost importance. In the first phase, the PhD researcher will work on designing power- and computational-efficient physical and MAC layers for standalone RF and optical communications. In the second phase, the dynamic reconfiguration of optical and RF will be studied to realize a joint optical and RF reliable and power-efficient communication network. The performance of the designed access technology is to be assessed experimentally as part of IoT networks tailored for realistic use cases.


We are looking for highly motivated top-of-the-class enthusiastic Ph.D. candidate who shows a dynamic and proactive attitude towards research and industry and has interest in both hardware and software. The candidate should have excellent skills in wireless and sensor technology and has an affinity or willingness to learn to work in a world-class wireless lab. The candidate:

  • should have a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering, Telecommunication Engineering, or a related degree
  • should be ranked within the top 10% of their class in MSc and BSc, and have exceptional grades
  • should have a solid background in wireless communication, embedded systems and networking
  • should have has strong communication skills and is fluent in English
  • should have strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work in an international team
  • should have a critical mindset and can analyze research results in a comprehensive way
  • being a first author or co-author in internationally peer-reviewed publications is a plus


  • We offer a PhD scholarship up to four years (subject to positive intermediate evaluations). If the applicant is non-EER, also up to 1 year pre-doc will be supported

  • An exciting research environment, working on the intersection between theory and implementation, in a very multi-disciplinary research environment 

  • You will be working on a state-of-the-art topic with state-of-the-art laboratories

  • A PhD title from a highly ranked university (#1 in Europe in terms of scientific innovation) after approximately 4 years of successful research

  • A thorough scientific education, the possibility to become a world-class researcher 

  • A KU Leuven affiliation, one of the largest research universities of Europe 

  • The possibility to participate in international conferences and collaborations


To apply please submit the following in the online portal:
- A CV with BSc and MSc average grade. Please also mention 3 references
- One-page max. motivation letter 
- Complete transcripts of Bachelor and Master Degree (if the MSc degree is not finished yet, please send the most recent transcript)
- (if available) IELTS, TOEFL or similar test proving your proficiency in English.

For more information please contact Dr. Hazem Sallouha, email:

You can apply for this job no later than March 31, 2023 via the
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  • Employment percentage: Voltijds
  • Location: Leuven
  • Apply before: March 31, 2023
  • Tags: Elektrotechniek
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