Two opportunities exist for UQ PhD candidates. Successful applicants will undertake a three month placement at Boeing during Research Quarter 4 (1 Oct - 31 Dec) 2018.

Why should PhD candidates do placements?

UQ through its UQ Graduate School is providing opportunities for current PhD students to develop their transferable and professional skills through HDR industry placements.  Transferable skills are highly valued by employers as they can be applied in many different ways across numerous situations. They are not discipline specific nor are they specific to any one profession. They include skills in communication, problem solving and teamwork. Being able to identify and develop transferable skills is one of the most important steps in preparing for a successful career. On the other hand, professional skills, depending on the chosen career path, include skills such as those required by professional researchers, teaching skills needed in academia, or skills that support innovation as an entrepreneur. Building transferable and professional skills during the UQ research degree will ensure graduates are well-equipped for whichever pathway they choose.

UQ is encouraging partnerships with industry whereby HDR students take a 3 month placement that is full-time and un-paid, to apply their discipline and technical skills to projects established by an industry partner.

What other factors should be considered?

You should be up to date on your milestones, have passed confirmation, be ready to take on a placement, and have your Principal Advisor's approval. An industry placement is considered part of your candidature, so you can continue to receive your scholarship/living allowance (where applicable) during your placement. Successful completion of the placement will also appear on your academic transcript, and by successfully completing a placement that has been facilitated and approved by the Graduate School, you will obtain 15 points towards the required totals as part of eligibility for the Career Development Scholarship Extension, should you wish to apply at a later date. Candidates who have successfully undertaken a placement may also be eligible to apply for a milestone extension.

What are the benefits of undertaking a placement with Boeing?

These placement projects are situated within Boeing Research & Technology (BR&T), Boeing’s advanced research and development unit. The unit is positioned to support Boeing's business in Australia by providing a focal point for collaboration with research and development organisations including universities, private sector providers, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, and the Defence Science and Technology Organisation. BR&T has two sites in Brisbane and five research program categories. See https://www.boeing.com.au/products-services/research-technology.page

BR&T is providing opportunities for PhD candidates to work within the organisation for 3 months full-time on two dedicated projects under BR&T’s supervision at their Brisbane sites: UQ campus and the Brisbane airport.

This experience will:

  • build candidates' transferable and technical skills;
  • allow them to apply their current discipline knowledge and skills to develop Boeing’s ideas and plans in identified areas;
  • expose candidates to working in a large multinational organisation;
  • allow candidates to build networks;
  • provide opportunities to gain new knowledge and skills that make them more job-ready; and
  • provide opportunities to present to BR&T and wider parts of Boeing such as Boeing Defence that may lead to job opportunities with Boeing.  

What is the application process?

By close of business on Sunday 22 July, you will need to follow the steps below and submit the required documents via the Apply now button.

  1. Identify which of the two projects you wish to apply for. Details are below.
  2. Prepare an up-to-date CV.
  3. Discuss this placement with your Principal Advisor and gain approval to undertake the placement.
  4. Prepare cover letter (no more than two pages) providing details of your:
  • discipline (technical) strengths relevant to your chosen project;
  • personal (transferable) skills that will add value to the project; and
  • desired outcomes from this industry placement including, for example, new knowledge and skills (e.g. technical, transferable, professional), improved industry awareness, networking, employment opportunities.

Apply now

Watch this space as more projects are coming soon.

Project 1 - Business Strategy for Boeing Research & Technology Business Centre

BR&T has two sites in Brisbane and five research program categories, each containing a few subcategories. The business strategy for the Boeing Research & Technology Business Centre is being re-worked to take into account Boeing business unit stakeholders across the globe, including universities, government and grant partners. Input is sought from a student to help craft the strategy and develop visualisation tools to articulate it. The business strategy in particular is targeted at internal customers and stakeholders with Boeing, with students providing an independent outsider perspective on the current drafting and development of the strategy, and ideas around seeking input to this drafting, initial feedback, improvement and how best to promote and embed the final strategy. The project might involve a single PhD student over 3 months, or two working together; or one student working for 3 months full-time, with a second student taking over the project from months 4-6 full time. Students will work closely with Boeing staff, seeking input, feedback and making presentations and reports around their progress.

Boeing Supervisor: Dr Jason Armstrong

Project 2 - Technology Marketing for the Boeing Research & Technology Business Centre

BR&T has two sites in Brisbane and five research program categories, each containing a few subcategories. From early on in a research program the idea must be ‘sold’ to acquire funding and then ‘kept sold’ through a concise representation of the technology and branding. Assistance and input is sought from a student to brainstorm marketing and branding options for particular technologies and visualisation tools to articulate it. As with Project 1, the key audiences for these ideas, initiatives and new tools around Project’s 2 improved marketing, and enhanced branding of products or suites of products, will be Boeing internal customers and stakeholders. The project might involve a single PhD student over 3 months full-time, or two PhD students working together; or one student working for 3 months full-time, with a second student taking over the project from months 4-6 full-time. Students will work closely with Boeing staff, seeking input, feedback and making presentations and reports around their progress. 

Boeing Supervisor: Dr Jason Armstrong

Project 3 - Advanced Haptics Interfaces for Virtual Reality Flight Simulation

Boeing Research & Technology is developing Virtual Reality technologies in the areas of commercial aviation and astronaut training. Various advanced haptic devices are being prototyped to explore augmented virtuality options to enhance the training. The work has already commenced and the eligible PhD candidate would be expected to take some existing mechanical, electrical and software systems and continue development, integration and research in this area.

The project will expose the student to the commercial R&D environment in a leading aerospace company. They will interact with Boeing researchers and engineers and contribute to larger projects in a meaningful way. Advanced haptics will further a large R&D effort in next-generation simulation systems for Boeing, and have significant impact on US based business units.

The student will complete the integration of one or more haptic systems into a virtual environment developed by BR&T. They will provide a hand-over of their technology and findings in the form of a demonstration, code-walkthrough, and/or appropriate documentation.

Boeing Supervisor: Leighton Carr

Project 4 - Low Cost Motion Capture for Mixed Reality Design Validation

Boeing Research & Technology is developing a low cost motion capture system that blends with inverse-kinematic animation to enable full body presence in virtual environments. This will be used for ergonomic and human factors design reviews. The work has already commenced and the eligible PhD candidate Student would be expected to take the existing tracking system and continue software development and human factors design and research in this area.

The project will expose the student to the commercial R&D environment in a leading aerospace company. They will interact with Boeing researchers and engineers and contribute to larger projects in a meaningful way. Low cost motion capture will further a large R&D effort in next-generation virtual reality and ergonomic evaluation systems for Boeing, and have significant impact on US based business units.

The student will continue the development of a low-cost motion capture and inverse kinematics system to allow users to experience full-body presence in virtual environments without the need for wearing a full motion capture suit. Students will demonstrate one or more advances in this R&D area in the form of improvements to motion capture quality, accuracy or completeness.

Boeing Supervisor: Leighton Carr