Traversability for robust 3D navigation-PhD opening

Position description

Do you want to work at one of the world’s leading research organisations, live in a city with extremely high standard of living, enjoy pristine beaches and sun all year round, and still carry out ground breaking Robotics research to solve real-world challenges? If so, this position is for you.

The Robotics and Autonomous Systems Group at CSIRO’s Data61 have been developing the state of the art LiDAR-based 3D SLAM systems that can be used for driverless navigation and mapping. This can be done in industrial, urban, natural as well as GPS-denied subterranean environments.

A PhD position is available as a part of a research collaboration between the Robotics and Autonomous Systems group at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Organization (CSIRO) and at either of two high-prestige Queensland Universities, the University of Queensland (UQ) or the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), in Brisbane, Australia. You will receive a scholarship of $27,000 per year for 3.5 years. Top-up of $10,000 per year will be awarded to outstanding students.

Topic: Traversability for robust 3D navigation

Traversability analysis is a key enabling component of 3D navigation for autonomous robots including, driverless vehicles. The goal is to estimate the cost of traversing on a given environment based on vehicle pose, obstacles, ground roughness, slope etc.

The research in this PhD programme will develop novel algorithms for traversability analysis in previously unknown, dynamic and unstructured environments. The PhD programme will leverage traditional methods as well as state of the art machine learning based approaches to solve the problem.

Position Requirements:

  • Must have a Bachelor’s degree with the first Class Honours or a Master’s degree with Research in a relevant area in the past 5 years (e.g., Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Mechatronics, Physics or other related fields)
  • Strong competencies in one or more of the followings areas: Robotics, Navigation, Computer Vision, Machine learning, Deep Learning.
  • Demonstrated strong programming skills in C++ or Python in Linux.
  • Demonstrated Research Experience e.g. a good publication record.
  • Demonstrated Experience in Robot Operating System.

How to apply

Prospective students should send the following documents in a SINGLE PDF file to Dr. Navinda Kottege ( with the subject [PhD Traversability], including:

  • a current c.v.
  • details of grades or an academic transcript
  • one page cover letter explaining your research background and interests,


Dr. Navinda Kottege (

Applications close