Date Posted
18 Nov 2021

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PhD Project
University of Melbourne – Agriculture Victoria

PhD fellowship in UAV based remote sensing for agriculture research

18 Nov 2021

Position Description

Job Description

Are you enthusiastic about remote sensing in high-throughput phenotyping approaches for crop breeding research? If you are interested in employing UAVs, multispectral and LiDAR in extracting phenotyping parameters and understanding the underlying mechanism that governs crop yield, this PhD fellowship can be for you.

Understanding the interaction of genotype with the environment is of prime importance, which can be achieved by the measurement of phenotypic traits of the crop. The field of phenomics is a large-scale collection of data-set to study, analyze and understand the interaction of genomic variations with the varying environment by revealing the relation between genotype and phenotypes. Traditionally, plant phenotyping has been achieved by manually collecting the data from the plants to select the best performing genotype. Technological advancement in the plant phenotyping has been a topic of interest among interdisciplinary researchers in recent years. The efforts have been put into using and optimizing the available technologies to adapt to the need for plant phenotyping. From the perspective of non-invasive measurement of phenotypic traits, the state-of-the-art remote sensing technology of UAV based multispectral, photogrammetric and LiDAR is promising.

Project Outline and Tasks

Your primary responsibilities will be to:

· Optimise multispectral, photogrammetric and LiDAR sensor systems integrated on UAV platforms for high-throughput field phenotyping in grain crops, considering factors such as data sampling rate, field-of-view, sensitivity and modalities required for sensor operation.

Identify best practises in data processing and analysis for plant phenotyping, including generation of point cloud metrices, vegetation and morphological indices, segmentation, voxelization, classification, and 3D reconstruction of crops.
Participate in scientific conferences and workshops as well as events in the area of plant phenotyping and remote sensing.
Publish your findings in scientific journals.

Candidates are required to have:

· A Masters or Bachelors in agricultural science, remote sensing, computer science, electronics, or similar.

Experience with analysis of large data sets and scientific programming.
Desirable though not necessary,knowledge in computer vision, machine learning, data processing, spatial data analysis and GIS software will be valued.
Clear and concise communication skills in English.
A positive attitude, a strong drive and eagerness to learn.

Who is eligible?

Australian citizens or Permanent Residents will be preferred considering the current situation with COVID-19 travel restrictions to timely start the PhD.


The assessment of the applicants will be made by Dr. Surya Kant, Senior Research Scientist, Agriculture Victoria, Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions | Principal Fellow Honorary, The University of Melbourne.

We offer

Established in 1853, the University of Melbourne is a public-spirited institution that makes distinctive contributions to society in research, learning and teaching and engagement. It’s consistently ranked among the leading universities in the world, with international rankings of world universities placing it as number 1 in Australia and number 32 in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2017-2018).

Agriculture Victoria is a government enterprise that works with the agriculture industry on research, development and extension to improve production, connect the sector with international markets, support development and maintain effective biosecurity controls.

The successful candidate will receive:

• A $33,000 p.a. (tax-free) scholarship for up to three and a half years

• Professional development programs

• Access to state-of-the-art technologies

The PhD fellowships will be based at Agriculture Victoria, Grains Innovation Park, Horsham, Victoria, Australia

Further information

Further information may be obtained from Dr. Surya Kant, Email: and Dr. Bikram Banerjee

Job Type: Full-time
Salary: A$33,000.00 per year

How to Apply

Please submit your application to Dr. Surya Kant by Email: and Dr. Bikram Banerjee The application must include: A letter motivating the application (cover letter) Curriculum vitae Grade transcripts for Bachelors or Masters degree Thesis copy

Position Category: Engineering. Position Type: PhD Project. Salary: €20'000 - €30'000.