Find more info about my research, projects, and software on the web page of our D3S research group:
Dynamic, Decentralized, Distributed Systems


Ph.D. position available in
"Low-power Localization for the Internet of Things"

Deadline: September 7, 2020 at 16:00 (Italy time, GMT +2)

Applications are invited from those interested in pursuing a PhD on Internet of Things (IoT) at the University of Trento, Italy.

The focus of the proposed research will be on ultra-wideband (UWB) radios, rapidly gaining popularity due to their ability to estimate distance (ranging) with great accuracy (<10cm error). This enables countless IoT applications based on proximity and localization, even in GPS-denied environments like indoor. The fact that Apple and Samsung are now equipped with an UWB chip is a witness to the disruptive impact of this technology.

The research proposed will explore ranging and localization aspects, along with their interplay with communication and with other low-power wireless technologies for IoT (e.g., Bluetooth or LoRa). The general goal of the PhD is to contribute novel paradigms and demonstrate their effectiveness with system prototypes. The evaluation of the latter will exploit the unique facilities available to the research team, which include 1) a 70-node testbed across two large building floors and 2) an optical localization facility yielding mm-level accurate ground truth.

Candidates can gather a glimpse of the research carried out from recent publications of the advisor (see link below), whose team is among the leading ones on UWB, with published papers at top conferences (EWSN18, IPSN19, SECON19, IROS19, IPIN19) two of which received the Best Paper Award:

The research team has a long-standing track record in the general field of low-power wireless technologies for IoT and has been successful in bringing research results into real-world prototypes and long-term operational deployments, yielding award-winning scientific publications, e.g., at IPSN (2009, 2011, 2015) and PerCom (2012).

The research team favors a mix of curiosity-driven and application-driven research. New PhD students are invited to participate in ongoing projects to gain experience and insights into real systems, and to identify novel, challenging problems whose solution breaks new grounds. Examples of past and ongoing (funded) projects applying UWB and the related research include an asset tracking system for logistics, a system monitoring the trajectories of people in indoor spaces, a novel drone-based localization system, a social distancing device, and even a ground navigation system in support of planetary exploration.

A good candidate is expected to have general knowledge about low-power wireless communications, as well as hands-on experience with networked embedded systems programming and deployment. Specific knowledge of UWB concepts and systems (e.g., Decawave transceivers) is particularly welcome.

The language of the research group is English.

The Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science (DISI) is a leading and fast-growing research institution, characterized by a young and international faculty and by a large, international student population. Indicators for scientific production place the department among the top in Europe. The Department and the PhD school closely collaborate with, and operate in, a rapidly growing research and innovation environment characterized by top-class research centers and an increasing number of industrial research labs, including the Italian co-location center of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).

Trento is a vibrant city with a beautifully preserved historic center, consistently ranked among the best cities for quality of life in Italy. It offers a variety of cultural and sports opportunities all year round, as well as excellent food and wine.

Applications must be filed online at the link below before
SEPTEMBER 7, 2020 at 16:00 (Italy time, GMT +2)


In the application, you must select the "Project specific grant" (Reserved Topic Scholarship) with the title below "Low-power Localization for the Internet of Things (IoT)" (label A3).
Failure to do so results in ineligibility for the position described here.

It is strongly advised to contact Prof. Gian Pietro Picco ( before submitting the application, by providing a curriculum vitae including three references.