Automating neonatal oxygen therapy

Automating oxygen therapy in low-resource neonatal intensive care

Degree type


Closing date

25 September 2023



Citizenship requirement

Domestic / International

About the research project

Intensive care units worldwide care for neonates having difficulty breathing and maintaining a safe and healthy blood oxygen saturation. The biggest need for this is in low resource settings and it is indeed one of the world's big challenges in terms of health and mortality, with the main issue being difficulty in keeping oxygen levels safe.  We have recently engineered world-leading technology (known as OxyGenie®) for neonatal high-resource intensive care settings that has solved this problem and is now used routinely in those settings worldwide, automatically maintaining oxygen saturation in the desired target range.  However, in low-resource settings there are resourcing limitations that restrict the use of this technology and demands a somewhat different solution. This project involves joining our team to explore a potential solution to this problem for low-resource settings. It is envisaged that this will involve adapting our high-resource automated oxygen technology to low-resource neonatal intensive care.  The project will involve investigation, development and evaluation of prototype methods and device, including aspects such as hardware, control algorithms and software, followed by exploring benchtop and clinical performance in controlled and realistic settings. Candidates with interests and expertise in any aspect of design and implementation of technology and in experimental and clinical testing and evaluation are encouraged to apply.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Dr Timothy Gale


Applicants will be considered for a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship or Tasmania Graduate Research Scholarship (TGRS) which, if successful, provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $31,500 per annum (2023 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

If successful, international applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.

As part of the application process you may indicate if you do not wish to be considered for scholarship funding.

Other funding opportunities and fees

For further information regarding other scholarships on offer, and the various fees of undertaking a research degree, please visit our Scholarships and fees on research degrees page.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Ensure your eligibility for the scholarship round by referring to our Key Dates.

Additional eligibility criteria specific to this project/scholarship:

  • Applicants must be able to undertake the project on-campus

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Additional essential selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Technical qualifications in electronics or mechatronics engineering or similar relevant to development of automation and control systems for medical devices

Additional desirable selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Previous research experience or qualifications
  • Experience in design and implementation of automation systems involving electronics, microcontrollers and software
  • Clinical medical training or experience
  • Background in experimental testing and evaluation
  • Knowledge of low-resource settings

Application process

  1. Select your project, and check that you meet the eligibility and selection criteria, including citizenship;
  2. Contact Dr Timothy Gale to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. In your application:
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • Submit a signed supervisory support form, a CV including contact details of 2 referees and your project research proposal.
  4. Apply prior to 25 September 2023.

Full details of the application process can be found under the 'How to apply' section of the Research Degrees website.

Following the closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

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