Volunteer Position – Engineer, Electromyography

  • 3-4 hours per week for research and meetings as part of a team
  • Remote / online
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent with hands-on experience in electrical engineering, biomedical engineering, or related fields.
  • Experience with EMG or other bioelectric measurements would be an asset

The Freedom of Form Foundation is a nonprofit working to support and advocate for scientific research that will enable freedom of one’s physical form – biotech for self-expression.

Electro-mechancial prosthetic devices are a technology we can use to modify our bodies rapidly and non-invasively, taking advantage of technologies that already exist. Decades of effort by others have developed prosthetic limbs that respond naturally to neural and muscular signals from the wearer. The Enhanced Tail project aims to use electromyographic (EMG) signals to control an existing robotic tail.

To date, we have developed a rudimentary EMG measurement system using off-the-shelf components and we have identified candidate muscles for tail control. However, challenges with reliability of the measurement system have limited our ability to gather quality data. As a new volunteer with our team, you will collaborate with us to develop electronic means of measuring and recording high-quality electromyographic (EMG) data through electrodes placed on the surface of your own skin. These data will underpin the models we design to translate EMG signals into intuitive, natural motion for a prosthetic tail.

Candidate profile:

  • Shows enthusiasm for tails and freedom of form
  • Bachelor’s (four year) degree or advanced degree in electrical/electronic engineering, biomedical engineering, or a related field
  • Experienced with electronic circuit design, analog signals, and measurement techniques
  • Experienced with building and testing electronic devices
  • Familiar with design of embedded hardware and software
  • Demonstrated ability to ask and answer technical questions using the scientific and grey literature
  • Experience with EMG or other bioelectric measurements would be an asset
  • Eager to learn about muscular and nervous system anatomy
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Strong written and verbal communicator
  • Willing to meet and correspond regularly via Discord with a team that is primarily active during evening hours, UTC-4 to UTC-7 (Americas)

All FFF volunteers and employees are expected to:

  • Demonstrate commitment to teamwork and professionalism.
  • Always keep learning, and likewise be willing to help others learn and improve.
  • Demonstrate tolerance to each other, to stakeholders, and to the broader community.
  • Maintain a collaborative attitude towards resolving conflict and disagreement.
  • Learn about regulations we must abide by, including, our Bylaws, Conflict of Interest Policy, Community Rules, Code of Conduct, regulations pertaining to 501(c)(3) organizations, and all laws. We can help get you up to speed on these, though!

Questions?

If you have any questions or want to discuss more before applying, please send an email to [email protected]. We won’t bite (too hard)!

In particular, if you are interested in this or other volunteering opportunities, and you’re not sure whether or not it would be a fit, please reach out and we’d be happy to explore possibilities with you.

Sounds good? Please apply!

Please send an email to [email protected] and attach your Resume or CV. Be sure to include the position title in the subject line in your email.

And don’t worry, you can skip the formal, corporate-voice cover letter! Just a few sentences about why you’re interested in our organization, and in this position, should be sufficient. Please note that our follow-up process is fairly low-key. We’re much more interested in two-way discussions and exploration, not formal interviews.