This PhD brings together two distinct complementary topics: the emerging field of Reconfigurable Intelligent Surfaces (RIS) and the more mature field of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID).
Field of research : Telecommunications, RFID technology, Reconfigurable Intelligent Surfaces, Radio Propagation
Research Laboratory : Institut d’Electronique et des Technologies du Numérique (IETR) - UMR CNRS 6164, University of Rennes 1
Offer : 3 -year full time employment with a funded doctoral contract
Beginning of the PhD : October 2022 / 36 months
Objectives of the Ph.D
It has recently been shown  that RFID tags (without batteries), powered and controlled by a reader, can be used to support an RFID link operating on another frequency. This link is intended to modify the reflective characteristics of the channel through reconfigurable surfaces using RFID tags so as to modify the transmission characteristics of another link operating on another frequency channel in the same propagation environment.
Typically, smart surfaces (RIS) are fixed arrangements of switchable elements that allow the propagation channel to be modified in order to support secondary links for communication or location. The prospect opened up by the use of RFID tags for this purpose is to have much more diverse and flexible geometric structures (over the air). This Ph.D work will allow a fundamental analysis of the possibilities offered by these RIS surfaces based on experimentation and will have repercussions in both the RFID and RIS fields.
The thesis work is supervised by a team of researchers already invested in these two subjects, RIS , and RFID, and who can mobilise a powerful RFID characterization platform of the IETR for this work. The first step of the research aims to reproduce the recent results obtained in  and to push them further in the perspective of an active control of the propagation channels.
 Iosif Vardakis, Georgios Kotridis, Spyridon Peppas, Konstantinos Skyvalakis, Georgios Vougioukas, Aggelos Bletsas Intelligently Wireless Batteryless RF-Powered Reconfigurable Surface ( https://arxiv.org/abs/2105.14475)
 Faqiri, R., Saigre-Tardif, C., Alexandropoulos, G. C., Shlezinger, N., Imani, M. F., & del Hougne, P. (2022). PhysFad: Physics-Based End-to-End Channel Modeling of RIS-Parametrized Environments with Adjustable Fading. arXiv preprint arXiv:2202.02673.
 Zhao, H., Shuang, Y., Wei, M., Cui, T. J., del Hougne, P. , & Li, L. (2020). Metasurface-assisted massive backscatter wireless communication with commodity Wi-Fi signals. Nature Communications, 11(1), 1-10.
We are looking for a motivated MS student (or equivalent) with background in the field of telecommunications, applied mathematics or signal processing with a taste for experimentation and data analysis. A practical knowledge of software defined radio (SDR) is appreciated. Good experience with tools such as Matlab or Python would be also be highly appreciated. Good written English skills are expected.
To apply please provide a CV and a motivation letter, and reference letter (optional) to
Bernard Uguen : firstname.lastname@example.org
Sylvain Collardey : email@example.com
Philipp del Hougne : firstname.lastname@example.org
(c) GdR 720 ISIS - CNRS - 2011-2022.