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Researcher in Wound Ballistics (MSP/23-04 - AWBEM) M/W/X

Ref 3507245

Geactualiseerd op 09 juni 2023 via ECOLE ROYALE MILITAIRE

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Beschrijving van de onderneming

The Royal Military Academy of Belgium (RMA) is a military institution responsible for the basic academic, military and physical training of future officers, and for the continuing advanced training of officers during their active career in the Belgian Defense department ( It is fully recognized as a university, fulfilling the same criteria as civilian universities. The Royal Military Academy is also conducting scientific research at university level for projects funded by the Belgian Defense department or external sources.

You work within the department of Weapon Systems and Ballistics of the Faculty of Polytechnics of the Royal Military Academy. You conduct scientific research at university level on a project entitled ¿Development of computer-based empirical models for wound ballistics vulnerability assessment¿ (AWBEM).


In the framework of a research project funded by the Belgian Defence, we are looking for a junior research scientist/engineer with a master's degree in Mechanical Engineering, Biomechanical Engineering or Material Sciences (Applied Sciences, Engineering Sciences).


Wound ballistics is the science of injuries occurring on the human body when undergoing a ballistic impact. Typically, this field is restricted to small calibre ammunition and fragments, which are still today two of the main threats for the human body during military operations. Ultimately, the purpose is to assess the target incapacitation probability when undergoing a penetrative ballistic impact. This complex applied science gathers expertise of biomechanics, ballistics, medicine and even behavioural sciences when incapacitation is concerned. Due to the high-energy, fast nature of the penetrative phenomenon, inducing various failure mechanisms on complex materials such as living tissues, this science mostly uses empirical models and strong simplifications in order to achieve a result. Typically, homogeneous isotropic simulants are used, ballistic gelatin mostly, which will capture the global penetration mechanisms and the behaviour of the projectile during penetration.

The purpose of the proposed study is to develop a computer-based tool composed of empirical models for studying the injury potential of small calibre ballistic projectiles and the consequent incapacitation probability.

It will consist in a hybrid experimental and computational study, leading both to the design and optimization of experimental tests and the development of dedicated post-processing software and computational survivability models (see ¿Main tasks).

The study will be performed in collaboration with personnel of the military hospital, and several legal doctors from Belgium and Europe.

Main Tasks

  • Firstly, an extensive literature study will be the first objective of the study. Parallelly, a learning process of the experimental means is envisioned.
  • Secondly, ballistic experimental setups should be developed in order to perform shooting on gelatine in a repeatable and reproducible way. It consists in using the available launchers, velocity measurement devices and high- speed cameras.
  • Thirdly, the implementation and refinement of software developed for performing 3D ballistic tracking is required, based on the videos obtained during the experimental campaign.
  • Finally, a wound ballistic computational model will be developed. It will simulate the results obtained during the experimental campaign on a developed virtual human being.


Required skills

Technical skills

The applicant shall have a Master degree in Engineering (Applied Sciences, Engineering Sciences) in the field of Mechanical Engineering, Biomechanical engineering or Material Sciences.

  • The applicant shall have academic (study project and/or master thesis) or professional experience in conducting measurements
  • The applicant shall have relevant skills in programming or in the implementation of models

Personal skills 

  • Ability to conduct scientific research at university level
  • Ability to work independently and in a multidisciplinary research team
  • Excellent written communication skills, both for scientific communications and for general public communications
  • Good oral communication skills for scientific communications
  • Honesty and loyalty towards the organization
  • Solution-oriented.

Other skills

  • The applicant shall have an excellent command of the English language (to read and write scientific publications).
  • Experience in the medical field is an added value
  • Experience in Biomechanics is an added value
  • Experience in ballistics is an added value
  • Experience in LabVIEW is an added value
  • Experience in Python is an added value
  • Experience with Blender is an added value
  • Minimal knowledge of French and/or Dutch is recommended (collaboration with pers)
  • Experience in scientific literature review and scientific writing is an added value

Specific requirement

  • The researcher can be exposed to classified information and will therefore have to obtain the required security clearance. The candidate must consent with the background check required to obtain this clearance, which will be executed by the Belgian Defence.
  • When working for the Patrimony, the researcher is required to live in Belgium.

Voordelen van de betrekking


  • Probable date of recruitment: From July 2023, in consultation with the applicant.
  • Status: Full-time employment based on an open-ended contract with the Patrimony of the Royal Military Academy (you will not be a civil servant).
  • Wage scale: class A2 (holder of an Ir degree or equivalent Master's in Engineering Sciences).
  • Holiday pay.


Extra-legal benefits

  • Possibility of receiving a bilingualism allowance (Dutch/French) following a SELOR test;
  • End-of-year bonus;
  • Free DKV hospitalization insurance. Possibility of additional affiliation for one or more persons living under the same roof: spouse, child(ren) (50% of the price per additional member);
  • Bike allowance / Free public transport (home-work commute);
  • Free access to campus sports facilities outside working hours;
  • On-campus restaurant and cafeteria with democratic prices (discount on the daily menu);
  • Flexible working hours within the 38-hour week;
  • Teleworking possible;
  • Additional holiday for all staff between Christmas and New Year;
  • 26 days holiday / year (then from 45 years: +1 day holiday every 5 years) from the 1st year of contract + 3 days / year dispensation from service offered by the department;
  • Advantages and interesting offers thanks to the Benefits@work card (discounts, vouchers...) ;
  • Entitlement to services offered by the `Office Central d'Action Sociale et Culturelle de la Défense' (OCASC): among others holiday centres, discount on travel organised by the tour operator...;
  • Possibility of benefiting from the nursery funded by Belgian Defence (subject to availability).


Extra informatie
Werkplek Brussel, België
Soort overeenkomst : Werk
Andere informatie :


You will be working in a military environment. That is why everyone is expected to undergo a security verification. Please add to your application the filled out document. The form can be downloaded from:


Send by email:

  • a motivational letter;
  • a CV
  • a scan of your ID card (both sides);
  • the filled out security document

to Mr. Cyril ROBBE ( ) & Mr. Alexandre Papy ( ) and to Mrs Helena BRUYNINCKX (

Please mention clearly the reference of the project: MSP/23-04 - AWBEM.

Application deadline: 09th June 2023.

The interviews will take place at the Royal Military Academy, Hobbemastraat 8, 1000 Brussels. In case of access restriction due to COVID-19 or non-Belgian application, on-line interviews will take place. The date and time of the interview will be communicated to the preselected candidates.


  • Royal Military Academy, Avenue de la Renaissance 30, 1000 Brussels;
  • Occasional travels abroad for scientific conferences, etc.

Points of contact

  • Concerning the research project: Mr. Cyril ROBBE ( )
  • Concerning the recruitment modalities: Mrs. Helena Bruyninckx (
  • For more information about the Royal Military Academy, see
  • Bruxelles
  • Studies, onderzoek en ontwikkeling
  • Voltijds
  • Met ervaring

Hoe solliciteren?

Naam van de werkgever
MONSIEUR Robbe Cyril

C.V. opsturen via "E-Mail"