AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS

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The AIP runs a monthly bulletin that goes out to over 4000 scientists, future scientists and those interested in science! 

To provide physics news or subscribe to the AIP bulletin please email physics@scienceinpublic.com.au.

To advertise in the bulletin, see our Jobs page.

  • 1 Sep 2021 3:21 PM | Anonymous

    Professor Eric May (University of Western Australia and AIP member) has been named Scientist of the Year at the 2021 WA Premier's Science Awards ceremony.

    Professor May is an internationally-recognised leader in the areas of fluid science, thermodynamics and natural gas engineering.

    His development and use of measurement technology has produced explanations for long-standing scientific mysteries, revealed unexpected physical phenomena and helped improve industrial processes.

    Premier's Science Awards were also presented to:

    • Associate Professor Edward Litton (University of Western Australia and Fiona Stanley Hospital) and Dr Arman Siahvashi (University of Western Australia) - joint winners of the Woodside Early Career Scientist of the Year
    • Liam Scarlett (Curtin University) and Niamh Troy (University of Western Australia and Telethon Kids Institute) - ExxonMobil Student Scientist of the Year
    • Daniel Curran (Curtin University) - Shell Aboriginal STEM Student of the Year
    • FIRST LEGO League WA (Curtin University) - Chevron Science Engagement Initiative of the Year. 

    Professor Richard Hobbs (University of Western Australia) became the 16th person to be inducted into the WA Science Hall of Fame.

    For more information about the Premier's Science Awards, including the winners and finalists, visit http://www.jtsi.wa.gov.au/ScienceAwards

  • 1 Sep 2021 3:19 PM | Anonymous

    The AIP is calling for Australian-based female physicists to apply for the 2022 AIP Women in Physics Lecture Tour. Applications are open now and close on 17 September 2021.

    The AIP Women in Physics Lecture Tour is a celebration of women’s contribution to the advancement of physics, and is presented every alternate year by an internationally-based physicist.

    2022 was scheduled to host an international physicist, but COVID-19 makes this impractical.

    For this reason, the AIP is re-opening applications to Australian women physicists.

    The AIP greatly appreciates the applications it has received and will contact applicants to determine if they wish to be considered for future opportunities. This is an excellent opportunity for an EMCR physicist to expand their domestic networks and inspire the next generation of physicists around the country.


  • 1 Sep 2021 3:16 PM | Anonymous

    The 2021 AIP Women in Physics Lecturer, Associate Professor Susanna Guatelli, is wrapping up her lecture series in Western Australia this month.

    She has criss-crossed the country talking about her work, which includes how to keep astronauts safe from radiation during the long haul to Mars.

    The last talks are:

    Women in Physics morning tea (for academics and students)

    2 September 10:30 – 11:30 am AWST

    University of Western Australia

    Registration: https://bit.ly/3x1ezHF


    Women in Physics afternoon tea (for academics and students)

    2 September 3:30 – 4:30 pm AWST

    Curtin University

    Registration: https://bit.ly/3x1ezHF

  • 1 Sep 2021 12:37 PM | Anonymous

    It is with great regret that we are informing you that colleague and friend Ian Bassett passed away on 26 August after a short illness.

    Ian’s career in optics was very varied: he joined the theoretical physics department at the University of Sydney in the 1960s, he was one of the founders of the Optical Fibre Technology Centre, he led fibre sensor R&D in the Australian Photonics CRC working with ABB, and later played a key role in the start-up Smart Digital Optics (SDO) which was acquired by an international company.

    The last decades of his career were largely devoted to developing a fibre optic current sensor for use in the electricity industry. It started as a PhD project and was ultimately the key product of SDO. For this work he was awarded the AIP’s inaugural Alan Walsh Medal for Service to Industry.

    Ian was a gentleman and an outstanding colleague and mentor to many junior colleagues, including us.

    Simon Fleming, Martijn de Sterke.

    (Dr Ian Bassett was AIP Secretary from 1985-1989)

  • 1 Sep 2021 12:33 PM | Anonymous

    The AIP is very excited to announce the following awards:


    WALTER BOAS MEDAL


    2019 Walter Boas Medal

    Professor Andrea Morello

    UNSW Sydney

    For Professor Morello’s world-first demonstration of quantum information processing with single spins in silicon, and for developing the fundamental components of a silicon-based quantum computer.


    2020 Walter Boas Medal

    Professor Joss Bland-Hawthorn

    University of Sydney

    Professor Bland-Hawthorn laid the foundations for modern Galactic archaeology, near-field cosmology and astrophotonics, a field that lies at the interface of photonics and astronomical instrumentation.


    BRAGG GOLD MEDAL


    2019 Bragg Gold Medal

    Dr Samuel Gorman

    University of New South Wales

    For Dr Gorman’s thesis entitled: "Charge and spin dynamics in multi-donor systems"


    2020 Bragg Gold Medal

    Dr Alexander Bray

    Australian National University

    For Dr Bray’s thesis entitled: “Strong field sub-femtosecond electronic processes”


    TH LABY MEDAL


    2018 TH Laby Medal

    Felicity Lee

    Australian National University

    For her thesis entitled: “Pulsed Hydrogen Plasmas: Modelling and Experiment”.

    And


    Albert Zhou

    University of Sydney

    For his thesis entitled: “The Cosmological Electroweak Phase Transition in a Scale-Invariant Standard Model”.


    2019 TH Laby Medal

    Simon White

    University of Technology Sydney

    For his thesis entitled: “Efficient Tomography of Quantum Dots in Photonic Chips”


    2020 TH Laby Medal

    Matthew Goh

    Australian National University

    For his thesis entitled: “Feedback Control of atomic Fermi Gases”


    We congratulate these award winners on their achievements.  


  • 1 Sep 2021 12:29 PM | Anonymous

    Fifteen DECRA applications and 17 Future Fellowship applications were ruled ineligible in this round because they cited preprints such as arXiv papers.

    “If you rip [money] out of physics, that’s bad to begin with. But doing it at the point where we have early career researchers establishing themselves is the worst thing you can do. That’s what we live on, bringing good new people into the system,” said Sven Rogge in an article by The Times Higher Education:
    Toll of ARC’s preprints rule revealed. Fears for physics pipeline, as 32 researchers relinquish up to $22m for citing preprints.

    On behalf of the Australian physics, astronomy, chemistry and mathematics communities, the AIP, ASA, RACI and AustMS coordinated a letter to the Australian Research Council to protest the ruling.

    It’s also been picked up by various media outlets including The Guardian.

  • 24 Aug 2021 3:14 PM | Anonymous

    A letter to the Australian Research Council regarding the eligibility of grant proposals that reference preprints has been coordinated by the AIP, ASA, RACI and AustMS, on behalf on the Australian Physics, Astronomy, Chemistry and Mathematics communities.  It is available here:  http://aip.org.au/Advocacy.  The letter has been co-signed by leaders in these disciplines at universities across Australia. Thank you to everyone who contributed. Thanks also to those who reached out to the AIP to let us know their stories.

  • 19 Aug 2021 5:00 PM | Anonymous

    We are aware that a significant number of DECRA and Future Fellowship applications were ruled ineligible in this round because they cited preprints such as arXiv papers. We consider this to be completely at odds with the way modern science operates, especially in the field of Physics where arXiv papers are used routinely. The AIP is currently working on a more formal response on this issue, in coordination with other stakeholders. Please reach out to the AIP (aip@aip.org.au) urgently if you have any input on this topic.

  • 19 Aug 2021 4:00 PM | Anonymous

    The Australian Institute of Physics would like to congratulate all recipients of the recently announced ARC Future Fellowships and Discovery Early Career Researcher Awards, and express commiserations to those who were unsuccessful in this round. It was great to see 7 Future Fellowships and 11 DECRAs awarded in Physical Sciences this year. These projects are vital to the continued development of Australia’s outstanding physics community and provide excellent career opportunities for those selected. We are excited to see where these projects take Physics in Australia.

  • 2 Aug 2021 2:15 PM | Anonymous

    Equity and diversity issues must be taken seriously, says the ANU School of Physics.

    In a statement, the school says its staff and students “aim to create a culture where our staff and students can work and study in an inclusive environment regardless of their gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age or religion.”

    More details here.

AIP news and bulletin posts prior to 20 June 2021 can be found here.

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