2017 News archive

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December 2017
Neutron-star merger creates new cosmic mysteries   View Summary
21 December 2017
Artistic Impression Two Stars Orbiting (NASA)An international team including Associate Professor Tara Murphy has been studying a neutron star collision and found an unusual cocoon of debris, raising doubts about the source of short gamma ray bursts.
October 2017
Prime Minister comments on the University of Sydney's role in GW discovery   View Summary
19 October 2017
Artistic Impression Two Stars Orbiting (NASA)Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull paid tribute to the University of Sydney's gravitational waves finding.
After the alert: radio 'eyes' hunt the source of the gravitational waves   View Summary
17 October 2017
SIfA members A/Prof. Tara Murphy, Dr Christene Lynch and PhD student Dougal Dobie have been part of a major international discovery that's pinpointed the exact location of two neutron stars colliding.
September 2017
Astronomers spun up by galaxy-shape finding   View Summary
12 September 2017
Spiral GalaxyFor the first time astronomers have measured how a galaxy's spin affects its shape. It sounds simple, but measuring a galaxy's true 3D shape is a tricky problem that astronomers first tried to solve 90 years ago.
Kepler satellite discovers variability in the Seven Sisters   View Summary
6 September 2017
Sydney University PhD alumnus, Dr Tim White (currently of the Stellar Astrophysics Centre at Aarhus University) and his team of Danish, Australian and and international astronomers have demonstrated a powerful new technique for observing stars within the Pleiades star cluster, ordinarily far too bright to look at with high performance telescopes.
The challenges of low-frequency radio polarimetry: Lessons from the Murchison Widefield Array   View Summary
5 September 2017
In a paper recently accepted for publication, Dr Emil Lenc , CAASTRO/SIFA researcher at University of Sydney, and his colleagues, outline the techniques developed to calibrate and correct MWA observations for polarimetry.
July 2017
Scientists unveil new 3D view of galaxies   View Summary
27 July 2017
Unique, high-quality 3D data of 772 galaxies, obtained with the 3.9m Anglo-Australian Telescope as part of the SAMI Galaxy Survey, have been released to the astronomical community.
June 2017
From Large to Small: The history of the Cosmos   View Summary
20 June 2017
A team of SIfA members, led by Prof. Geraint Lewis and Prof. Joss Bland-Hawthorn, has been awarded the HPC Artemis Grand Challenge for massive computation. The project, entitled "Astrophysics Grand Challenge: From Large to Small", aims to shed light on how galaxies come into being.
SIfA becomes the first astronomy group partner in an ARC Training Centre   View Summary
6 June 2017
The three Australian CubSats taking off on the Atlas V rocket.. Photo:NASA The School of Physics with Iver Cairns as Director is leading an ARC Industrial Transformation Training Centre (ITTC) for CubeSats, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, and their Applications. The other School of Physics Chief Investigators are A/Prof Joe Khachan and Dr Sergio Leon-Saval. This multidisciplinary training centre project is funded for 5 years with $4,619,950.
May 2017
A Magnetic Field in the Magellanic Bridge   View Summary
23 May 2017
For the first time, a team of astronomers led by SIfA PhD student Jane Kaczmarek, has detected a magnetic field associated with the Magellanic Bridge, a gaseous structure in the nearby Magellanic Clouds system.
ASA awards go to Sydney graduates   View Summary
16 May 2017
Great success for SIfA graduates, winners of the ASA prices for best PhD Thesis in Astronomy and for outstanding research paper.
Why data-driven science is more than just a buzzword   View Summary
11 May 2017
Forget looking through a telescope at the stars. An astronomer today is more likely to be online: digitally scheduling observations, running them remotely on a telescope in the desert, and downloading the results for analysis.
INSPIRE-2 CubSat successfully launched to space   View Summary
3 May 2017
The three Australian CubSats taking off on the Atlas V rocket.. Photo:NASAINSPIRE-2, the CubSat partly developed at the University of Sydney made it to space on April the 19th. The mini satellite carries 5 unique instruments that will demonstrate different space technologies. This is the first time in 15 years that Australia makes it back to space!
March 2017
New survey finds Peter Pan Radio Galaxies   View Summary
16 March 2017
A team of astronomers has doubled the number of known young, compact radio galaxies—galaxies powered by newly energized black holes. The improved tally will help astronomers understand the relationship between the size of these radio sources and their age, as well as the nature of the galaxy itself.
February 2017
Data-driven Astronomy MOOC   View Summary
24 February 2017
A/Prof Tara MurphyThe first online astronomy course of its kind
Stibbs Lecture 2017 on LIGO Gravitational waves: The birth of a new kind of Astronomy   View Summary
18 February 2017
Sydney Institute of Astronomy proudly presents David Reitze, Executive Director of the LIGO Laboratory at the Caltech and a Professor of Physics at the University of Florida.
Prestigious Visiting Miller Professorship awarded to prof. Joss Bland-Hawthorn   View Summary
7 February 2017
Professor Bland-HawthornARC Fellowship and SIfA director , Prof. Joss Bland-Hawthorn is the 6th Australian to win the prestigious Visiting Miller Professorship to work the University of California Berkeley, United States.
January 2017
Prof. Geraint Lewis: 2016 Boas Medal Winner   View Summary
31 January 2017
Prof. Geraint Lewis won the 2016 Boas MedalCongratulations to professor Geraint Lewis, winner of the AIP's Boas Medal for the 2016 for the discovery of an unexpected plane of dwarf galaxies orbiting larger galaxies in the Local Universe