The Australian National University

Event Horizon

Research School of Physics


Weekly newsletter | vol 46 no 3 | 25–29 January 2021


Director's Message

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you had a good weekend, although I suspect many are taking advantage of the short week for one last break before 2021 kicks off in earnest.  I certainly am!

There are many elements of the changes set in motion last year that will take time to work through.  In the first Event Horizon of the year I flagged that I would be circulating a draft schedule for changes arising not only from the College Recovery Plan, but also from the first deliberations of our Working Parties.  The draft schedule is with the Associate Directors and Heads for their initial comments, ahead of releasing it to the School in the first week of February.  It will be on the School intranet, with updates noted in the Event Horizon.  As a ‘living’ document it will be responsive to your feedback and events that may impact on timing.

The Tuckwell Scholarships is one of the most prestigious undergraduate programs in the country.  The team that support the Scholars include a select group of Tuckwell Fellows.  I invite early to mid-career researchers to consider the program (see below). Dr AJ Mitchell (Nuclear Physics) has been our most recent Tuckwell Fellow and could share his experiences with those interested. Applications close at the end of the month.  

Another program for early to mid-career researchers to consider is the Technology Review award established by MIT.  The award goes to some of the brightest young minds under 35, and the sub-category for researchers in Asia-Pacific will recognise 20 young talents from Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand, SE Asia and Taiwan.   I encourage senior supervisors to support their colleagues considering this program.

This week’s pic comes to you from Parkes Way.  Our resident SciComm specialist and performer extraordinaire, Dr Phil Dooley, has just posted some lovely snap-shots of our research along the freeway.  The new building provides a chance to celebrate our work and over the next year we aim to run a series of snap-shots in this very public venue.  Each snap-shot will be supported by a story on the Physics website.  If you have ideas for a story and snap-shot please let Phil know.  All you need for a snap-shot is a ‘hook’ (short catchy sentence), a photo of people in a research context.  The link can be a new or existing story.  An example of the banners can be seen here

To assist me this year with office operations could I please request that you contact me directly using the following guide.

Urgent matters: please text me on 04 1725 4539
Meetings: In Outlook or Teams, create a new invite to, add other names to attend, select scheduling assistant and determine the most convenient time.
All other: email or

Professor Patrick Kluth has kindly offered to be Acting Director this week.

Have a good week,



Equity and Diversity in RSPhys

The Equity and Diversity Committee will meet for the first time in 2021 on the 9th February. If you are interested in contributing to the committee’s work to improve the engagement and environment of underrepresented groups within our School, then please contact James Sullivan ( Contributions from any and all staff and students are encouraged.


Write that Journal Article Boot Camp, February 2021!

Did you promise yourself you will 'finish that paper' during the summer holidays and somehow it didn't happen? 

Want to make sure it will? 

Join our three day, online journal writing Bootcamp 10th - 12th of February 2021 with your writing coach, Professor Inger Mewburn (better known as @thesiswhisperer). 

» read more


Single-Phonon Addition and Subtraction to a Mechanical Thermal State

Using ANU’s precision diamond lathe, Dr Jiri Janousek fabricated a quantum whispering gallery mode resonator with Barium Fluoride. The Imperial College London and Oxford University colleagues use this device to demonstrate single-quantum-level quantum-state engineering. The team show that subtracting one photon can, counter-intuitively, double the mechanical thermal fluctuations of a opto-thermal system. The paper was published recently in Physical Review Letters.

» read more




Oliphant Tea Room

The Oliphant tea room is open with tea bags & coffee sachets only.

Please remember to bring your own cup & spoon.


Acting Director

Prof. Patrick Kluth


Australia Day - Public holiday Tuesday 26th January.


2021 Wall Planners

There will be no wall planners (calendars) for 2021, due to the current financial constraints the University is operating under.


Know your administrator...

Julie Arnold - EME & NLPC

Petra Rickman - NP/HIAF & ARC CDM

Belinda Barbour - DQS

Nikki Azzopardi - AM, CPF, LPC & TP


NHMRC schemes opening in 2021 (Q1)

The College of Science Research Office (CRO) is now inviting notices of intent (NoI) to submit applications for the following schemes opening in 2021.


The Tuckwell Scholarships Program

Is seeking to appoint a new Fellow to work with their scholars on a 0.2 FTE secondment. 

» read more


Volume Imaging Symposium

16th – 19th of February 2021
FULLY ONLINE – 4 half-days

VIS 2021 encompasses all forms of imaging and analyses involving the generation of 3D volumetric data in all branches of science. This includes, but is not limited to, LIGHT, ELECTRON and X-RAY imaging modalities and the associated visualisation and analysis approaches common to these techniques.

» read more


Physics @ ANU



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