The Australian National University

Event Horizon

Research School of Physics


Weekly newsletter | vol 46 no 23 | 14–18 June 2021


Director's Message

Dear Colleagues,

My congratulations again to Neil Manson, Ros and Jim Williams and Lawrence Cram on their respective Orders of Australia announced on Sunday. (image from the Order of Australia Booklet)

Are you tired of thinking up new passwords? The ANUPassport project will see ANU gradually move to password-less, multikey authentication, offering far more secure access to our systems. I have volunteered our School to be part of the pilot rollout, kicking off in July (see below). If you would like to join this pilot please email with your UID and mention you are from RSPhys by June 30th. All Staff and students are very welcome to join.

Another very important part of keeping you safe is our regular electrical safety audit achieved though testing each and every appliance and distribution board in the School. This is a massive and ongoing task. I greatly appreciate your assistance as Pat Lang, our School Electrician and his team move gradually through every lab and office. Please keep an eye open for emails from Pat about electrical testing. The School Facilities team will be coordinating with you the best time to undertake testing in labs. I have a box of chocolates to the first person who makes the closest estimate of the total number of circuits that need testing in our School. The winner will be announced in the next Event Horizon.

Thank you, all, in advance for contributing to the VC’s ANU 2025 plan this week, and I hope to see you at one of the sessions.

Have a good week,


A Reminder About Electrical Safety Test and Tag...

Do not use equipment that does not have a current safety test tag attached to it.

All equipment that is capable of being connected to the electricity supply must be inspected for electrical safety, and tagged, prior to it being connected to the mains supply. Note smaller plug-in devices such as phone chargers, USB chargers, and laptop chargers also require testing and tagging.

Test and tag of equipment can only be completed by an approved person.

» read more


Exploring Learning and Teaching (ELT)

The ANU Centre for Learning and Teaching offers a range of short intensive courses to build and enhance your teaching practices. They are offering a suite of new programs in 2021, commencing with Exploring Learning and Teaching (ELT). ELT offers a hands-on experience that introduces you to important aspects of learning and teaching in the higher education context. This program is ideal for anyone who is new to teaching or looking to consolidate their teaching practice. Both face-to-face and online options available.

The next ELT intensive course will commence on July 19th. Please register at

All academic staff, demonstrators and tutors in physics are encouraged to participate.

For any queries, please contact :


Education Role: 2nd Year Lab Coordinator - Expression of Interest

We are looking for an academic to be the 2nd year lab coordinator. Currently this role is filled by Dr Giovanni Guccione who needs to hand it over to a new set of hands in Sem 1 2022. We are hoping to have someone involved in the program in Sem 2 2021 so we have a smooth transition.

» read more


3 Minute Thesis Competition

3MT: Three Minute Thesis (RSPhys round)

All Physics HDR students are invited to present their research in three minutes!

When: 10am on 1st July, 2021, Finkel Theatre

Register your interest by emailing

Prizes are on offer for the best presentation ($200, $100, $100).

All Physics candidates are also eligible to compete at the College level, regardless of their achievement at the School level.

» read more


3MT: Three Minute Thesis (College final)

The College of Science and College of Health and Medicine are hosting a 3MT Final on Tuesday 20 July from 1pm-3pm.

The event will be held in the China in World Auditorium and will be followed by afternoon tea in the atrium.

» read more


HDR Oral Examination Forum

Thu 17 Jun 2021, 10am
Oral examination and the future of the ANU PhD.

This forum will be a chance for you to ask questions and have input into the final report to the Higher Degrees by Research Committee. Anyone involved in the HDR endeavour at ANU - candidates, supervisors and administrators - are welcome. Please come along and have a say in the future of the ANU PhD.

» read more


Workshop for Physics HDR Students - “Raising Your Research Profile”

The workshop will focus on disseminating research and developing your profile as a serious researcher involves much more than simply writing about good research. This workshop will help you choose the right outlet for your work, navigate submission and peer review processes, and understand bibliometrics and open access options. It will also explore how to tell researchers about your work and turn your article or chapter into a blog post.

» read more


Upcoming HDR Workshops

Journal article writing
June 18, 10am-12pm 

Targeting a journal and responding to reviewers
June 18, 1-3pm

Editing for narrative 
25 November, 10am-12pm

Editing for style
25 November, 1-3pm

» read more


Scientists lead ambitious study to reach infinity and beyond - Breakthrough Starshot Initiative
CGA scientists in collaboration with The Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics are developing architecture for an ambitious initiative to sail an ultra-lightweight spacecraft to travel to the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, about four light years away from the Earth. The spacecraft would reach the destination within 20 years of launch. This journey, if possible at all, can take more than 100 lifetimes with the current technology. The technology proposed by the team involves a giant laser array with millions of lasers acting in concert to illuminate the sail and push the spacecraft onto its interstellar journey. 

» read more



The Board of Editors appointed Yuri Kivshar as Deputy Editor-in-Chief for Photonics Research, a journal co-published by Optical Society of America (OSA) and Chinese Laser Press (CLP). Photonics Research is ranked 10th out of 97 journals in the category of optics, and his 2019 Impact Factor is 6.099.





Oliphant Tea Room

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

Please remember to bring your own cup & spoon.

*coffee grounds for garden use are available



Petra Rickman will be on leave 11/6/21-17/6/21


Need to Schedule a Meeting with the Director?

For ANU Outlook users
Open a new invite for, and use Scheduling Assistant to propose a mutually convenient time and send.  

For all others
Please send an email request to 

Tim will reply to any meeting requests ASAP


Building and Room Security Access

Please note that the school now has a general access restriction of 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday.  

If you need to complete a new after-hours risk assessment, please see the new top section here:




Departmental seminars

Professor Raymond Volkas - 17 June
Are misbehaving muons taking us beyond the standard model of particle physics?
» read more


Liquid Instruments Launch - 23 June

Liquid Instruments new hardware launch - Professor Daniel Shaddock

» read more


School Seminar Program - 24 June

Inter-spacecraft Laser Interferometry for Gravity Sensing - Dr Kirk McKenzie

» read more


Know your administrator...

Sonia Padrun - Team Leader

Julie Arnold - EME & NLPC

Petra Rickman - NP/HIAF & ARC CDM

Belinda Barbour - DQS

Nikki Azzopardi - AM, CPF, LPC & TP


Know your School team...

Sue Berkeley -
Finance Team Leader

Goran Radovanovic -
Stores Services  

Hannah Phan - Purchasing/Finance Services 

Patrick Romero - Stores/Purchasing Services


Know your student admin...

Liudmila (Luda) Mangos -
Higher Degree Research admin
C3.02C, Cockcroft bldg (Mon-Fri 9.30-5pm)

Siobhan Ryman -
Physics Education Centre admin and HDR
1.05, Bldg 38A (Mon-Tues 8.30-4pm) ; C3.02C, Cockcroft bldg (Wed-Fri 8.30-4pm)


HCF Membership Drive

HCF would like to offer phone consultations for any interested ANU staff on 23 and 29 June. These can be booked via the link.


RCD Testing

RSPhys South is going to begin its RCD testing in its locations deemed “Non-hostile” only, beginning Wednesday the 9th and finishing up Friday 18th of June.

The testing is primarily over and done by 8:00AM - 8:30AM (Beginning at 6:00AM) and booting up your PCs on arrival to your workstation etc. is expected to be the only inconvenience to be endured.

For any further information please contact the Infrastructure Team.


Kitchen Etiquette

Can all RSPhys staff/students please be aware of the following kitchen hygiene/etiquette that we must follow to maintain a clean and healthy working environment at RSPhys. 

» read more


The ARC Linkage Projects 2021 (LP21) Assessment Round 2 is now open

If you are planning to submit an LP21 application in this Round, please email us your Notice of Intent (NoI).

» read more


STEM Guest Lecture Series

STEM guest lecture series comprised of masterclasses delivered by leading ANU academic experts and researchers.

» read more


Registration and Abstract submission is now open for the 14th Edoardo Amaldi Conference on Gravitational Waves (Amaldi14).

If you have any questions please email


From Previous Weeks...

2021-22 Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships Competition


Physics @ ANU



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