The Australian National University

Event Horizon

Research School of Physics


Weekly newsletter | vol 48 no 4 | 30 January–3 February 2023


Director's Message

Dear Colleagues,

After a relaxing summer break it’s wonderful to be back and hear of other holiday adventures. I’m glad many had the chance for some down time over summer.

My thanks to those who supervised and supported the Summer Research Scholars this year (above). By all accounts they had a superb experience, also forging new friendships. This is an important program and I’m so glad to see it bounce back as strong as ever. My thanks also to Dr AJ Mitchell (NPAA) and Luda Mangos and Siobhan Ryman (HDR/PEC Admin) for their coordination and pastoral care of the Scholars.

I am grateful to A/Prof David Pulford (QST/DSTG) for championing the ACT Schools Science Mentor program run by the ACT Dept of Education. They are currently looking for projects/mentors in Quantum mechanics, Engineering/robotics, Computer science/coding, Mathematics. The program runs across the Secondary School years 9-12. If you would like to join this excellent program please contact David. An article about the program can be seen on their site, where some people will recognise a long standing friend to Physics, Prof John Rayner, who happens to be still teaching.

Phil Dooley has recently posted some lovely articles on our website. Most recently, his interview with Prof Dragomir Neshev (TMOS/EME) showcases Dragomir's invited review of the technological juncture meta-optical materials promise industry in the very near term. Published in Nature Photonics with long standing colleague, Prof Andrey Miroshnichenko (UNSW), this review has already received much attention. My congratulations to Dragomir and Andrey, and the TMOS team.

My belated congratulations to Ivan Toftul (FTP) for winning not one, not two, but three prizes at the Koala student conference last year. Two were in the photography competition (see below), and one for the best poster for peoples’ choice.

And, in my inbox today was a very interesting article from Physics Today.  It draws light on citation biases and it occurs to me this is a topic we can all consider.  I’ll bring this to the Equity & Diversity Committee when we next meet.  

Have a great week,


Windows 8.1 End Of Life

It is that time again. Windows 8.1 has now reached end of life and is no longer getting security updates from Microsoft. We need to work to remove all Windows 8.1 (and earlier) machines from our network, either through upgrading to Windows 10 or locking out the network ports.

If you know of any Windows 8.1 machines in the school please let us know at so that we can assist you with the process.


RSB Director’s Seminar Series - Mon 13th Feb

Blood and Guts: Malaria Parasite Entry and Transmission
Professor Wai-Hong Tham

Date: Mon 13 Feb 2023
Time: 12.30pm 
Location: Eucalyptus Seminar Room, Level 2, RN Robertson Building 46 or Join the Webinar

Register here

» read more


AISRF (Round 15) Scheme - Now Open

Please contact the Research Office by 13 February 2023 if you have an interest in applying. Notifying the Research Office of your intention to apply is essential, as there is a cap of two applications per institution, and a ranking process will need to be put in place.

For further information please see here.


Mie Voids: Guiding Light In Air

Mie theory is a priceless legacy from Gustav Mie, which still allows us to learn something new about nanophotonic devices that support Mie resonances. However, the Mie resonances can be studied for low-index material structures embedded in high-index surrounding media. Such “Mie voids” introduce a novel concept, and the recently developed theory allows to analyse the resonant behaviour of such inverse structures as observed experimentally, said Dr. Kirill Koshelev, one of the key authors of the paper reporting this research in 

» read more


NHMRC Investigator Grants Scheme

The Grant Guidelines for funding in 2024 for the NHMRC Investigator Grants scheme have been released. This scheme provides the highest-performing health and medical researchers (biomedical, clinical, public health and health services research) at all career stages with funding for their salary (if required) and a research support package (RSP) for five years.

If you are interested in applying to this scheme and have not submitted an NoI previously, please contact us as soon as possible at so that that we can provide you with access to support and resources as soon as they become available. 

» read more


W*iPAE Dress for STEM - Photo Competition

International Day of Women and Girls in Science
To show support for Women* in Science the WiPAE group want to see you working (it) in your purple! A $200 prize will be awarded for the best group photo of you and your purple crew hard at work. Open to all CECS, RSPhys, and RSAA

Please submit entries by 3pm, 10th February.


Singapore NRF Fellowship - Class Of 2024

The Singapore NRF Fellowship scheme provides opportunities for early career researchers from all over the world to lead impactful research in Singapore. The scheme offers a research grant of up to SGD 2.5 million over 5 years (in addition to 30% general overheads), with freedom to lead ground-breaking research in a host institution of choice in Singapore.

» read more


L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women In Science Fellowships

Applications for the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Australian & New Zealand Fellowships are now OPEN, closing on Monday 6 March 2023. Five $25,000 fellowships will be awarded, please 'read more' for further infomation. 

Please contact the college research office ASAP if you intend to apply.

» read more




» read more


Staff Movements

Lan Fu will be away 23/12/22 - 06/02/23
Andrew Stuchbery will be away from 19/12/22 - 31/1/23


2023 Wall Planners

2023 wall planners are available now at the Physics Store.


Need to Edit a Requistion?

If you are new or old to the RSPhys online requisition system, 'read more' for time saving tips when editing a requisition with a mistake.

» read more




Departmental seminars

Ms Emily Rose Rees - 31 January
Laser Frequency Stabilisation for Space Based Interferometry
» read more


School Seminar Program - 14 February

Nuclear spin dynamics in porous engineering systems - Dr Neil Robinson

» read more


2023 State of the University Address - 2 February

Thursday 2 February, 10-11am, followed by morning tea

» read more


Know your administrators...

L-R: Belinda Barbour, Sonia Padrun, Petra Rickman, Nikki Azzopardi, & Julie Arnold

» read more


Know your School team...

Uyen Nguyen -
Finance Team Leader

Sue Berkeley -
Stores/Purchasing Team Leader

Goran Radovanovic -
Stores Services  

Patrick Romero - Stores/Purchasing Services 

Mim Ellen-Barwell - Stores/Purchasing Services


Know your student admin...

Liudmila (Luda) Mangos -
Higher Degree Research admin
C3.02C, Cockcroft bldg (Thurs 9:30-5pm)

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


Know your school team...

Phil Dooley -
Manager, Marketing and Communications (part time)
0414 945 577


What To Do If You Test Positive For COVID-19

If you test positive to COVID-19, please:

1. Register your positive result with ACT Health using this online form, or with the state/territory health authority where you are located.

2. Alert the University through this online form.

3. Inform your supervisor or course convenor.

» read more


Physics @ ANU


Birefringence. You see random cuts of tape stuck on the screen in the shape of a heart through a linear polarizer. Plastic molecules are elongated thus tape exhibit birefringence properties. Ordinary and extraordinary rays may exit plastic in phase or out phase depending on frequency and thickness resulting in a colourful image. - Photograph by Ivan Toftul



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