MAY 2014


Friday 30 May

Over 40 Honours, Masters and PhD graduands, their family and friends will attend the 30 May graduation ceremony in the Great Hall starting at 9:30am. Academic staff are encouraged to participate in the academic procession and are asked to meet in the Senate Room, Main Quadrangle by 9:15am.

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Prizes & Scholarships Ceremony

On 16 May, the annual School of Physics Prizes & Scholarships Ceremony was held in Maclaurin Hall. Over 45 high performing students from Junior Physics level through to Honours and PhD were awarded prize cheques and certificates.

The Dean, Professor Trevor Hambley; Head of School, Professor Tim Bedding; Jan King, School benefactor; and Dr Graeme Melville, Australian Institute of Physics (NSW Chapter), were in attendance to present the awards.

Photo: Jan King presents the Malcolm Turki Memorial Scholarship to
Dale Grant.

Australian Academy of Science

Professor Harry Messel AC CBE, has been awarded one of the Australian Academy of Science's highest honours, the Academy Medal. The former Head of the School of Physics and long-time science advocate has been awarded the Medal in recognition of his 'conspicuous and enduring service' to the cause of science in Australia. The medal will be awarded during Science at the Shine Dome, the Academy's annual celebration of science and research, on 28 May.

Professor Walter Stibbs Lecture

Professor Fulvio Melia, University of Arizona, gave the annual Professor Walter Stibbs Lecture on 15 May at the Sydney Law School on Cracking the Einstein Code.

For full details on these and other stories, please see the Latest News page.

If you have a newsworthy announcement, please contact Tom Gordon.

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Staff arrivals & departures

The School of Physics welcomes the following new staff members who have joined us:
  • Dr Prabhjot Juneja, Medical Physics
  • Dr Clara Tran, Applied Physics
  • Michael Cragg, Applied Physics

Bob Shobbrook (1937-2014)

We are sorry to report that Bob Shobbrook, a former staff member of the School, passed away on 23 May.  Bob joined the School in 1966 and was a member of the Chatterton Astronomy Department until his retirement in 1994. Bob's research focussed on photometry and spectroscopy of hot stars.  After his retirement he continued to be a regular observer on the smaller telescopes at Siding Spring Observatory, doing photometry of variable stars.  Bob is survived by his wife Robyn, herself very well known in the astronomy community as the AAO librarian for 20 years.

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The AIN-Physics Building

Besides providing a pleasant outlook and natural setback, the AIN green roof also covers the entire length of the cleanroom, the two electron microscope suites, a double height type A lab and plant space. These are some of the most sensitive areas in the AIN and it is critical that the green roof is waterproof. The building designers have addressed this in a number of ways, the first of which is to pour a continous slab of concrete with no joints. This was achieved recently when well over a 100 concrete trucks arrived on site over a 12 hour period.  The building contractor reported that the pour went exceptionally well and that there were no "cold joints", which can occur if one batch of concrete dries before another new batch arrives. Since then, the slab has now been "post tensioned" which will also help to produce a waterproof structure. Finally, with the aid of a natural "fall" to divert water away from the building and a waterproof membrane, the goal of producing a waterproof structure should be achieved. However, the real test will be when we get one of those 1 in a 100 year downpours, which seem to have been occurring quite frequently in recent years!

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Sydney Student

Release 3 of the Sydney Student Program (SSP) will go-live on 7 July. Teaching coordinators attended a special Teaching & Learning Committee meeting on 22 May to hear Sarah Masters, SSP Implementation Coordinator, give an overview of the hard deadlines for semester 1 results processing, replacement assessments and new research enrolment periods.

Booking Systems

A reminder that the School Booking system is now in place to self-book the following rooms and resources:
  • School Vehicles
  • Conference Phone
  • Data Projector
  • Carslaw Computational Lab 177
  • Foundation Room 208
  • Tutorial Room 414A
  • Tea Room
  • Rosehill Street Boardroom
  • Parking Permit
The Web Helpdesk should be used for HR, Finance, building and cleaning issues, Cab Charge and Parking Vouchers, Key Requests and Security Access requests.

For IT support and information, please refer to the Physics IT support website.

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