[ASC-list] Little g, the Roulettes and roller coasters – physics in March

Niall Byrne niall at scienceinpublic.com.au
Tue Mar 5 22:41:17 UTC 2013

Dear ASCers,
We put together a bulletin of physics news and events every month on behalf of the President of the Australian Institute of Physics. Here’s a taste of what’s in this month's bulletin.
You can view the full bulletin online here<http://www.scienceinpublic.com.au/bulletins/aip-presidents-blog/march-201>.

Kind regards,


>From Rob Robinson, President of the Australian Institute of Physics

Australia’s 2011 physics Nobel Laureate, Professor Brian Schmidt, launched the AIP’s national physics experiment on Friday in Melbourne.
Brian introduced Year 9 students at Albert Park College, Melbourne, to a classic experiment first performed by Galileo. Together they made the first contributions to a new dataset that may even be able to tell you where in Australia you should go if you want to weigh less.
As you might recall, the experiment is called ‘The BIG little g project’ and is open to people around Australia to participate.
In other news, we are considering lodging a bid to host the 13th Asia-Pacific Physics Conference here in Australia in 2016. The triennial meetings are dedicated to the presentation and discussion of the latest developments and ideas in physics and related science in the Asia-Pacific physics communities.
This year’s 12th Asia-Pacific Physics Conference is on between 14 and 19 July, in Chiba, Japan, close to Narita Airport. Quantum physicist Professor Michelle Simmons from the University of New South Wales will give an invited talk on “The World’s Smallest Transistors”.
Vice-President Warrick Couch, Immediate Past President Marc Duldig and I will also attend. It would be great to have a strong Australian contingent at this meeting to represent broad range of physics we do here. For conference details, see http://www.jps.or.jp/APPC12/
Incidentally I have just returned from a trip to Japan, serving on a committee for the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex in Tokai. I also visited the National Institute for Materials Science in Tsukuba, Japan’s “Science City”, for the second time.
Another event coming up in July is the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering’s Nuclear Energy Conference at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney on the 25th and 26th. Titled “Nuclear energy for Australia?”, the conference is a must if you’re interested in the debate about Australia’s energy options. Registrations are open. See below for more details.
Now back to this month: Fred Watson will continue to launch his newly released book, Star-Craving Mad – Tales from a Travelling Astronomer. There are launches coming up in cities and regional cities across New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. The book is a light-hearted yet informative story of humankind's growing understanding of the Universe.
In science prizes, nominations open on the 18 March for the 2013 L’Oréal Australia and New Zealand For Women in Science Fellowships.
These $25,000 fellowships are awarded to three women scientists no more than five years post-PhD, although allowances are made for maternity leave.
And nominations for Fresh Science have been extended to Thursday 7 March at 5pm.
If you know any early-career researchers who have made a discovery and want to practise talking about it to the media and the public, encourage them to nominate for Fresh Science 2013.
Entries close this month for the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science, which includes the Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physics as well as the overall science prize and prizes for teachers.
There are also Australian Academy of Science and National Measurement Institute awards available to physicists and nominations are still open for the AIP’s 2013 Women in Physics lecturer.
Details of all these are below.
Since my last bulletin, the Prime Minister has of course announced that the next election will be on 14 September. It will be interesting to see what the various political parties propose regarding science. I encourage all AIP members to engage with their local candidates, regarding matters important to physics, or regarding policy matters that have a strong scientific underpinning.
Also in this bulletin: Nobel Laureate Brian Schmidt to offer free astronomy classes.
Rob Robinson
President, Australian Institute of Physics
aip_president at aip.org.au<mailto:aip_president at aip.org.au>


Niall Byrne

Creative Director
Science in Public
82 Hudsons Road, Spotswood  Vic  3015
PO Box 2076 Spotswood VIC 3015
03 9398 1416, 0417 131 977

niall at scienceinpublic.com.au<mailto:niall at scienceinpublic.com.au>
Twitter @scienceinpublic
Full contact details at www.scienceinpublic.com.au<http://www.scienceinpublic.com.au>
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