University expands strategic partnership with ANSTO

17 April 2019
The University has signed a Strategic Relationship Umbrella Agreement with ANSTO, one of Australia's largest public nuclear science and technology research organisations and the only nuclear research organisation.
The University of Sydney and ANSTO sign new partnership agreement

University of Sydney Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Duncan Ivison with ANSTO's Head of Research Infrastructure Dr Miles Apperley.

The University of Sydney and ANSTO have signed a strategic agreement to replace a long-standing MoU and set the relationship between the two organisations into the future.

In addition to the many successful research collaborations already underway including in medical imaging to improve human health, as well as discovery research across the domains of chemistry, drug discovery, materials science, engineering, cultural heritage and nuclear physics, some of the future activities that will benefit from the agreement include:

  • a jointly funded academic research position with the School of Civil Engineering
  • a jointly funded postdoctoral research fellowship
  • continued partnership in the form of a joint node of the National Imaging Facility through the operation of the National Cyclotron Research Facility and PET imaging facilities within the University’s Brain and Mind Centre
  • a commitment to establish next generation PET molecular imaging capability with core research facility, Sydney Imaging for pre-clinical as well as human research.

“The renewal of this longstanding partnership with the University of Sydney re-affirms our great confidence in collaborative initiatives related to research and infrastructure that draw on our combined expertise,” said Dr Miles Apperley, Head of Research Infrastructure at ANSTO.

“We are continuing to build and invest in our relationship with the University, with a range of strategic initiatives and partnerships to come including the operation of national pre-clinical imaging and radiochemistry capability through the National Imaging Facility, a national total body PET imaging and joint funding of academic and research staff.

“More than 50 University of Sydney researchers annually use our landmark and national research infrastructures contributing to the University’s significant research excellence. We hope this agreement will encourage more will come.”

Some of the many collaborative projects include:

  • The development of a world-first imaging system to investigate the causes and potential treatments for mental illness and diabetes.
  • Sydney Analytical and Sydney University Museums' collaboration with experts such as medical scientists and illustrators from several institutions on the Mummy Project, making astonishing discoveries concerning age, sex, biology, genetics, diet, disease and processes of mummification. 
  • Research on dinosaur bones using neutron and X-ray techniques and combining these with our vibrational spectroscopic techniques to provide unprecedented information on not only bone structure and how it relates to modern species, but also in some cases, how they lived. 

“The continuation of this relationship ensures that we can give our researchers access to some of the best research infrastructure in the world,” said Professor Laurent Rivory, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research).

"We look forward to continued success with our ANSTO colleagues and the ongoing benefits this collaboration will bring to our community."


ANSTO is Australia’s national nuclear research organisation, with capabilities in nuclear science and technology. At the heart of ANSTO’s research capabilities are the state-of-the-art OPAL reactor, which is one of the world’s most effective multi-purpose reactors and the Australian Synchrotron, a world-class research facility that uses accelerator technology. ANSTO’s vision is to deliver excellence in innovation, and discovery through its people, partnerships, nuclear expertise and landmark infrastructure.

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