Phd Student In Astronomy To Meet The Stars Of Science

27 May 2010

One of the brightest of the University of Sydney's PhD students, Chris Hales, is about to travel to Lindau, Germany, to meet with over 60 Nobel Laureates and 700 of the world's most promising science PhD and Post Doc students from 27 June to 3 July 2010.

Chris Hales.
Chris Hales.

Chris who is a postgraduate student with the Sydney Institute for Astronomy (SIfA), based within the School of Physics is one of fourteen students who have been selected by the Australian Academy of Science from across the nation to be part of this prestigious program, which started in 1951.

Originally the program was limited to German Nationals but the now international program sees students from all over the globe meeting with Nobel Laureates and each other discuss ideas and make contacts. "I am honoured to be chosen and it's pretty exciting to think I'll be meeting some of these inspirational people in person," says Chris.

"The celebrity suddenly thrust on Nobel Prize winners affords many of them the chance to expand their work and talents into wider society; for example, advising Governments on a wide range of issues, or developing science outreach programs that enable people to learn probabilistic reasoning and to see through widespread delusions."

Chris says it's a wonderful opportunity to be able to interact with and learn from such talented and sometimes outspoken individuals. "I'm hoping to meet with as many Laureates and other young scientists as possible."

A PhD candidate Chris is studying the as-yet unknown origin of tenuous large-scale magnetic fields that exist in galaxies like our own Milky Way. By understanding their origin, astronomers will be able to better understand the formation and evolution of stars and galaxies within the cosmic history of our Universe.

Only the students with the most promise are selected. In his understated manner Chris says that there were two steps involved to attend the program - the first one to get nominated and the second to be accepted by the Australian Academy of Science.

"The Australian Academy of Science then nominated me to the Lindau committee, who in turn independently accepted me to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting." The next step for Chris will be - "Brushing up on my German!"

Contact: Alison Muir

Phone: 02 9036 5194

Email: 165826101c375b3d335122114a20145d293a0133115e4b0a44