Professor Tony Thomas is SA Scientist of the Year

Saturday, 9 August 2014

University of Adelaide leading particle physicist Professor Anthony (Tony) Thomas is South Australian Scientist of the Year for 2014.

Announced last night as part of the Science Excellence Awards, Professor Thomas is Australian Laureate Fellow and Elder Professor of Physics in the University's School of Chemistry and Physics.

He heads both the ARC Centre of Excellence for Particle Physics at the Terascale at the University of Adelaide and the ARC Special Research Centre for the Subatomic Structure of Matter.

Professor Anthony Thomas aims to unravel the rich and complex structure of subatomic matter, which remains one of the great challenges in physics.

His research uses a unique approach of connecting experiment, theory, advanced computations and simulation that impact on fundamental questions about the nature of our universe, financial markets, atmospheric and climate studies.

Using his extensive international collaborative networks, Professor Thomas has created a globally visible program at the forefront of subatomic physics that has put South Australia in the middle of a major international scientific endeavour.

The University of Adelaide also had three other winners out of the nine categories in this year's Awards. They are:

Dr Kathleen Pishas (School of Medicine): PhD Research Excellence - Health and Medical Sciences

Dr Kathleen Pishas' research aims to discover new therapeutic avenues for the targeted treatment of sarcomas - a cancer affecting the solid bone and soft tissue. The result from Dr Pishas' work is already changing clinical trials for new drugs to treat this little known cancer.

Dr Sarah Catalano (School of Earth and Environmental Sciences): PhD Research Excellence - Life and Environmental Sciences

Dr Sarah Catalano's research has discovered and described 10 new parasite species from Australian waters known as dicyemid mesozoans. Her approach of using parasites as tags may guide future conservation efforts to maintain species diversity in our waters.

Dr Cristian Birzer (School of Mechanical Engineering): Early Career Researcher -Tall Poppy of the Year

Dr Cristian Birzer's research involves taking the complex science of combustion and fluid mechanics, plus the creativity of engineering, to develop affordable solutions to reduce harmful emissions from solid fuels such as dung and wood. Dr Birzer's group is also examining affordable solutions to treat pathogens in water.


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Ms Robyn Mills
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The University of Adelaide
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