The Good News

Saturday 4 September 2021

CZI awards $340,000 to advance genomics software that enabled COVID-19 vaccines

Dr Minh Bui's open source software for phylogenomic inference was downloaded more than 50,000 times in 2020. The data it produced contributed directly the identification of variants and the development of the COVID-19 vaccines. This week, the Chan Zuckerberg Institute announced $340,000 in new funding for the project.

Dr Niraj Lai shortlisted for ”Oscars of Australian science"

Passionate science communicator Dr Niraj Lal is in the running for the Eureka Prize for Promoting Understanding of Science, known as the ”Oscars of Australian science.” He has appeared on popular TV programs, hosts an ABC podcast, and has even written his own children's book about gravity -- Henry the Flying Emu. 

PhD research spurs international race for 6G Terahertz band communications

Dr Nan Yang and PhD candidate Akram Shafie have published new research that suggests the path to 6G wireless communications will employ the terahertz band (0.1-10 terahertz). Target speeds would be 20 times faster than 5G, bringing scenes out science fiction movies, such as holographic telepresence, into everyday human experience.

TechNOW podcast featuring Prof Lachlan Blackhall and Dr Elizabeth Ratnam

Dr Elizabeth Ratnam and Associate Professor Lachlan Blackhall appeared recently on the TechNOW podcast to talk about a revolutionary new way to monitor power flow through electricity grids. TechNOW is a podcast about Australian innovations that are shaping the future. 

Shifting gears to reduce transport emissions

Bennett Schneider, Master of Energy Change and a Bachelor of Engineering graduate, explains why the uptake of electric vehicles in Australia has been slow, despite the country’s love for solar power – and how it can change through policy action. ​ 

AI can explain your taste in music

CECS PhD candidate Jessica Sharmin Rahman was embarrassed to find that she liked Justin Beiber's music, so she built an AI system to figure out why. Jessica's presentation of her work won the People’s choice award at 2020 ANU Three minute thesis final. Now, she has authored a new piece for ABC Science to explain her findings.

Dr Penny Kyburz has been awarded HDR Supervisor of the Month

Dr Penny Kyburz of the School of Computing was awarded the “ANU HDR Supervisor of the Month” for August 2021. Nominations made it clear that she found the right balance between offering advice and support while helping HDRs develop confidence in their own abilities. Congratulations! 

Finding ways to recycle medical waste

Australian hospitals incinerate thousands of tonnes of medical waste each year — and COVID-19 has supercharged the problem. Capstone engineering students are joining forces with private industry to recycle it instead.


ANU report out now

ANU Reporter

The new edition of ANU Reporter is online now. This issue highlights ANU scholars and graduates working to increase representation, force change and drive better outcomes for all. It includes a profile on College researcher Associate Professor Catherine Ball and a feature on a CECS alumna/donor Kim Jackson.

PhD candidate’s cyber research rapidly circling the globe

School of Computing PhD candidate Adrian Herrera’s cybersecurity research was presented at a conference in mid-July and is already being incorporated into the industry’s preferred bug-finding tool. 

ANU scientists set a new record with bifacial solar cells

Scientists at The Australian National University (ANU) have produced a more efficient type of solar cell, using laser processing and setting a new world record in the process. The solar cells are dual-sided, meaning both the front and back generate power - which can contribute up to additional 30 per cent power generation. The research is also featured in PV Magazine.

ANU Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program Newsletter

The Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program newsletter offers the latest on the new Distributed Energy Resources Laboratory (DERlab), a report on the South Coast microgrid project, and more.

Video: What does Cybernetics mean to you?

The team at the ANU School of Cybernetics shares why they think Cybernetics matter, and how it can be a blueprint for the future. The new video highlights insights and perspectives of the discipline.

Fast pivot for ANU Open Day 2021

Thousands of visitors were expected for the annual on-campus event. The ACT had not seen a locally-acquired case of COVID-19 in more than a year. But less than 48 hours before Open Day was to begin, a positive test was confirmed, Canberra entered lockdown, and it was pivot time on our campus once again.

Read more about the College's shift to a virtual Open Day and to hybrid learning in the classroom. And see the on-demand videos and other content offered to our virtual guests.

Solar Racing offers welcoming message for prospective students

Had Open Day gone forward as planned, a video featuring ANU Solar Racing would have been looped on a wide-screen monitor next to the School of Engineering both. When the lockdown was announced, team member Aiden Matson penned an Open Day essay welcoming prospective students to virtual Open Day, and sharing how his own decision to study at ANU was influenced by his interest in solar racing. 

Watch our July 2021 graduation video

Our July 2021 CECS graduation video is complete, starring our newest alumni. Please watch and share the video and read about the winners of our photo/video contest. When asked how he would spend his $100 prize for "Best photo involving a large inflatable duck", Zhipeng Li talked about missing his parents who he has not seen in a year and a half due to the pandemic. "I am going to use the prize money to buy presents for them," he said. 

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What governments can do about QAnon believers

Policymakers and community leaders will have to engage with the ideology underlying conspiracy theories and help believers feel safe and included if they hope to contain their volatile behaviour, writes James Mortensen of the School of Computing in wake of the deadly Capitol Riots in the United States.

Contactless and spatially resolved determination of current−voltage curves in perovskite solar cells via photoluminescence

Daniel Macdonald and Hieu T. Nguyen of the School of Computing, in collaboration with ANU colleagues, have published new research on a fast, non-invasive, camera-based method to image pseudo current density voltage curves of various perovskite-based structures from partially finished to finished cells with micron-scale spatial resolution.

Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing