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HeadStartSwiss: early career opportunities to study or work in Switzerland

Early career researchers and young professionals are invited to apply to undertake study, work experience and/or research in Switzerland, through the following programs:

  • Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships – for doctoral and postdoctoral candidates, as well as candidates wishing to undertake research in the realm of their PhD or medical specialisation. Open now.
  • Mertz Fellowship – for early-career researchers from the polar and high-altitude science fields. Now closed.
  • Young Professionals Programme – for Australian citizens aged 20-30 who have completed vocational training (apprenticeship or university degree) now working in the profession in which they trained. Open for applications year-round.
  • ThinkSwiss program for students who have completed their second year of under-graduate studies or are currently enrolled in a post-graduate (Master’s) degree. Open now.

Hear from past scholars below:

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Prizes, awards and opportunities

  • Nominate your top scientists, science communicators, and research leaders for one of 18 Eureka Prizes. Nominations open until 14 April.
  • ATSE awards are open until 29 May, for excellence in technology, applied science and engineering.
  • Look out for the ABC Top 5 Media Residency Program, opening soon. For early-career researchers across science, arts and humanities with a flair and passion for communicating their work.

More on each below.

If you need support with planning and editing your nominations, we can help.

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Wow, wow, wow. Galaxies collide and tumble in a cosmic dance: Webb reactions

Aussie astronomers react to NASA Webb first images.

Media contacts: Niall Byrne, niall@scienceinpublic.com.au, or
Jane Watkins, jane@scienceinpublic.com.au,

Nearly 40 researchers across Australia are eagerly awaiting data from Webb for their projects. Many of them are available to talk on Tuesday about what they hope to see with Webb and about their reaction to the first pictures

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President Biden to release first pics from the $US10 billion James Webb Space Telescope Tuesday 12 July, 7.30 am AEST

What will Australians see with Webb?

Aussie astronomers available for interviews in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Canberra.

They’re using Webb to look for the first stars, the first galaxies, baby planets, massive black holes.

Media contacts: Niall Byrne, niall@scienceinpublic.com.au, 0417-131-977 or
Jane Watkins, jane@scienceinpublic.com.au, 0425 803 204

Over the past 30 years, Hubble has transformed science and culture, revealing a Universe of 200 billion galaxies. Webb will see further, solving today’s mysteries and creating new ones.

Image of galaxy cluster SMACS 0723, known as Webb’s First Deep Field, taken by the James Webb Space Telescope. Courtesy of NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute.

On Tuesday morning Joe Biden will release ‘the first picture’ then NASA will release a suite of images early Wednesday morning from the James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to Hubble.

Nearly 40 researchers across Australia are eagerly awaiting data from web for their projects. Many of them are available to talk on Tuesday about what they hope to see with Webb and about their reaction to the first pictures.

Much of the Webb data is flowing back to Earth through Tidbinbilla, and some comes from an instrument designed by Peter Tuthill at the University of Sydney. He is relieved and excited. “This is a day I have been looking forward to for a big part of my career. Everything about the Webb is so over-the-top audacious – from the titanic articulated mirror down to its orbit out in the cold voids of interplanetary space.”

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First James Webb pictures – comments from Australian users

Professor Karl Glazebrook, Swinburne University/ASTRO 3D

Dr. Elisabete da Cunha, UWA/ICRAR/ASTRO 3D

Dr Nicha Leethochawalit, University of Melbourne/ ASTRO 3D,

Dr. Kathryn Grasha, ANU/ASTRO 3D

Professor Peter Tuthill, University of Sydney

Dr Benjamin Pope, University of Queensland

Professor James Miller-Jones, Curtin University

Dr Christophe Pinte, Monash University, Melbourne

Professor Simon Driver, UWA, Perth

Associate Professor Kim-Vy Tran, Astrophysicist, UNSW

Professor Orsola De Marco, Macquarie University

Tidbinbilla (Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex)

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Scent of life on Venus

Artist’s impression of Venus, with an inset showing a representation of the phosphine molecules detected in the high cloud decks.
Credit: ESO / M. Kornmesser / L. Calçada & NASA / JPL / Caltech

Microbial life may be present in the atmosphere of Venus, according to a paper published in Nature Astronomy today.

(Written by Rohan Byrne, our resident geoscientist. Follow him at @buildmeaplanet)

Traces of a telltale gas called phosphine have been detected in sunlight bouncing off the planet. The gas, a rare chemical sometimes used as a pesticide, has never before been observed on rocky planets other than Earth, where it is almost always a product of life.

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