Six ANU researchers elected to the Australian Academy of Science

Publication date
Thursday, 23 May 2024

Six extraordinary researchers from The Australian National University (ANU) have been acknowledged for their outstanding contribution to science.

Professor Kylie Catchpole, Professor Nerilie Abram, Professor Andrew Blakers, Professor Hrvoje Tkalčić, Professor Mark Krumholz and Professor Shahar Mendelson have been elected Fellows of the Australian Academy of Science.

Each of these researchers, elected by their peers, are among the most distinguished scientists in Australia.

Composite image of six headshots
From top left: Professor Catchpole, Professor Abram, Professor Tkalčić, Professor Blakers, Professor Krumholz and Professor Mendelson.

Professor Catchpole’s work focuses on next generation technologies that will accelerate the efficiency and development of solar energy.

“We are at the beginning of the biggest transition in the way we use energy since the industrial revolution,” Professor Catchpole said.

“We need to design future energy systems that are affordable, decarbonised, resilient to extreme events, and fair to consumers.”

Professor Nerilie Abram’s multidisciplinary approach to understanding the behaviour of Earth’s climate system has changed the way we think about human-induced climate change.

She is working with natural recorders of the Earth’s climate, including Antarctic ice layers and tropical coral skeletons, to build a more complete understanding of our climate.

“Through science, I’ve been able to turn my wonder for the natural world into a career that has taken me to spectacular places and gives me a sense of purpose in helping the world respond to climate change,” Professor Abram said.

Professor Hrvoje Tkalčić has helped us better understand the Earth’s interior, especially the inner core. His research also uses global seismology and mathematic geophysics tools to improve our knowledge of the internal structure of other planets, too.

“Australia’s national interest extends beyond our national borders and our own planet’s boundaries,” Professor Tkalčić said.

“Our children will inherit a world where Australia’s expertise in global and planetary geophysics unlocks resources and confronts global challenges.”

Professor Andrew Blakers’ valuable contributions to solar energy and helping the global economy decarbonise have also been recognised.

Astrophysicist Professor Mark Krumholz is a world leader in the study of star formation. He has contributed to our understanding of the mechanisms that control the rates at which galaxies form stars, and the way stars cluster in space and time.

Professor Shahar Mendelson’s work has led to ground-breaking progress in the field of theoretical data science. He has used his discoveries to solve fundamental questions in machine learning, signal processing and statistics.

Other ANU experts have also recently been honoured by the Academy. Dr Mirindi Eric Dusenge and Dr Emily Roycroft received the J G Russell Award, which supports younger researchers in science.

Professor Joan Leach, Dr Ed Simpson and Dr Rod Lamberts were appointed to an Advisory Panel to assist the Academy in developing a decade-long plan that will illustrate how science can progress the interests and ambitions of our nation.

The full details of the 2024 Australian Academy of Science Fellows are available on the Australian Academy Science website.

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