CSIRO Postgraduate Scholarships - Astronomy and Space

Last updated 36 minutes ago
Job Type:Full Time

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CSIRO’s Postgraduate Top-Up Scholarship Program provides enhanced opportunities in science and engineering for outstanding graduates enrolling each year at Australian tertiary institutions as postgraduates for research leading to the award of a PhD. CSIRO PhD Top Up scholarships are now being offered in 40 CSIRO research areas, for funding commencing in financial year 2020-21.

PhD Top-up Scholarships are available to postgraduate students who have gained (or expect to gain), first class honours or equivalent, in relevant research areas. Students must also expect to receive a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship, or an equivalent primary scholarship, commencing in late 2020 or early 2021. Joint supervision of students by a university and a CSIRO supervisor is required and such joint supervisory arrangements must be consistent with the Higher Degree by Research Regulations of the host university. The students’ research will be co-supervised by CSIRO and university scientists.

The CSIRO Top Up Scholarships are supplementary awards, which add to the student’s support from a principal scholarship awarded by another body, e.g. Australian University RTP scholarship. In all respects recipients of awards will be regarded as students of the University at which they are registered, and all rules relating to degree candidature and the primary award will apply. In particular, recipients will undertake research at CSIRO as a student of the university concerned and will not be employees of CSIRO.

Recipients of CSIRO Supplementary Postgraduate Awards are required to be Australian citizens or permanent residents. However, in fields in which there is a national skill shortage, awards may go to overseas candidates, provided that the international candidate is prepared to seek permanent residency as soon as possible within Australian Government policy guidelines.

CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science has a long and successful history in the space sector from radio astronomy research, managing complex facilities and observing Earth from above to supporting data and manufacturing supply chains. For more information please see our website at Astronomy and space (link).

Research Project: Optical Communications in Deep Space
Location: Canberra, ACT
Scholarship: Top-up scholarship of $7,000 per annum, plus a generous operating budget of $10,000 per annum
Reference: 69042

Short explanation of research area:

CSIRO manages deep space communications with many space probes that explore the solar system by radio communications. NASA is considering the funding of a major upgrade to CSIRO's Deep Space Communications Complex (CDSCC) to use laser pulses for communications with future spacecraft. This project will use optical instruments to evaluate the atmospheric disturbances at CDSCC to determine how the atmosphere will affect optical communications there. The project will be a collaboration with Prof. Andrew Lambert of UNSW, a leading expert on atmospheric measurements in astronomy.

Contact: For more details please contact Ed Kruzins on +61 2 6201 7905 or email Ed.Kruzins@csiro.au or Stephen Gensemer on +61 8 8303 8771 or email Stephen.Gensemer@csiro.au


To be eligible to apply you must have (or expect to gain):

  • first class honours or equivalent in a relevant research area;
  • admission to an Australian University as a PhD student;
  • a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship or university equivalent; and
  • a university supervisor who is willing and able to supervise you.

The successful applicant will be required to obtain and provide a National Police Check or equivalent.

If you have already commenced your PhD studies, you must be less than 12 months into your PhD at 1 January 2021.

International applicants must have the appropriate immigration approvals to allow them to take up the scholarship. The successful applicant must be residing in Australia in order to commence their PhD and take up the CSIRO Postgraduate Top-Up Scholarship by no later than 30 June 2021.

Applications will be assessed on:

  1. Quality and relevance of student project: The primary assessment criterion for a CSIRO Postgraduate Scholarship is the quality and relevance of the project being proposed. The research must be aligned with the advertised priority research area.
  2. Academic calibre of the student: The quality of the student is also critical to the assessment of a scholarship and candidates must hold (or expect to gain) a relevant first-class honours (or equivalent) degree from a recognised university.
  3. Availability of appropriate university supervision: The relevance of the university supervisor’s research background and their willingness to supervise the student in collaboration with the CSIRO supervisor should also be made clear.

How to apply:

You will be required to:

  1. submit a Resume/CV and Cover Letter (as one document) in the ‘Resume/CV’field which includes:
    • the reasons why the research project/s you have selected are of interest to you and how your skills/knowledge meet the project requirements;
    • the names and contact details of two academic referees; and
    • an outline of your longer-term career aspirations and how this program will help you achieve them.
  2. upload your academic results in the ‘Cover Letter’ field;
  3. in the ‘Education’ section, select your university from the Educational Institute list;
  4. in the ‘Job-Specific Information’ section, section select ‘Not Applicable’ for both Preference 1 and Preference 2. You are not required to provide your Grade Point Average (GPA), please select ‘Not Applicable’.

If you experience difficulties applying online call 1300 984 220 and someone will be able to assist you. Outside business hours please email: csiro-careers@csiro.au.

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Applications close: Saturday 31 October 2020 (10.55pm AEDT)