Centre for Astrophysics

University of Southern Queensland
Director_Brad_Carter

Welcome to the USQ Centre for Astrophysics

The Centre for Astrophysics is a part of USQ’s Institute for Advanced Engineering and Space Sciences, and our academic staff belong to the USQ School of Sciences.

Our purpose is astronomical and space research and development that delivers excellence in research outputs, graduate outcomes, funding success, and technological innovation. Our vision is research of the highest international standard, and our performance is top rated as “well above world standard” by the Australian Research Council. Our mission is to serve Australian astronomy and space priorities in research and research training, in areas that include observational astronomy, astrophysics, planetary science, space science, computing and technology, and through collaboration with academe, industry, and government.

We hope you enjoy exploring this website and feel free to get in touch.

 

Prof Brad Carter

Director, on behalf of the team

Our Research

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USQ astrophysics is advancing our understanding of the shared evolution of stars and their planetary systems, and the implications for planetary habitability. We study stellar activity by imaging stars and their magnetic fields using spectra observed in polarised light. We discover, monitor, characterise and model exoplanets orbiting stars other than the Sun, and operate Mt Kent Observatory, a key remote-access southern hemisphere follow-up facility for NASA’s latest exoplanet space telescope. We model the orbital dynamics of planetary systems, using high-performance computing. We collaborate on major national and international stellar surveys, instrumentation development, space debris and meteor tracking, space telescope missions, and on the space industry applications of astronomy.

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Study Astrophysics

Undergraduate, postgraduate, and higher degree by research options with USQ Centre for Astrophysics

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Outreach

Learn more about the outreach activities conducted by the Centre for Astrophysics

In the Spotlight

Mt Kent Observatory

USQ operates Mt Kent Observatory in Queensland, Australia. The site hosts telescopes for the Shared Skies Partnership with the University of Louisville, the MINERVA-Australis telescope array and spectrograph providing ground-based support for NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), the Australian node of the Stellar Observations Network Group (SONG) asteroseismology network, the Australian node of the DLR SMARTnet space debris tracking network, and the local node of the Global Fireball Observatory. Mt Kent Observatory has an asteroid named after it – discovered in 1993, asteroid ‘11927 Mount Kent’ appears among the ecliptic constellations. Please note that as a university research facility Mt Kent Observatory is not open to the public, but USQ Events and the School of Sciences includes astronomy in their outreach activities.