Australia's Chief Scientist

Nobel Laureate’s hard work pays off

The brilliant work of Nobel Laureate Brian Schmidt was supported today by the announcement that the Government would be providing an additional $1 million in support of his research over the next four years.

This money will enable Professor Schmidt to continue his role as an important ambassador for Australian Science whilst still pursuing his leadership of Australian Research Council Laureate Fellowship Project “Mining the Southern Sky” awarded in 2009.

In one of our nation’s great achievements in science, Australian astrophysicist Professor Brian Schmidt was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize for physics. It is the 12th Nobel Prize for an Australian, and the first in physics since 1915, an honour that did not escape Professor Schmidt.

Professor Schmidt shared the Nobel Prize with collaborator and friend Adam Riess of the United States, and physicist Saul Perlmutter. Their combined work studying exploding stars (supernovae) and the mysterious dark matter led to the discovery that the universe is expanding into disconnected nothingness at an accelerating rate. This will probably lead to the end of the universe in ice, a finding nothing short of groundbreaking for physicists’ world wide.

Professor Chubb was delighted to hear of the funding for Professor Schmidt’s continued work at the Australian National University.

“Brian’s achievement in winning the Nobel Prize for Physics was a great achievement and makes us all proud of what we can do in this country with the right support,” Professor Chubb said.

“Brian is also a great ambassador for Australian science. I’m really pleased to see the Government, through the ARC, supporting and encouraging Brian’s work in this way and am optimistic about the outcomes we might see as a result,” he said.

For further information on Professor Schmidt’s pioneering work, click here. You can read the official media release here.

Image: This stunning false-color picture shows off the many sides of the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI/CXC/SAO