Science Matters is the Faculty of Science's Newsroom

We hope that through this medium alumni, staff, students and supporters will be able to keep in touch with what is happening in the Faculty Science at UWA.

These are exciting times for the Faculty of Science and we hope you will be able to share in this excitement and that you will be able to follow where we go over the next few years.

Professor Tony O'Donnell, Dean

Pople Supercomputer

New supercomputer for computational chemistry, biology and physics

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

The study of gravitational waves is one of a number of research areas that will benefit from ‘Pople’, a high-performance computing (HPC) cluster which is the latest addition to the Faculty of Science at The University of Western Australia.

Herbicide hunt

Common antibiotic inspires hunt for new herbicide

Friday, 12 February 2016

Plant biologists at The University of Western Australia have discovered that the commonly used antibiotic ciprofloxacin, which kills bacteria, also kills plants by blocking the DNA copying machinery of the plants.

David Blair

Gravitational waves detected 100 years after Einstein's prediction

Thursday, 11 February 2016

In a world first, scientists have observed ripples in the fabric of space-time called gravitational waves, arriving at the earth from a cataclysmic event in the distant universe. This confirms a major prediction of Albert Einstein’s 1915 general theory of relativity and opens an unprecedented new window to the cosmos.

Hidden galaxies

Scientists discover hidden galaxies behind the Milky Way

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Hundreds of hidden nearby galaxies have been studied for the first time, shedding light on a mysterious gravitational anomaly dubbed the Great Attractor.

Simrat Labana (ACIAR – New Delhi) flanked by girls who have collected weeds from

Legume production vastly improves in International Year of Pulses 2016

Thursday, 4 February 2016

A five-year project led by researchers from The University of Western Australia to improve food and nutritional security has exceeded expectations by delivering a 45% increase in lentil production over five years.

Led by Professor William Erskine from UWA’s Centre for Plant Breeding and Genetics, and Institute of Agriculture, the five-year project was funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) to revitalise pulse production in Bangladesh without affecting rice cropping.

Hot spots

UWA expert says more 'green' needed to cool Perth's suburban hotspots

Thursday, 4 February 2016

An environmental engineering expert at The University of Western Australia said ‘greening’ the suburbs of Perth will help reduce the emerging urban health crisis of heatwaves.

Shark acoustic system

New underwater acoustic system searching for sharks

Friday, 29 January 2016

A researcher from the School of Physics at The University of Western Australia has kicked off a project to test a cutting-edge acoustic system to detect sharks as they approach Perth beaches.

Research uncovers how to better manage crops grown on gravel soils

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

A study into gravel soils by researchers at The University of Western Australia may help farmers growing crops on soils with high gravel content optimise the amount of fertiliser they apply.

The glasshouse study found that the concentration of phosphorus in the matrix of gravel soils from residual and applied fertiliser had a greater effect on wheat growth, than the total amount of phosphorus in the pot.

Research into loneliness

Study reveals relationship between loneliness and psychotic disorders

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

A recent study led by The University of Western Australia and published in the Schizophrenia Research Journal has found that rates of loneliness are higher among people with a psychotic illness (such as schizophrenia, delusional disorder and depressive psychosis) than those who do not have the illness.

Protein research

$2 million boost for cancer research

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Research across Australia into how cancers begin and spread will be supported through a $2 million grant provided by the Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) to the Australian Synchrotron.

Canola

WA agricultural research shines on world stage

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

The Australian Research Council (ARC) has released a report showing West Australian universities are among the best in the world in research allied to Agriculture and Environmental Science.

Andrew and Nicola Forrest with Marisa Duong

2016 Forrest Research Scholars Announced

Monday, 7 December 2015

A karate-loving biochemistry honours student from The University of Western Australia who hopes to work towards a cure for the devastating progressive disease Duchenne muscular dystrophy is one of three recipients of the 2016 Forrest Research Foundation Scholarships.

Afira Zulkifli and Madison Roberts

Students awarded scholarships for environmental achievements

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

A scholarship that commemorates the achievements of Paul Turner in the contaminated lands consultancy community has been awarded to two science students from The University of Western Australia.

Orbicella faveolata coral

Research uncovers how some coral can survive annual bleaching events

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

A study has found that coral with high levels of fat or other energy reserves can withstand the impact of annual coral bleaching events, compared to coral with lower levels of fat reserves.

Bruce Robinson

Funding for promising vaccine to shrink tumours

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

World-leading Perth cancer researcher Professor Bruce Robinson believes his team is close to developing a vaccine to try and shrink cancerous tumours.

Colour blindness

Could colour blindness in men be an advantage?

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

A new Western Australian study aims to find out whether colour blindness in men can actually be an advantage.

Professor Peter Eastwood

$3m in health research grants may mean better sleep for all

Monday, 9 November 2015

A study which may lead to sleep apnoea being diagnosed through a simple photograph is one of three National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grants worth nearly $3 million awarded to The University of Western Australia.

Yanchep coastline

Modelling provides ways to better manage the coastline

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

An international team of scientists which included 10 researchers from The University of Western Australia has found that by using  ‘space and time scales’ in coastal modelling, authorities may be able to predict the future of our coastline and better manage it.  

Dust detector equipment

Research uncovers 'horizon glow' mystery of the moon

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Researchers from The University of Western Australia have uncovered answers to a mystery that has puzzled scientists for half a century.

astronomy

Supermoon puts spotlight on new astronomy facility

Thursday, 22 October 2015

A rare astronomical event will mark the launch of Australia’s biggest astronomy education facility at Gingin next Tuesday night.