New space agency a boost for future science careers and research

Blazars are a type of active galaxy with one of its jets pointing toward us. In this artistic rendering, a blazar emits both neutrinos and gamma rays that could be detected by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory as well as by other telescopes on Earth and in space. Credit: IceCube/NASA

Blazar emitting neutrinos and gamma rays that can be detected by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory as well as by other telescopes on Earth and in space. Credit: IceCube/NASA


Australia’s new national space agency in Adelaide will provide greater career opportunities for science and physics graduates, as well as further opportunities for key scientific research collaborations.

It is anticipated that the new agency will give Australia access to the $US345 billion global space industry and lead to the creation of up to 20,000 jobs by 2030.

With our School of Physical Sciences at the forefront of related research including high energy astrophysics, extreme astronomy and space and atmospheric physics, Head of School Professor Sandy Steacy said the University of Adelaide is delivering the expertise necessary to grow Australia’s space industry.

“Choosing to study space science and astrophysics at the University of Adelaide is very timely,” she said.

“Not only will the agency be located right next door to the University campus where our students study and our world-leading researchers are based, but there will also be exciting opportunities to interact with industry, start-ups and space technology enterprises.”

Astrophysics observatory image

Dr Paddy McGee of the University of Adelaide High-energy Astrophysics Group, with students in the on-campus observatory.

Be better prepared with these science and physics degrees

Our three-year Bachelor of Science (Space Science and Astrophysics) degree focuses on astronomy and space science with a strong foundation in physics. There’s also flexibility for students to supplement learning with a choice of other science subjects, geoscience and mathematical based work.

Our Bachelor of Science in High Performance Computational Physics develops advanced computational and mathematical skills that enable graduates to pursue a wide range of careers including in the space industry.

Our Bachelor of Science and Entrepreneurship also provides a pathway into space careers through a mix of technical innovation, practical experience and theoretical knowledge. The degree allows students to choose a major which best aligns to their career goals while also developing the skills required to develop and grow business opportunities.

Professor Steacy said she is looking forward to creating even more opportunities for future students.
“We are excited about the possibilities a dedicated space industry for Australia will offer aspiring space entrepreneurs and scientists in this industry of the future,” she said.

"The University will be working closely with employers to prepare graduates for these careers."


Physics & Space Science degrees


Areas of expertise

The University of Adelaide has had a long and successful involvement in the fields of space, astrophysics and physical sciences, dating back more than 50 years.

In fact, the University is one of only three universities in the world to be involved with the Nobel Prize winning discovery of gravitational waves, the Higgs boson and high-energy neutrinos from an active galaxy. University of Adelaide students were part of all three projects.

School of Physical Sciences researchers will be able to provide expertise to the space agency in the areas of:

  • Advanced materials
  • Data analytics and advanced mathematics
  • Energy detection and astronomy – gravitational waves, neutrinos, gamma rays
  • Energy generation and storage
  • Remote sensing
  • Space chemistry
  • Space object detection and star tracking

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