Astronomer Dr Lee Spitler was recognised amongst New South Wales’ best young scientists at the prestigious Young Tall Poppy Science Awards on Tuesday, 11 November 2014.
Spitler, a joint appointment between Macquarie University and the Australian Astronomical Observatory, focuses his research on pushing current telescope technology to its limits.
“My research takes advantage of a useful characteristic of our universe: light travels at a limited speed,” says Spitler.
“With new telescope technologies we can observe light produced an early period of the universe: when it was 3 billion years old and only a fifth of the age it is today. We are working towards completing a historical record of how galaxies like the galaxy we live in, the Milky Way, was created and evolved over the 13.7 billion year lifetime of the universe!”
The awards are run by the Australian Institute of Policy and Science (AIPS) to honour up-and-coming scientists who combine world-class research with a passionate commitment to communicating science. More than 300 young scientists have been honoured nationally since the award was established in 2000.
As part of the Young Tall Poppy campaign, award winners will spend a year sharing their knowledge with school students, teachers and the broader community through workshops, seminars and public lectures.
“Astronomy is a great way for children, young adults and adults to think and be inspired by science,” says Spitler. “I’m really looking forward to getting to more schools, astronomy groups and community events throughout 2015.”
For more information about the Young Tall Poppy Awards go to: http://www.aips.net.au/tall-poppies/tall-poppy-campaign/young-tall-poppy-science-awards/