Prize named for
Robert Ellery was Director of Melbourne Observatory for much of the second half of the 19th century, and one of the outstanding workers in Australian astronomy in that era.
Astronomical Society of Australia's Annual Scientific Meeting
The ASA recognises outstanding contributions in astronomy or a related field by the award of Robert Ellery Lectureships every two years.
In awarding the Robert Ellery Lectureship, the Council may give particular attention to contributions, or relevance, to astronomy in the southern hemisphere. Nevertheless, the award may be made for contributions in any branch of astronomy or a related field. The recipient of the Lectureship is invited to present a keynote lecture at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Society, or another approriate time, and also receives a certificate and an award of $1,000.
For more information on the Ellery Lectureship, visit http://asa.astronomy.org.au/ellery.html.
The 2017 Ellery Lectureship is awarded to
Professor Warrick Couch was born in New Zealand where he was educated through his school and undergraduate years, obtaining a 1st class honours degree in Physics in 1976 and Masters degree in astrophysics in 1977 from Victoria University in Wellington. He moved to Australia for his PHD studies at ANU where he undertook observations of the colours of galaxies in distant rich clusters, and provided the first independent confirmation of the Butcher-Oemler effect (where more blue galaxies are found in the past than are currently seen). His PhD was conferred in 1982.
Warrick took a postdoctoral position at Durham University, returning to Australia for a four-year fellowship at the Anglo-Australian Observatory (as it was then known). In 1989 Warrick took a job as lecturer at UNSW, and by 2005 he was Professor and Head of the school. In 2006, Warrick moved to take up the position of Distinguished Professor at the Swinburne Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing. Later, he obtained an ARC Professorial Fellowship there and in 2011 became the Director.
In 2012 Warrick was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science by Victoria University. Warrick left Swinburne to take up the Directorship of the AAO in 2013, where he is today.
Warrick’s research work has continued to be centred around galaxy evolution and instrument development. He has had numerous significant research awards, as well as many important roles of service to the astronomy and physics science communities in Australia.
Warrick’s research awards include:
2001 – Australian Citation Laureate Award (Thomson ISI)
2004 – Recognised as a "Highly Cited" researcher (Thomson ISI)
2007 – Gruber Prize in Cosmology (joint team winner) for his role in the discovery of the accelerating universe
2008 - Royal Astronomical Society Group Achievement Award (2dFGRS team)
2009 – Elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science
2011 – Member of the Supernova Cosmology Project whose leader, Saul Perlmutter, was awarded the Nobel Prize
2015 – Fundamental Breakthrough Prize in Physics
Warrick’s service to the scientific community include:
- Chair, International Gemini Science Committee
- Vice-Chair and Australian representative, Gemini Board of Directors
- Chair, Anglo-Australian Telescope Board
- A Director of AAL and Chair of the Board of AAL
- Australian representative on the Board of Directors of the Giant Magellan Telescope
- President of the Australian Institute of Physics
- President of the ASA