PhD scholarships - Understanding diversity: chemokinematic tracers of
Apply now Job No:516178
Area:Faculty of Science
Salary (FTE):RTP Scholarship NON-BANDED ($28,597.00 - $28,597.00)
Work type:Full Time - Scholarship
Location: St Lucia
UQ ranks in the top 50 as measured by the Performance Ranking of Scientific
Papers for World Universities. The University also ranks 46 in the QS World
University Rankings, 42 in the US News Best Global Universities Rankings, 66
in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings and 54 in the Academic
Ranking of World Universities.
Supervisor – Dr Sarah Sweet
Understanding galaxy formation and evolution is a fundamental unresolved goal
of Astrophysics today. Three of the six major questions outlined in the
Decadal Plan for Australian Astronomy 2016–2025 advance the field of galaxy
evolution: ‘How do galaxies form?', ‘What is the nature of dark matter?', ‘How
are elements recycled through galaxies?' These questions can be summed up in
the specific motivation for this project, ‘How do the clumpy, irregular
galaxies at the peak of cosmic star formation (cosmic high noon) become the
familiar Hubble types we see today?'
The aim of these projects is to understand the fundamental physics behind the
morphological evolution of galaxies. We are investigating the angular momentum
and chemical abundance across the face of galaxies throughout the Universe, to
construct a framework of chemokinematic diagnostics that can trace the
evolution of galaxies of all kinds.
There are two PhD projects on offer.
Project 1 is on galaxy angular momentum. A galaxy's morphology is
quantified by the ratio of light in its central bulge compared with total
luminosity. This 'bulge-to-total ratio' works reasonably well for nearby,
well-resolved and regular galaxies, but not as well for distant galaxies which
are more difficult to observe and are more often clumpy and irregular. The
distribution of angular momentum within a galaxy fundamentally encodes
information about that galaxy's evolution and morphology and consequently is a
new physically-grounded method for classifying galaxies. This project involves
developing this classification method for galaxies of all morphological types
and at all redshifts.
Project 2 is on chemical abundance diagnostics. Chemical content is an
important signature of a galaxy's lifecycle, as the buildup of elements from
hydrogen and helium to heavier 'metals' is intimately linked to its history of
star formation. There are two equally-justifiable methods for measuring
chemical content based on regions of active star formation within galaxies,
but the methods are not properly calibrated, so they do not agree. Moreover,
they are valid in different regimes, so that we cannot accurately compare
distant galaxies with those nearby, or massive galaxies with small ones. This
project involves working with 3D spectroscopic data to obtain a complete
three-dimensional picture of star-forming regions, and recalibrate the
chemical content measurements.
A working knowledge of programming languages such as Python and/or R would be
of benefit to someone working on this project.
To be eligible to apply, you must also meet the entry requirements for Higher
Degrees by Research at UQ.
This scholarship is open to Australian citizens, permanent residents and
International students who are currently in Australia at the time of
application and commencement.
Applications will be judged on a competitive basis taking into account the
applicant's previous academic record, publication record, honours and awards,
and employment history.
The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field/s of
astrophysics and the potential for scholastic success.
The 2022 Research Training Program (RTP) living allowance stipend rate is
AUD$28,854 per annum (indexed annually), which is tax-free for 3.5 years,
with the possibility of 1 extension in line with UQ and RTP Scholarship Policy
For further information, please contact Dr Sarah Sweet at firstname.lastname@example.org
0402 089 803
How to apply
To apply for admission and scholarship, follow this link. There is no separate
application for scholarship because you will have the opportunity to request
scholarship consideration on the application for admission.
Before submitting an application you should:
check your eligibility
prepare your documentation
contact Dr Sarah Sweet (email@example.com) to discuss your suitability
for this scholarship
When you apply, please ensure that under the scholarships and collaborative
study section you:
Select ‘My higher degree is not collaborative'
Select 'I am applying for, or have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship'.
Select ‘Other', then ‘Research Project Scholarship' and type in ‘GALAXY-SWEET' in the 'Name of scholarship' field.
See an example of what you have to do
Learn more about applying for a higher degree by research at UQ
Applications close: 27 September 2021 (11:00 PM) E. Australia Standard Time
Advertised: 15 Sep 2021
Applications close: 27 Sep 2021 (11:00 PM) E. Australia Standard Time