Parkes Radio Telescope illuminated at night and with the Milky Way behind it

Space and astronomy

CSIRO operates a number of astronomy facilities. These include the  Australia Telescope National Facility (ATNF), which includes the Parkes radio telescope, Murriyang, and ASKAP, in Western Australia, the Canberra Deep Space Communication Centre, CDSCC, the CSIRO Centre for Earth Observation and the New Norcia Deep Space Antenna plus the space research program.

Our astronomers study cosmic objects, such as galaxies, gas clouds and pulsars, using our own radio telescopes and other instruments to build a deeper understanding of the Universe.

Learn more about space and astronomy


Visualisation of a pulsar

Visualisation of a pulsar. Credit: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF

PULSE@Parkes is a free educational program for students in years 10 – 12 run by CSIRO. It gives students the opportunity to use the iconic 64m Parkes radio telescope, Murriyang, live and remotely.

Using Parkes remotely but live, students observe pulsars, gather data then analyse it using an online module. The data is freely and publicly available, either via a simple database for students or in professional format via the CSIRO Data Access Portal. It can be used for open-ended student investigations.

An intrinsic and valuable part of the program is the interactions students have  with our professional astronomers whilst observing. Students can ask questions about pulsars, astronomy, science careers and study options.

The program launched in December 2007. Since then over 2,500 students from more than 250 schools have participated in it. Sessions have reached schools in every state and territory across Australia and many other countries.

Meet our team

Robert Hollow

Robert Hollow

Robert is the Education Manager and Student Coordinator for space & astronomy. He is the Education Lead and Program Coordinator for PULSE@Parkes.

Picture of Dr George Hobbs, pulsar astronomer and PULSE@Parkes Science Lead.

George Hobbs

Dr George Hobbs, a pulsar expert, is a senior research scientist and Group Leader in space & astronomy. George is the Science Lead for PULSE@Parkes.

Dr Andrew Zic

Andrew Zic

Dr Andrew Zic is an Impossible Without You fellow  at CSIRO. He studies how various sources of bias might affect our search for the gravitational wave background with pulsar timing arrays.

Dr Dilpreet Kaur

Dilpreet Kaur

Dr Dilpreet Kaur is postdoctoral fellow at CSIRO who studies applications of pulsars  to study the interstellar medium, space weather,  for cryptography and space navigation.

Dr Marcus Lower

Marcus Lower

Dr Marcus Lower is a postdoctoral fellow in Space & Astronomy. They study the imprints that magnetic fields and the interstellar medium leave on radio waves emitted by young pulsars.

Dr Wenhua Ling

Wenhua Ling

Dr Wenhua Ling is an R+ CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellow in Practical Applications of Pulsars. She studies how to use pulsars to extract random numbers.

Dr Jane Kaczmarek

Jane Kaczmarek

Dr Jane Kaczmarek is the Senior System Scientist at Murriyang/Parkes telescope. Having worked at radio telescopes for the past 6 years, she loves to enable new and exciting astronomy research.

Rami Mandow

Rami Mandow

Rami is a PhD student with Macquarie University and CSIRO, studying pulsar timing and has spent many hours observing with the Parkes radio telescope.

Lawrence Toomey

Lawrence Toomey

Lawrence Toomey is responsible for our Parkes data archiving and software support.

Contact us

Email the PULSE@Parkes Team

Call us: 02 9372 4247

Program Coordinator: Robert Hollow (email robert.hollow(at)csiro.au)

Catch us on Social Media

PULSE@Parkes on Twitter