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

Closeup of a Phased Array Feed on one the 36 12m ASKAP antennas.


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
Photo of 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.
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
Dr Andrew Zic in front of one of the antennas of the GMRT in India.

Andrew Zic

Dr Andrew Zic is a postdoctoral fellow at Macquarie University and CSIRO. He studies how various sources of bias might affect our search for the gravitational wave background with pulsar timing arrays.

Picture of Dr Charlotte Sobey
Picture of Dr Charlotte Sobey, PULSE@Parkes team member and pulsar astronomer

Charlotte Sobey

Dr Charlotte Sobey, based in Perth, is an expert in using the world’s largest radio telescopes to study pulsars and magnetic fields.

Picture of Dr Suk Yee Yong, Postdoctoral Fellow and PULSE@Parkes team member.
Dr Suk Yee Yong, Postdoctoral Fellow and PULSE@Parkes team member.

Suk Yee Yong

Dr Suk Yee Yong is  a Postdoctoral Fellow in Space & Astronomy and the Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence Future Science Platform.

Rui Luo

Dr Rui Luo is a Postdoctoral Fellow in space & astronomy, working on how to find the unknowns in radio data. Meanwhile, he also studies Fast Radio Bursts and pulsars.

Jimi Green

Dr Jimi Green is a Group Leader in space and astronomy and the Parkes Senior System Scientist. He studies astrophysical masers.

Lawrence Toomey
Picture of Lawrence Toomey, PULSE@Parkes team member

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