ICRAR’s Executive Team is responsible for the day-to-day management of ICRAR’s research, administration and outreach, education and communication programs.
Director, Translation and Impact (Curtin)
P: 08 9266 9471
Tom is a program and operations specialist with experience in complex project development and procurement, as well as remote area operations. Tom led the procurement and construction of the MWA and now leads ICRAR-Curtin’s Engineering Operations program, which includes responsibility for activity on the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory site. Tom has also led ICRAR-Curtin’s successful industry engagement throughout SKA preconstruction, helping local companies to understand and engage with the project.
P: 08 9266 7951
David Bruce Davidson was born in London, UK, but grew up and was educated in South Africa. He received the B.Eng, B.Eng (Hons), and M.Eng degrees from the University of Pretoria, South Africa, in 1982, 1983, and 1986 respectively, and the Ph.D. and D.Eng. degrees from Stellenbosch University, South Africa, in 1991 and 2017 respectively.
David started work at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Pretoria, from 1985-88, but spent much of his career at Stellenbosch University (from 1988-2017). From 2011-17, he held the SA SKA Research Chair at Stellenbosch University; he was also a Distinguished Professor there, and is presently Professor Extraordinary. As of 2018, he joined Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia, where he is presently Engineering Director of the Curtin Institute for Radio Astronomy, and holds the Chair of Radio Astronomy Engineering. He has held a number of visiting appointments, including at the University of Arizona, Cambridge University, Delft University of Technology, and the University of Manchester. His main research interest through most of his career has been computational electromagnetics and his research contributed to leading commercial software. In recent years, his interests have expanded to include engineering electromagnetics for radio astronomy.
Director, Science (Curtin)
P: 08 9266 9141
Professor James Miller-Jones received his DPhil from the University of Oxford. Following a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Amsterdam, he spent three years at NRAO Charlottesville as a Jansky Fellow, before joining the Curtin node of ICRAR as a Curtin Research Fellow in 2010. In 2014 he won an ARC Future Fellowship to study the process of low-luminosity accretion onto stellar-mass black holes. He took on the role of Science Director at ICRAR-Curtin in 2017, and was appointed as a Professor in 2019.
His work investigates the nature of relativistic jets from stellar-mass compact objects and their connection to the process of accretion, using many of the world’s most powerful radio telescopes in concert with facilities from across the electromagnetic spectrum to determine how such jets are launched, and their impact on the surrounding environment. The Square Kilometre Array and its precursor facilities, including the Murchison Widefield Array and MeerKAT, will allow him to study jet-producing radio transients in unprecedented detail.
P: 08 6488 4553
Professor Peter Quinn was born in Australia and received his BSc (Hons) in Mathematics and Physics from the University of Wollongong in 1978. He conducted graduate studies in astronomy and astrophysics at the Australian National University and received his PhD in 1982 with a thesis dissertation on dynamics of disk galaxy mergers.
Since then Peter has worked at the California Institute of Technology, the NASA Space Telescope Science Institute and the Data Management and Operations Division at the European Southern Observatory headquarters in Munich. In December 2005, Peter was awarded a Western Australian Premier’s Fellowship and took of the position of Professor of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Western Australia in August 2006. He was appointed Director of ICRAR in 2009.
Director, Translation and Impact (UWA), Chief Operating Officer
P: 08 6488 7871
Dr Renu Sharma has held senior management positions at The University of Western Australia and has managed two large and complex schools since December 2002. She has also served as Equity and Diversity Advisor.
Her management responsibilities include strategic and operational planning, finance and human resource management, safety, health and risk management, marketing and promotion and supporting teaching, research and research training activities through a culture of continual improvement. In addition to her management experience in Australia, Renu has nearly two decades of experience working in the Science and Technology sector in India. Renu has a PhD in Nematology and has published one book, two national reports, eleven invited chapters in books, nine research articles in refereed journals and many presentations in seminars and symposia.
Director, Science (UWA)
P: 08 6488 4550
Professor Lister Staveley-Smith completed his PhD in Radio Astronomy at the University of Manchester in 1985, before taking up a postdoctoral position there. From 1989, Lister was based at the Australia Telescope National Facility in Sydney. In 2006 he was appointed Professor of Physics and Astronomy at UWA and Premier’s Fellow at UWA. He was appointed Deputy Director of ICRAR in 2009, and ICRAR/UWA Science Director in 2014.
Through his research Lister is preparing the path for the next generation of telescopes and instruments such as the SKA and its precursors, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) and the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA).
Deputy Executive Director
P: 08 9266 4908
John Curtin Distinguished Professor Steven Tingay is the Deputy Executive Director of ICRAR and leads the Curtin University node of ICRAR. He is an expert in astronomy and astrophysics, in particular radio astronomy. His areas of expertise encompass building and using radio telescopes, as well as astrophysical interpretation. Tingay likes designing challenging and novel experiments to answer fundamental questions about the Universe. Prof. Tingay has been at Curtin University since 2007. Before 2007 he was at Swinburne University of Technology, CSIRO, and the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. He has a PhD in Astronomy and Astrophysics from the Australian National University and an Honours degree in Physics from The University of Melbourne. Recently Tingay was on secondement in Italy for 18 months, as Director of the INAF Instituto di Radioastronomia in Bologna and Head of Section II of the INAF Science Directorate. Previously, he was the Director of the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) project, the only fully operational precursor telescope for the Square Kilometre Array. He has authored or co-authored over 200 papers in international refereed journals and has attracted over $100m of research funding as Principle or Co-Investigator.
Director, Data Intensive Astronomy
P: 08 6488 7847
Professor Andreas Wicenec is a Research Professor and head of the Data Intensive Astronomy (DIA) program at ICRAR. Andreas is leading research efforts directed at the challenges of transmitting, storing and processing the enormous amounts of data generated from the radio telescope arrays being developed in Western Australia. He leads work on three main projects: (1) SKA Science Data Processor Data Layer design (2) Science Survey Support (3) High Performance Computing systems. Andreas joined ESO in 1997 as an archive specialist and was involved in the final implementation of the archive for ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) and then became ESO’s Archive Scientist and led the ALMA archive subsystem development group.. During his early career he was involved in the software development and reduction of photometric and astrometric Tycho data from the Hipparcos satellite. Prof. Wicenec is also involved in the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). His scientific interests and publications include high precision global astrometry, optical background radiation, stellar photometry, dynamics and evolution of planetary nebulae and observational survey astronomy and the related scheduling and computational concepts.