Blog Archives

Timely Success to Build High-Performance Clocks

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Dr Chris Perrella (Precision Measurement Group) was recently awarded a  Global Connections Fund Priming Grant. The purpose of the grant is to facilitate collaborations between Australian small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and researchers.

This Project will develop a compact high-performance optical clock for ultra-precise timing signals by bringing together Australia’s foremost precision measurement laboratory at the Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (IPAS), the University of Adelaide, and links it to the world’s leading company in optical precision measurement technology, Menlo Systems GmbH.

The compact high-performance optical clock has potential applications in: communication networks; telecommunications; global positioning systems (GPS); and inertial navigation systems.


pH Probe for Cancer Diagnostics One Step Closer to Clinical Trials

A probe, developed within IPAS and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP), that allows the real-time detection of differences in pH (indicative of healthy vs. cancer tissue) was featured in Flinders University news.

Funding from the State Government’s Medical Technologies Program has allowed a team involving Dr Erik Schartner, Prof Mark Hutchinson, Prof Grantley Gill and Dr Elizaveta Klantsataya to work with biomedical engineers within Flinders University’s Medical Device Partnering Program (MDPP) to bring the technology one step closer to clinical trials.

More information can be found on the Flinders University news page.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Excellence in Research Award for Dr Jiawen Li

jiawen-li Congratulations Dr Jiawen Li, who recently won a Women’s Research Excellence award.

She will be using the award to assist with travel to RMIT and Hong Kong Polytechnic University, where she hopes to build on exisiting collaborations.

Radiation Sensing and Optical Clocks Wins Support from DSTG

Dr Ruth Shaw (Institute for Minerals and Energy Resources) and Dr Chris Perrella (Precision Measurement Group) recently received funding from the Defence Science and Technology Group’s (DSTG) competitive evaluation research agreement (CERA) scheme.

Announced by the Minister for Defence Industry, the Honorable Christopher Pyne MP, CERA funding “allows us to draw on the expertise in Australian universities to initiate research into emerging technologies of interest to Defence,” Minister Pyne said.

The two successful projects from IPAS members were:

Chris Perella.Dr Chris Perrella (CI), Dr Fred Baynes, Dr Phil Light, Dr Ben Sparkes, Prof Andre Luiten & Belinda Pickett (DSTG)

High-Performance Optical Clock for Local Time References and UAV Applications

This project will develop an atomic, optical clock that will provide local timing signals used for navigation in the absence of global positioning systems (GPS) signals. The optical clock offers significant benefits over clocks currently used in GPS in terms of size, weight, power consumption, and their intrinsic performance. This kind of precision and high-stability timing signals are required for GPS and inertial navigation systems, and the optical clock will further minimise the risks of intentional jamming/spoofing or  other limitations in GPS access.

Ruth_Shaw2.jpgDr Ruth Shaw (CI), Prof Heike Ebendorff-Heidepriem, Prof Nigel Spooner, Dr Chris Kalnins, A/Prof David Ottaway and Carly Whittaker

Radiation-sensitive optical fibres for real-time distributed radiation sensing”

The project aims to characterise and use rare earth doped silica to develop sensitive fibre optic devices for the real-time monitoring of entryways associated with the transportation of radioactive material.

The media release from Christopher Pyne MP can be found here.

IPAS involved in 3 successful ARC LIEF Bids totalling $1.54M

IPAS has had considerable success in the latest round of the ARC Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) scheme, leading a bid for $400k and collaborating in 2 other successful bids worth 1.14M. The three projects are:

 $400k – Capability for the fabrication and characterisation of mid-infrared photonic materials to be located at IPAS.

 $640k – A high resolution environmental scanning electron microscope (HRESEM) for South Australia which will be located at Adelaide Microscopy

 $500k – Integrated photodetector array fabrication facility – this will be located at UWA and further strengthens the research links between IPAS and Professors Dell and Farone at UWA and Professor Jagadish at ANU.

 The award of these funds will enable researchers at the University of Adelaide and across Australia to advance their research and develop new materials and technologies.

 The ARC LIEF scheme fosters collaboration through its support of the cooperative use of national and international research facilities.

 Minister Carr chose the project led by IPAS to be 1 of 3 to be included in his statement for the LIEF round:

 Professor Tanya Monro – IPAS Director, said: “The award of these funds will transform our ability to develop new materials and fibre technologies. The research these bids will underpin is critical to IPAS and will significantly enhance our collaborations with UWA and ANU. We can’t wait to get the equipment commissioned and the research underway.”


 The University of Adelaide has state-of-the-art research laboratories for developing soft glass microstructured optical fibres within the Centre of Expertise in Photonics. Building on the success of this centre, the University has recently formed a new research institute, IPAS, the Institute for Photonics & Advanced Sensing, which brings together physicists, chemists and biologists to pursue an ambitious transdisciplinary research agenda in advanced sensing.

 For more information on IPAS please contact:

 IPAS Director – Professor Tanya Monro, telephone: +61 8 8303 3955 or email:

 IPAS Institute Manager – Piers Lincoln, telephone +61 8 8313 5772 or email:

 Executive Assistant – Ms Sara Boffa, telephone: +61 8 8313 1059 email:


 IPAS, University of Adelaide, South Australia, 5005