Today a group of Year 11 Physical Sciences students had the opportunity to speak to Dr Kirrily Rule from Australia’s Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO). Kirrily spoke to the students via video link from ANSTO where she is an instrument scientist in the Australian Centre for Neutron Scattering. She uses neutron diffraction to study magnetism at very small scales (quantum magnetism) on the thermal triple-axis spectrometer, TAIPAN. Kirrily also investigates the properties of superconducting materials, which in the future may be used for the next generation of electronics, data storage and transport.

The students were excited to speak to a nuclear scientist after studying nuclear decay, reactions and mass spectrometry earlier this year in the Physical Sciences course. During the session, they were able to ask Kirrily questions about her work as an ANSTO scientist and relate this to the Science they are learning in the classroom. They heard that the temperatures required for some of her experiments are colder than the coldest regions of space and her work has been featured on the TV series The Big Bang Theory. It was a very interesting and inspiring session.

Luke Hammond
Teacher