Research & Innovation

Rio Tinto Eureka Prize for Commercialisation on Innovation

Digitalcore Pty Ltd, Australian National University and UNSW

The efficient use of precious hydrocarbon resources starts with improved recovery. Building on a decade of fundamental research at ANU and UNSW, Digitalcore is using supercomputing combined with high-resolution 3D scanning of oil-bearing rocks to come to the aid of the international oil and gas industry.

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage Eureka Prize for Environmental Research

Dr Dana Cordell and Professor Stuart White, University of Technology, Sydney

As a critical nutrient in fertilisers for food production, phosphorus has no substitute. Yet increasing scarcity of the world’s source of phosphorus threatens future food security. Dr Dana Cordell and Professor Stuart White’s research investigates how phosphorus resources can be sustainably managed to ensure long-term soil fertility, food security and environmental protection.

Australian Infectious Diseases Research Centre Eureka Prize for Infectious Diseases Research

Pellegrini Team, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

Dr Marc Pellegrini and team members Jesse Toe and Simon Preston have identified mechanisms to boost the ability of the immune system to kill and eliminate overwhelming infections in mice. These promising therapies are now being clinically tested overseas in patients infected with HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C.

Google Australia Eureka Prize for Innovation in Computer Science

Associate Professor Jon McCormack, Aidan Lane and Dr Alan Dorin Monash University, Peter McIlwain, Sonic Design

Nodal is software for composing and performing music. It uses a unique method of visually representing and playing music, unlike any previous system. Nodal began as a research project at Monash University and is now a successful commercial application used by thousands of musicians, students and music educators worldwide.

ANSTO Eureka Prize for Innovative Use of Technology

Monash Team of Bioactive Paper Diagnostics, Monash University

This Monash University team, led by Associate Professor Wei Shen, and colleague Professor Gil Garnier, have successfully developed a low-cost bioactive paper device for blood typing tests. Inspired by Harry Potter, the test quickly spells out your blood type in written text on paper enabling non-professional users to interpret the test results.

NSW Health Jamie Callachor Eureka Prize for Medical Research Translation

Professor David Kaye, Baker IDI

Professor David Kaye has developed a broad-application, catheter-based system that allows clinicians to closely regulate the level of medicines at a specific site in the body, and to prevent potentially toxic effects at other unintended sites in the body.

Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Early Career Researcher

Dr Marie-Liesse Asselin-Labat, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute for Medical Research

Sustained exposure to oestrogen and progesterone is a well-established risk factor for breast cancer. However, the cellular basis for these observations has been poorly understood. Dr Marie-Liesse Asselin-Labat’s research has unravelled how oestrogen exposure regulates breast stem cells, establishing a possible cellular link between female hormone exposure and breast cancer.

Defence Science and Technology Organisation Eureka Prize for Outstanding Science in Support of Defence or National Security

Adjunct Professor Yonggang Zhu, CSIRO

Professor Yonggang Zhu’s research into the physics of fluids in plastic microchips has led to the development of a field-deployable chemical detector that can fingerprint real chemical warfare agents with high sensitivity, reliability and unprecedented speed. It is shifting the paradigm in detection technology for national security, defence and other industries.

UNSW Eureka Prize for Scientific Research

Professor John Webb, Professor Victor Flambaum, Dr Julian King and Dr Julian Berengut, UNSW, and Associate Professor Michael Murphy, Swinburne University of Technology

Understanding whether the laws of nature depend on space or time is a major scientific goal. New measurements by Professor John Webb and his team suggest the laws of physics vary across the cosmos. If correct, this research will open a whole new chapter in physical science.

Voiceless Eureka Prize for Scientific Research that Contributes to Animal Protection

Professor Clive Phillips, University of Queensland

Professor Clive Phillips conducts research that improves animal welfare and increases our understanding of attitudes towards animals. The research covers farm, captive-wild and companion animals. Key areas include the export of livestock from Australia, reducing under-nutrition in rangeland animals, improving conditions for captive wildlife and increasing respect for animals.


3M Eureka Prize for Emerging Leader in Science

Dr Matthew Hill, CSIRO

Quality of life for future generations may depend on how much carbon dioxide exists in the atmosphere. Dr Matthew Hill leads a team that develops porous materials to store, purify and convert carbon dioxide for clean energy recycling.

CSIRO Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science

Professor Suzanne Cory, University of Melbourne

Professor Suzanne Cory is one of Australia's most distinguished scientists with more than 40 years’ contribution to scientific research, education and communication. Formerly Director of the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, she continues to promote Australian science and education as the current President of the Australian Academy of Science.

University of Technology, Sydney Eureka Prize for Outstanding Mentor of Young Researchers

Professor Douglas Hilton, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

Professor Doug Hilton has been mentoring young researchers for almost two decades. His passion, enthusiasm and scientific expertise are great assets when guiding and supporting his mentees, many of whom have become leading researchers in their own right.

Science Communication

Australian Government Eureka Prize for Promoting Understanding of Australian Science Research

Dr Rob Brander, UNSW

The Science of the Surf program by Dr Rob Brander, or Dr Rip as he is known, has significantly improved the understanding of the science of surf hazards, undoubtedly saving lives as a result. He has successfully promoted his surf science through presentations, YouTube, Facebook, school and community presentations, a popular book and mainstream media.

Australian Government Eureka Prize for Science Journalism

Gisela Kaufmann and Carsten Orlt, Kaufmann Productions

Project Manta explores the research of Dr Kathy Townsend and her team on manta rays – one of the largest marine animals, yet one of the ocean’s best kept secrets. Mantas are under threat, and this at a time when they could be key indicators of our rapidly changing world.

Broadcast on ABC TV, 6 March 2012

New Scientist Eureka Prize for Science Photography

Jason Edwards

First Documentation of a Humpback Whale Mating – Jason Edwards has, for the first time ever, documented the mating of the Humpback Whale, Megaptera novaeangliae. For several hours a pod of male Humpbacks competed in a battle of strength and endurance known as a ‘heat run’. The successful male mated with the female, stroking the cow’s flanks with his pectoral fins and holding her to him during copulation.

School Science

NSW Trade or Investment Eureka Prize for Science or Mathematics Teaching

Geoff McNamara, Melrose High School, ACT

Geoff McNamara’s ACE Science engages school students with genuine science and engineering. His students experience real-world science through an enriched curriculum, visits to university and industry laboratories, seminars presented by researchers, and original investigations under the guidance of scientists in the field, university laboratories and in the school’s ACE Lab.

University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize - Primary

Ignatius F., Oyster Bay Public School, NSW

Egg-normous! With his inquisitive young mind, Iggy noticed that the size of the eggs laid by his hens varied. He then formulated a hypothesis and documented his experiment on film. After 106 days he discovered that upon eating more protein, the eggs were in fact bigger.

University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize - Secondary

Brandon G., Casino High School, NSW

Lizards survive in many environments on earth: swamps, rainforests, woodlands and deserts. This lively mini-documentary, hosted by Brandon with support from a Lace Monitor, tells the story of The Legendary Lizard and how its adaptations aid its survival.