Basser Seminar Series

Pay TV to pulsars: where a career in ICT can take you

Speaker: Dr Trevor Bird
CSIRO

Be inspired by multi-award winning CSIRO scientist Dr Trevor Bird as he recounts the impact his thirty year career has had on industry and science.

Time: Friday 14 October 2011, 4:30pm-5:30pm (doors open at 4:15pm) followed by refreshments.
Location: The University of Sydney, Eastern Avenue Lecture Theatre, Camperdown Campus, Eastern Avenue Complex (K5)

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Abstract

Today’s satellite industry wouldn’t think twice about computerised design of antennas, but someone had to be the pioneer. At a time when extensive physical prototyping was the norm for on-board satellite antennas, Dr Trevor Bird and his team were at the vanguard of computer-based design.

For the pay TV industry, their work led to the first multibeam antenna for satellite earth stations. This innovation means a single antenna can receive signals from, or transmit signals to, many satellites: they are now used around the world.

Applying the multibeam technique to pure science, Dr Bird developed a feed system for CSIRO’s Parkes radio telescope which led to the first sighting of a double pulsar. Observatories such as Jodrell Bank and Arecibo also have multibeam feed systems designed by Dr Bird.

Dr Bird was the first person from outside the United States to be made Editor in Chief of the most prestigious journal of antenna research, the IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation – a position he held for an unprecedented two terms.

Speaker's biography

Trevor Bird gained his PhD from the University of Melbourne in 1977. He worked in the UK and returned to Australia to lecture in Queensland before joining CSIRO in 1983.

Dr Bird has published 300 papers and 7 book chapters – including the fourth edition of the Antenna Engineering Handbook, the standard reference on antennas since the 1960s. He holds 12 patents and his projects have earned tens of millions of dollars for CSIRO.

He is a Fellow of four learned societies, including an honorary Fellowship of the Institution of Engineers, Australia.

Dr Bird has been awarded two CSIRO Medals, an IEEE Third Millennium Medal, a Centenary Medal for service to Australian society in telecommunications, five best paper awards, and was also named 2003 Professional Engineer of the Year by the Sydney Division of Engineers Australia. He was made a CSIRO Fellow in 2007 and recently commenced a Post-retirement Fellowship. He is an Adjunct Professor at Macquarie University and a Guest Professor of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.