UC commended in quality audit

24 March 2015 A four-year academic audit report has commended the UC on wide-ranging and effective contributions made by students to the university's planning, reviews and services. (read article)

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Science study at UC doesn’t just take place in a lecture theatre or lab. Find out what Laura is researching at our Cass Field Station, an amazing facility for students.

John Hearnshaw

Introduction to John Hearnshaw

John Hearnshaw is a professor of astronomy at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. John's main areas of research are in stellar spectroscopy and detection of exo-planets.

John Hearnshaw

Introduction to Cliff Franklin

Cliff Franklin is a lab technician at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Karen Pollard

Introduction to Karen Pollard

Dr. Karen Pollard is involved in researching 'The music of the stars' by looking at modes of non radial pulsations within the stars. 

David Wiltshire

Introduction to David Wiltshire

David Wiltshire is a professor of physics at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. David's main area of research is on explaining dark energy and developing cosmological models that do not require its presence to drive an expanding universe. 

Anthony Butler

Introduction to Anthony Butler

Dr. Anthony Butler works on the MARS project at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Peter Cottrell

Introduction to Peter Cottrell

Prof. Peter Cottrell is an astronomer at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. Peter researches the spectra of stars and stellar evolution. 

‘I love learning about how the universe works...’

Jade Bennett Studying towards a BSc in Astronomy
(read profile)

Find us on Facebook

The Physics and Astronomy department is on Facebook.
The page will be updated with events and news as they come to hand and will be a great place for current students and staff as well our Alumni to keep in touch with the department.
Please come and like the page to receive updates.

Physics PhD scholarship available

Scanning Tunneling Microscopy studies of rare earth nitrides and related materials

This is an opportunity to explore how new rare earth nitride materials can be made and how they can be probed using scanning tunneling microscopy.

The successful candidate will have enthusiasm, a good honours or masters degree in physics (or related subject), and a desire to work in a multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary, collaborative environment. The successful candidate will be a member of the MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, a national Center of Research Excellence the provides may collaborative opportunities and a thriving environment to work in. The scholarship is worth $27,000 per annum and includes all student fees. The research will take place at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch , which has recently been rated as one the world’s top 10 cities to visit by Lonely Planet.

Please note that all applications must include:

  • A full Curriculum Vitae, INCLUDING your University transcript (i.e. list of grades awarded).
  • The names of at least two people who are prepared to act as referees.
  • Evidence of your English language ability
  • A clear statement about when you would expect to be able to come to NZ.

Only applications received before the deadline of 7 June 2015 will be considered. All applications should be emailed to Simon.Brown@canterbury.ac.nz.


Department Seminars are held each Friday in Room 701, Level 7 of the Rutherford Building at 11am.
See Upcoming Seminars for more details.

RSIC Construction Webcam and Timelapse of the Old Maths demolition.

Construction on the Rutherford Science and Innovation Centre can be viewed via a webcam in realtime here http://rsiccam1.canterbury.ac.nz and a timelapse of the demolition of the Old Math building can be veiwed here http://youtu.be/uordCOGzjug.

Calculator Checks

Calculator checks will resume in the first week of Semester 1 2015 for tests/exams that require it and will take place each
Wednesday, 12.45 - 1.15 in Rutherford 809b, Physics side of the Rutherford building. If your test is before the next checking time, you may borrow an approved calculator from the UCSA.

If you have any queries regarding this, please contact Examination Arrangements Senior Co-ordinator, Barbara Alberston on barbara.albertson@canterbury.ac.nz

2014 Dept Group Photo

Here is the 2014 Dept group photo taken during the Annual Dept Conference held on 4th September. In the past the dept photo was taken on the steps of the Old Maths building however Old Maths was being prepared for demolition at that time and is now down. This year's department photo is the first of many to be taken in its new location on the steps of the Puaka-James Hight, Central library.

Get to know Department Staff with nUCleus

The aim of nUCleus is to provide a connection between the academic staff of the physics and astronomy department at the University of Canterbury to the wider public. In these videos on the nUCleus youtube channel you will be able to get to know the staff better, find out what goes on in the department and learn new and interesting facts regarding physics and astronomy.

PhD Studentship opportunities


Archive of Departmental conferences and other conferences hosted and/or sponsored by the Department


Sean Gourley (Dept Alumni) interviewed for "The Cashmere Circuit" produced by Cashmere Highschool. Article by Ella Jacobs

News Archive

Department of Physics News Archive

  • Department of Physics and Astronomy
    University of Canterbury,
    Private Bag 4800,
    Christchurch 8140,
    New Zealand.
  • hod-secretary@phys.canterbury.ac.nz
    Phone: +64 3 364 2404
    Fax: +64 3 364 2469
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