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University of Sydney

Strategic research agreement

ANSTO has signed a Strategic Relationship Agreement with the University of Sydney.

The strategic agreement replaces a long-standing MoU and sets the relationship between the two organisations into the future. 

Vice Chancellor USyd and Miles Apperley
Deputy Vice Chancellor Research University of Sydney Prof Duncan Ivison with Dr Miles Apperley, Head Research Infrastructure

In addition to the many successful research collaborations already underway including medical imaging to improve human health, as well as discovery research across the domains of chemistry, drug development, materials science, engineering, cultural heritage and nuclear physics, some of the future activities that will benefit from the agreement include:

  • A jointly funded academic research position with the School of Civil Engineering
  • A jointly funded postdoctoral research fellowship
  • Continued partnership in the form of a joint node of the National Imaging Facility through the operation of the National Cyclotron Research Facility and PET imaging facilities within the University’s Brain and Mind Centre.
  • A commitment to establish next-generation PET molecular imaging capability for pre-clinical as well as human research.

“The continuation of this relationship ensures that we can give our researchers access to some of the best research infrastructure in the world,” said Prof Laurent Rivory, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research). 

“We look forward to continued success with our ANSTO colleagues and the ongoing benefits this collaboration will bring to our community.”

Some of the many collaborative projects include:

  • The development of a world-first imaging system to investigate the causes and potential treatments of mental illness and diabetes
  • Sydney Analytical and Sydney University collaboration with experts such as medical scientists and illustrators from  several institutions on the Mummy Project, making astonishing discoveries concerning  age, sex, biology, genetics, diet, disease and processes of mummification
  • Research on dinosaur bones using neutron and X-ray techniques and combining those with the University’s vibrational spectroscopic techniques to provide unprecedented information on not only bone structure and how it relates to modern species, but also in some cases how they lived. 

Dr Miles Apperley, Head of Research Infrastructure, who signed the agreement on behalf of ANSTO, said,  “The renewal of this longstanding partnership with the University of Sydney re-affirms our great confidence in collaborative initiatives related to research and infrastructure that draw on our combined expertise in medical imaging to improve human health, as well as discovery research across the domains of chemistry, drug discovery, materials science, engineering, cultural heritage and nuclear physics.” 

We are continuing to build and invest in our relationship with the University, with a range of strategic initiatives and partnerships to come including the operation of national pre-clinical imaging and radiochemistry capability through the National Imaging Facility, a national total body PET imaging and joint funding of academic and research staff.

More than 50 University of Sydney researchers annually use our landmark and national research infrastructures contributing to the University’s significant research excellence. We hope this agreement will encourage more will come. ”


Sydney University is Australia’s leading higher education and research university. It has been challenging traditions for more than 160 years and strives to make lives better by producing leaders of society and equipping people with leadership qualities so they can serve communities at every level.


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