The Science Exchange, 55 Exchange Place, Adelaide SA 5000 [View map]


The Career of the Future

Want to learn more about Careers of the Future? Download our Ultimate Science Guide today! Job Description: Senior Interplanetary Archaeologist, Space Heritage Unit, United Nations Committee for Space Environment Management (UNCSEM) Date: 2050 Reports to: Director-General, UNCSEM and International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) Space Heritage Committee Responsible for: Four field ... Continue Reading »

The Six Stages of Life

Love animals? Check out BBC's Life Story at Vivid in Sydney! Every animal, from the smallest insect to humans travels through life on a journey from birth to death. We all go through it, but there are six major stages that are familiar across all groups on land and ... Continue Reading »

A Force For Evil, A Force For Good

Are we entering an age of a more mature internet? Has the online environment grown out of pointless blathering and the spreading of misinformation and gossip towards effective governance and evidence-based thinking? I’ll argue that yes, there are encouraging signs that we may have turned some kind of corner and ... Continue Reading »

Biological Diversity

May the 22nd is the International Day of Biological Diversity. Biological diversity (sometimes abbreviated to biodiversity) refers to all the amazing life forms on earth – the colourful parrots, the intelligent rats, the tallest trees and the toxicity of some fungi. Biological diversity measures range from genes to landscapes, but most ... Continue Reading »

Cerumen: The Unsung Hero of our Ears

Cerumen, more commonly called earwax, is secreted by glands in our ears and protects the vital organs inside from dust, debris and damaging pathogens. Although there have been some conflicting results, most recent data shows that earwax is able to kill several of the most common infection causing bacteria and ... Continue Reading »

Should Films be Scientifically Accurate?

Like films with a scientific theme? Come to our event Dinosaurs on the Big Screen! You can watch Jurassic World and our exclusive premiere of RiAus documentary, Dinosaurs on the Big Screen. The ability to suspend disbelief is essential to the enjoyment of storytelling. Humans innately understand this. Differentiating ... Continue Reading »

The Evolution of Family

When we think of human families, we think of a group of people that look alike and care for each other. These similarities in appearance are a result of shared genetic material, but the caring is something that has also been shaped by evolution. Like all other species on Earth, natural ... Continue Reading »

Conspiracies, Cognition and Control

If you are ever in need of an evening’s worth of fascinating reading, type the name of any major event from the last few years into Google alongside the word “conspiracy”. A supposedly alternative explanation - in the form of a conspiracy theory - exists for everything, from the ... Continue Reading »

An Unusual Presentation

The Patron of RiAus (and the reason we have ‘Royal’ in our title) is His Royal Highness Prince Edward, Duke of Kent. Recently he visited Australia as the Queen’s Representative for the centenary commemorations of the Gallipoli landings and, while here, he visited us in Adelaide at The Science Exchange. As ... Continue Reading »

Dr. Andrew S. W. Thomas AO

Dr. Andrew S. W. Thomas AO is a Bragg member of RiAus and as part of a joint project with DSD is talking to South Australian students on Tuesday 5 May 2015. Growing up, a lot of kids want to become an astronaut. Who wouldn’t? You get to travel ... Continue Reading »

What Are Stars?

If you like this, then you should come visit the The Winning Sky Photographs: The David Malin Awards 2014 in the Future Space Gallery! Star-gazing is a bit of a hobby of mine. I don’t take it very seriously, and I can’t name many constellations beyond the ‘Southern Cross’ ... Continue Reading »


I dread spring time. When my friends are all enjoying picnics in the park or walking through the bush, I'm stuck indoors snivelling into a tissue with itchy red eyes feeling very sorry for myself. I am one of the 3 million Australians who have allergic rhinitis, or ... Continue Reading »

Melbourne Immunology Day Lectures 2014

Visions for a disease-free world: Vaccinations against infectious diseases, was the theme for the 2014 free public lecture held at the Melbourne Brain Centre. This was just one in a series of Day of Immunology Melbourne events, which also included research laboratory discovery tours and educational workshops. Overall, more than ... Continue Reading »

A Jab in the History Books

World Immunization Week is coming up – that means it’s time to celebrate our remarkable microscopic workhorses of preventative medicine! This initiative by the World Health Organisation (WHO) is run in the last week of April (24-30th), and ‘aims to promote the use of vaccines to protect people ... Continue Reading »

Artificial Intelligence

The term Artificial intelligence (AI) was first coined by the computer scientist John McCarthy in 1955, who defined it as “the science and engineering of making intelligent machines, especially intelligent computer programs”. Intelligence is made up of a number of components that allow for behavioural ... Continue Reading »

The Social Acceptance of PTSD

Who are these? Why sit they here in twilight? Wherefore rock they, purgatorial shadows, Drooping tongues from jaws that slob their relish, Baring teeth that leer like skulls' tongues wicked? Stroke on stroke of pain, — but what slow panic, Gouged these chasms round their fretted sockets? Ever from their hair and through their hand palms Misery ... Continue Reading »

What is RiAus Up To?

This is a slightly redacted speech recently presented at a dinner for the Patron of RiAus, HRH the Duke of Kent. Here I explore what RiAus is up to and why it is important. We live in a marvellous time! A moment in history filled with potential. We are healthier, wealthier ... Continue Reading »

Hallo Space Boy, You’re Sleepy Now

This week’s A Week in Science episode certainly had me thinking, plus it started a few very random discussions in the office! Well, any discussion about the impending doom of the Earth fascinates and entertains the RiAus staff, actually anything scientific and slightly off-kilter is classed as entertainment ... Continue Reading »

How Your Breasts Change During Your Periods

Women see big changes to their breasts during pregnancy and lactation, but did you know changes also occur during their periods? Normally these changes are subtle but noticeable increases in breast tenderness or swelling during different parts of the cycle. Just as the uterus grows a tissue lining, which it ... Continue Reading »

Algal Biofuel

If you’re outside enjoying a lunch under clear skies, each square metre surrounding you is receiving about 1,000 watts of energy from the Sun. As we well know, plants and algae convert this light energy into chemical energy via the process of photosynthesis. What may seem ... Continue Reading »

The Science Of ‘Smart’ Cars

Smart cars are, generally, traditional style cars that incorporate new technology to enhance the experience for the driver, make the car safer and to improve the energy efficiency of the car. With a large emphasis being placed on energy efficiency and sustainability, many different types of fuel sources are being ... Continue Reading »

Humans in Space

Space has fascinated us throughout history, from ancient cave paintings to epic sci-fi fantasies. For a long time, the only way we could explore what lay in the great beyond was with our imagination, and later, our technology. It was not until the first heavier-than-air flight in 1903 by the ... Continue Reading »

A Virtual World of Future Discovery

Want to learn more about Careers of the Future? Download our Ultimate Science Guide today! Anthropology isn’t the study of ants (believe me, I’m asked about ants often). It is the study of people or culture. There is a much larger, more complex and heavily debated definition, but that ... Continue Reading »

The Scientific Historians of Life

If you like this, then you should tune into ABC radio every second Thursday to hear Paul discuss science (and whatever else he's interested in). So, what has palaeontology ever done for us? Surely of all the useful, applicable sciences, palaeontology must rank at the bottom? It’s a great ... Continue Reading »

World Health Day 2015 – Food Safety

A casual look through the aisles of your local supermarket will reveal just how globalised our food has become. When many fresh fruits and vegetables are seasonally unavailable, they are often sourced from overseas. This is driven by the demand for the all year availability of food items regardless of ... Continue Reading »

Lights Off! It’s Earth Hour

Have you got your diary handy? A calendar? Your phone? If you do could you write an important reminder for the 28th March: Earth Hour 8:30 pm. You also might want to make a sub note: buy some candles. Earth Hour is a movement that began in Sydney back in ... Continue Reading »

Chuckles, Chortles and Giggles

Chuckles, chortles, giggles - we are all familiar with the experience of laughter. It is an involuntary physical response to happiness and humour, with the ability to cross cultural and language barriers. Laughter is one of the first ways that we learn to interact with the world, with babies developing ... Continue Reading »

The Beauty in Nature

We live in a world where science and technology is everywhere; from the smart phone in your hand to the fuel efficient, automatic parking, city braking hybrid car that can practically drive itself. However, rarely does one stop to consider the beauty of the natural world and the science contained ... Continue Reading »

Be Careful What You Eat

If you like this, then you should tune into ABC radio every second Thursday to hear Paul discuss science (and whatever else he's interested in). What is it with fad diets and quack remedies? While both have been around for as long as people want a quick fix for ... Continue Reading »

World Meteorological Day

Celebrated on March the 23rd each year, World Meteorological Day is in honour of the creation of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) (formerly the International Meteorological Organisation). The purpose of the organisation is to improve our knowledge of climatic influences – including weather and hydrological events. The organisation ... Continue Reading »

The Large Hadron Collider

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is part of a project run by the European Organisation for Nuclear Research or CERN. It is the world’s largest particle collider and was built between 1998 and 2008. The LHC is 100 meters underground at the border of Switzerland and France and ... Continue Reading »

World Down Syndrome Day

The blueprint for a human, the DNA is packaged in a specialised way. These packages are called chromosomes. Human beings have 46 chromosomes in every single cell, containing all of the information needed for cell growth and function. Down syndrome occurs when there is an extra copy of chromosome number ... Continue Reading »

Brittany Wenger: A Young Scientist

Entries to the Google Science Fair are now open! It was in 1915, that a 25-year-old Australian-born physicist named William Bragg Jnr. received the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in the field of x-ray crystallography. At the time, he was the youngest scientist ever to receive the honour. Flash ... Continue Reading »

The Problems Facing Australian Shorebirds

If you like this, then you should come visit the Flyway Shorebird Exhibition in the Future Space Gallery! Australia is a very important place for shorebirds – over five million migrate from our shores each year to undertake the journey to their Arctic breeding grounds. During October to May ... Continue Reading »

The Superheroes of the Animal Kingdom

Time and time again it seems that even our most astonishing ideas and inventions are no match for Mother Nature. The natural world seems to evolve and perfect the weirdest ideas that humans could possibly imagine. Early explorers used compasses to navigate the seas; birds have been using the Earth’s ... Continue Reading »
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