Field of Research (FoR)
Professor Russell Boyce holds the position of Chair for Space Engineering at UNSW Canberra, where he leads the UNSW Canberra Space Research effort. He brings to this role a research approach developed throughout 25 years in the field of hypersonics, coupling computational and experimental research with flight testing, most recently via the SCRAMSPACE scramjet flight experiment program which he led as Chair for Hypersonics at the University of...view more
Professor Russell Boyce holds the position of Chair for Space Engineering at UNSW Canberra, where he leads the UNSW Canberra Space Research effort. He brings to this role a research approach developed throughout 25 years in the field of hypersonics, coupling computational and experimental research with flight testing, most recently via the SCRAMSPACE scramjet flight experiment program which he led as Chair for Hypersonics at the University of Queensland. Professor Boyce also chairs the Australian Academy of Science’s National Committee for Space and Radio Science, sits on the Executive Council of the Space Industry Association of Australia, and is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
In particular, Professor Boyce is focussing on four areas :
- establishing a capability in Space Situational Awareness, in which physics-based modelling of the interaction between space objects (satellites and debris) and their near-earth environment will be performed to add orbit-prediction (for collision avoidance) to the sophisticated array of SSA sensors that Australia will be operating in the near future. SSA is a critical area of research in the coming years and decades, and is identified as such in Australia's first national space policy released in 2013.
- using the SSA research as the vehicle to develop a sustainable university-led program to routinely conceptualise, develop and fly affordable responsible in-orbit missions to perform innovative research in space. This will include flying a minimum of four nanosat missions, which will include flight experiments for validating Space Situational Awareness simulation and observation capabilities, demonstrations of novel space-based instrumentation, and satellite formation flying. The space missions will be underpinned with world-leading ground-based experimental research employing space test chambers, advanced diagnostics and supercomputer simulations.
- promoting and strengthening UNSW Canberra's unique space engineering and space operations Master degree programs, with the aim of establishing UNSW Canberra as a leading provider of space education worldwide .
- developing a think-tank environment for space-related issues, to contribute to the evolving Australian space journey at a thought leadership level.
Chair, National Committee for Space and Radio Science (Australian Academy of Science) :
The National Committee for Space and Radio Science (NCSRS) is a newly merged committee (from Space Science and Radio Science) of the Australian Academy of Science that fosters and provides coordination of space and radio science activities in Australia. It’s activities include : liaising with national bodies and societies, undertaking reviews of the space science sector, preparing submissions to government inquiries, contributing to policy discussions of relevance to space and radio science, and providing advice to the Council of the Academy of Science. Professor Boyce was a member of the former National Committee for Space Science (NCSS) since 2008, and was elected to the role of Chairman in 2011.
Previous role - Chair for Hypersonics, University of Queensland (2007-2013) :
A Chair funded by Australia’s Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) as the focal point for the relationship between DSTO and The University of Queensland (UQ) in hypersonics. Professor Boyce's mandate was to provide strategic leadership, research and teaching in hypersonics, to help ensure that the hypersonics activities of UQ and DSTO in particular, and those of Australia in general, rest on a firm foundation and maintain Australia’s position of world leadership. He established and led a team of 25 postdoctoral scientists, engineers and PhD students to achieve this goal.
As part of his hypersonics activities, Professor Boyce developed and led the successful international SCRAMSPACE program :
SCRAMSPACE was the 13-partner, $14M international project “Scramjet-based Access-to-Space Systems” funded by the Australian Space Research Program. By means of a Mach 8 scramjet flight experiment supported by extensive ground-based research and development, SCRAMSPACE had the primary strategic objective of building capacity and capability for the future Australian space sector. The SCRAMSPACE consortium included UQ, DSTO, University of New South Wales, University of Adelaide, University of Southern Queensland, BAE Systems, Aerospace Industrial & Marine Technologies (AIMTEK), Teakle Composites, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Italian Aerospace Research Center (CIRA), University of Minnesota, and the Australian Youth Aerospace Association. Over 100 journal and conference publications resulted from the program, and the research of 29 postdoc and PhD students across four Australian universities was enabled.