Doctor Ragbir Bhathal

Doctor Ragbir Bhathal

LECTURER,
Engineering and Construction Management

Biography

Dr Ragbir Bhathal was a Commonwealth Scholar and did his PhD at the Physics Department at the University of Queensland under the supervision of Professor Frank Stacey, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.  He has published papers in Nature, New Scientist, Astronomy & Geophysics, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, The Astronomical Journal, Journal of Geophysical research  and several papers in international refereed journals. He has published fifteen books, six books on astronomy and two on Aboriginal astronomy. He wrote the first Australian edition of University Physics with Modern Physics with Hugh Young and Roger Freedman.  His book 'Frontiers in Astronomy' was highly praised by the former President of the Australian Academy of Science, Professor Sir Gustav Nosal. His latest book with Ralph Sutherland and Harvey Butcher is Mount Stromlo: From Bush Observatory to the Nobel Prize. It was highly praised by Professor Bob Frater, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science. In reviewing the book he noted: "This book is a must read ... The book has been meticulously researched and has the benefit of a number of personal interviews conducted with astronomers over the years by one of the authors, Ragbir Bhathal. It does great justice to the many people who contributed to the building of the observatory and its continuing contributions to science. The many cross-linkages with other optical and radioastronomy observatories in the broader Australian astronomy scene are well presented and allow the reader to understand the broader developments in this country".   Dr Bhathal was awarded the Bicentennial (1988) Royal Society of NSW Medal for services to science and research, the CJ Dennis Award for excellence in natural history writing and the prestigious Nancy Keesing Fellowship by the State Library of NSW. He has served as a UNESCO consultant on science policy for the ASEAN group of nations, as an Adviser to the Federal Minister for Science, was a member of the committee for the establishment of the National Science & Technology Centre (Questacon) in Canberra, and was the Project Director for the million dollar Sydney Observatory restoration building program. Dr Bhathal also designed and built the Campbelltown Rotary Onbservatory at the UWS Campbelltown Campus through raised by the Rotary Clubs of Campbelltown and Kosigaya (Japan) and the private sector. It is the only privately funded observbatory in any university in Australia. He was the Foundation Director of the Singapore Science Centre, one of the largest science centres in East Asia. He served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Science and Technology Centres, Washington. 

In January 2009 he was invited by the International Astronomical Union and UNESCO to give a paper on "Improving the scientific literacy of Aboriginal students through astronomy" at the international astronomy conference held at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris to commemorate the start of the worldwide International Year of Astronomy. He is in great demand for giving public lectures both in Australia and overseas. His astronomy work on OSETI was featured in the international magazine, Forbes which has a circulation of over 1 million copies worldwide. 

This information has been contributed by Doctor Bhathal.

Qualifications

  • PhD University of Queensland
  • BSc University of Singapore

Professional Memberships

  • Australian Institute of Physics (1998 - 2015)
  • Royal Society of NSW (1982 - 2015)

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Engineering and Construction Management

Contact

Email: R.Bhathal@westernsydney.edu.au
Phone: (02) 47360 834
Mobile:
Location: XB.G.26G
Penrith (Kingswood)
Website:

PLEASE NOTE: obtaining information from this Directory must be for the legitimate purposes of doing business with and within Western Sydney University, and must not be used for unsolicited bulk e-mailing (spamming) or similar purposes.

Publications

Books

  • Bhathal, R., Sutherland, R. and Butcher, H. (2013), 'Mount Stromlo Observatory: From Bush Observatory to the Nobel Prize', : CSIRO 9781486300754.
  • Young, H., Freedman, R., Ford, A. and Bhathal, R. (2010), 'University Physics', : Pearson 9781442517110.
  • Bhathal, R. (2010), 'Aboriginal Astronomy', : ARI 9780646541044.
  • Bhathal, R. (2010), 'Selected Documents in Aboriginal Astronomy', : ARI 9780646526645.
  • Bhathal, R. and Bhathal, J. (2006), 'Australian Backyard Astronomy', : National Library of Australia 0642276323.

Chapters in Books

  • Bhathal, R. (2011), 'The OZ OSETI Project', Communication with Extraterrestrial Intelligence, State University of New York Press 9781438437934.

Journal Articles

  • Bhathal, R. (2016), 'Australian astronomy is going global', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 57, no 1 , pp 31 - 33.
  • Bhathal, R. (2016), 'An appraisal of an online tutorial system for the teaching and learning of engineering physics in conjunction with contextual physics and mathematics, and relevant mathematics', European Journal of Engineering Education, vol 41, no 5 , pp 504 - 511.
  • Bhathal, R. (2015), 'How the US influenced Mount Stromlo', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 56, no 1 , pp 119 - 121.
  • Bhathal, R. (2014), 'Harvey Butcher : a passion for astronomical instrumentation', Journal of Astronomical Heritage and History, vol 17, no 3 , pp 339 - 351.
  • Bhathal, R. (2014), 'How Mount Stromlo Observatory shed its imperial beginnings', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 55, no 6 , pp 633 - 635.
  • Salamonson, Y., Weaver, R., Chang, S., Koch, J., Bhathal, R., Khoo, C. and Wilson, I. (2013), 'Learning approaches as predictors of academic performance in first year health and science students', Nurse Education Today, vol 33, no 7 , pp 729 - 733.
  • Bhathal, R. (2013), 'Some aspects of the scientific development and astronomical research of Warrick Couch', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 146, no 1 , pp 17 - 24.
  • Bhathal, R. (2013), 'Some aspects of the scientific development and astronomical research of Penny Sackett', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 146, no 449&450 , pp 142 - 152.
  • Bhathal, R. (2012), 'Profile : Brian Schmidt', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 53 , pp 113 - 115.
  • Bhathal, R. (2012), 'Australia and the transit of Venus', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 53, no 3 , pp 322 - 324.
  • Bhathal, R. (2012), 'Bernard Mills and Australian radio astronomy', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 53, no 2 , pp 219 - 221.
  • Bhathal, R. (2012), 'Some scientific aspects of Parramatta Observatory', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 145, no 445 & 446 , pp 111 - 127.
  • Bhathal, R. and Mason, T. (2011), 'Aboriginal astronomical sites, landscapes and paintings', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 52, no 4 , pp 412 - 416.
  • Bhathal, R. (2011), 'A Governor's observatory', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 52, no 2 , pp 231 - 233.
  • Bhathal, R. (2011), 'Retrospective perceptions and views of engineering students about physics and engineering practicals', European Journal of Engineering Education, vol 36, no 4 , pp 403 - 411.
  • Bhathal, R. (2011), 'The accelerating universe : a new view of the universe', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 144, no 3-4 , pp 83 - 90.
  • Bhathal, R., Sharma, M. and Mendez, A. (2010), 'Educational analysis of a first year engineering physics experiment on standing waves : based on the ACELL approach', European Journal of Physics, vol 31, no 1 , pp 23 - 35.
  • Bhathal, R. (2010), 'Australia's great comet hunter', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 51, no 1 , pp 23 - 25.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), '150 years of Sydney Observatory', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 50, no 3 , pp 27 - 30.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), 'Quasars and radio galaxies', Royal Society of New South Wales. Journal and Proceedings, vol 142, no 40575 , pp 57 - 61.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), 'Galaxies and the HI survey', Royal Society of New South Wales. Journal and Proceedings, vol 142, no 40575 , pp 63 - 68.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), 'Pre-contact astronomy', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 142, no 40636 , pp 15 - 23.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), 'Stellar astrophysics', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 142, no 40636 , pp 25 - 30.
  • Bhathal, R. (2008), 'Astronomy for Aboriginal students', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 49 , pp 27 - 29.
  • Bhathal, R. (2008), 'Profile : Matthew Colless', Astronomy and Geophysics, vol 49 , pp 6 - 18.
  • Bhathal, R. (2008), 'Searching for ETI', Journal and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New South Wales, vol 141 , pp 33 - 37.
  • Bhathal, R. (2007), 'Australian Astronomers : what made them great', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 48 , pp 533 - 536.
  • Bhathal, R. (2006), 'Astronomy in Aboriginal culture', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 47, no 5 , pp 527 - 53.
  • Wong, O., Ryan-Webber, E., Garcia-Appadoo, D., Bhathal, R., Stootman, F. and +30 Others, . (2006), 'The Northern HIPASS catalogue - data presentation, completeness and reliability measures', Royal Astronomical Society. Monthly Notices, vol 371, no 4 , pp 1855 - 1864.
  • Bhathal, R. (2006), 'Dreamtime astronomy', Australian Physics, vol 43, no 5 , pp 170 - 174.
  • Bhathal, R. (2005), 'Australian astronomy looks forward', Astronomy & Geophysics, vol 46, no 6 , pp 35 - 36.
  • Doyle, M., Drinkwater, M., Rhode, D., Pimbblet, K., Read, M., Meyer, M., Zwaan, M., Ryan-Webber, E., Stevens, J., Koribalski, B., Webster, R., Staveley-Smith, L., Barnes, D., Howlett, M., Kilborn, V., Waugh, M., Pierce, M., De Blok, W., Bhathal, R., Disney, M., Ekers, R., Freeman, K., Garcia, D., Gibson, B., Harnett, J., Henning, P., Jerjen, H., Kesteven, M., Knezek, P., Mader, S., Marquarding, M., Minchin, R., O'Brien, J., Oosterloo, T., Price, R., Putman, M., Ryder, S., Sadler, E., Stewart, I., Stootman, F. and Wright, A. (2005), 'The HIPASS catalogue - III. Optical counterparts and isolated dark galaxies', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol 361, no 1 , pp 34 - 44.
  • Bhathal, R., Stootman, F. and Plus 38 Others, . (2004), 'The 1000 brightest HIPASS galaxies: The HI properties', The Astronomical Journal, vol 128 , pp 16 - 46.
  • Bhathal, R., Stootman, F. and Plus 35 Others, . (2004), 'The HIPASS catalogue - I. Data presentation', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol 350 , pp 1195 - 1209.
  • Bhathal, R., Stootman, F. and Plus 35 Others, . (2004), 'The HIPASS catalogue - II. Completeness, reliability and parameter accuracy', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol 350 , pp 1210 - 1219.
  • Bhathal, R., Stootman, F., Waugh, M., Drinkwater, M., Webster, R. and Staveley-Smith, L. (2002), 'The large-scale distribution of nertal hydrogen in the Fornax region', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol 337 , pp 641 - 656.
  • Kilborn, V., Webster, R., Staveley-Smith, L., Marquarding, M., Bhathal, R. and Stootman, F. (2002), 'A catalog of HI selected galaxies from the south celestial cap region of sky', The Astronomical Journal, vol 124 , pp 690 - 705.
  • Putman, M., De Heij, V., Staveley-Smith, L., Braun, R., Bhathal, R. and Stootman, F. (2002), 'HIPASS high-velocity clouds: Properties of the compact and extended populations', The Astronomical Journal, vol 123 , pp 873 - 891.
  • Ryan-Weber, E., Koribalski, B., Stavely-Smith, L., Jerjen, H., Bhathal, R. and Stootman, F. (2002), 'The 1000 brightest HIPASS galaxies: Newly cataloged galaxies', The Astronomical Journal, vol 124 , pp 1954 - 1974.

Conference Papers

  • Bhathal, R. (2011), '', The Role of Astronomy in Society and Culture: Proceedings of the 260th International Astronomical Union Held at the UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France January 19-23, 2009, Paris, France.
  • Bhathal, R. (2010), 'The Australian Optical SETI Project', Astrobiology Science Conference, League City, Texas.
  • Bhathal, R. (2010), 'Physics Practicals for Engineering Students?', Creating ACTIVE Minds in our Science and Mathematics students : Proceedings of the 16th UniServe Science Annual Conference, University of Sydney.
  • Bhathal, R. (2009), 'Improving the scientific literacy of Aboriginal students through astronomy', IAU Symposium No. 260, 2009, UN Headquarters, Paris.
  • Bhathal, R. (2008), 'Microwave and optical SETI searches', Australian Institute of Physics (AIP) 18th National Congress, Adelaide, South Australia.
  • Bhathal, R. (2008), 'Antarctic astronomy', , .

Research

Dr Bhathal carries out research in nanosecond laser pulsed communications (OSETI), Astrophysics, Astronomical image analysis and processing, Astrophysics and Engineering Physics Education and Science Studies (Astrophysics, Physics, Aboriginal Astronomy). Lately has taken a keen interest in the teaching and learning that takes place in physics and engineering laboratories which is an area the university is now emphasising and is of growing importance in Australian universities. He also supervises the first year projects in physics for the Advanced Engineering students. His expertise in project management has been found to be very useful by students doing Professional Practice and Advanced Engineering Project 1.

This information has been contributed by Doctor Bhathal.

Western Sydney University

Locked Bag 1797
Penrith NSW 2751

Tel: +61 2 9852 5222

ABN 53 014 069 881
CRICOS Provider No: 00917k

Visit our mobile site