Associate Professor Joan Vaccaro, Head of Physics in the GriffithSchool of Biomolecular and Physical Sciences, has been elected as a Fellow of the Institute of Physics based in the UK.

With more than 50,000 members world-wide, the Institute is a leading scientific society dedicated to advancing physics education, research and application.

Associate Professor Vaccaro said she was honoured to join the Institute as a Fellow.

“I have been exploring some really quite deep issues in quantum physics, and my election means the Institute approves of what I’ve been doing. That’s a nice feeling!”

Pro Vice Chancellor of SEET, Professor Debra Henly said the Fellowship was a fitting tribute.

“I congratulate Joan on this well-deserved recognition of her contributions to physics,” Professor Henly said.

In addition to being Head of Physics in the School of Biomolecular and Physical Sciences, Joan is also a Chief Investigator at Griffith’s Centre for Quantum Dynamics.

Associate Professor Vaccaro was educated at Griffith during the 1980’s and her PhD degree in theoretical quantum optics was awarded in 1990.She then spent 12 years working at universities in the UK and Germany before returning to Griffith University in 2005.

Her research now extends to include coherent phenomena in laser-cooled gases, robust states of open quantum systems, ultra cold quantum gases (Bose-Einstein condensation), superselection rules and entanglement, quantum data security, quantum information processing and more recently, the physics of time.