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Phase transitions in the diffuse ISM workshop

Updated 2014 January 23

Conference photo



Individual talks are available here. All talks (including movies) are available as one .tgz file here (782 MB).

25-27 November 2013, Hideaway Retreat, Wentworth Falls, NSW, Australia

CSIRO Astronomy & Space Science is holding a workshop on phase transitions in the diffuse interstellar medium.

The motivation for the meeting is to synthesise new observational and numerical work which place us in a strong position to address broad issues related to cold gas in the diffuse ISM. This meeting will bring together observers and modellers to focus primarily on the following scientific questions:

1. What is the distribution of temperatures and pressures in atomic hydrogen?
2. Under what conditions do star-forming clouds form out of the diffuse ISM?

The workshop will be very interactive, we will divide the day into talks reporting about the data sets (observational and numerical) that we have available to address these questions, leaving time on each day for collaboration and data exploration. The overall goal is to come away from the workshop with plans for collaborative numerical and observational research projects.

Final Program (PDF)

Abstracts and questions (PDF)

Important Dates

  • Abstract and Registration submission deadline: Friday, 18 October 2013 (passed)
  • Conference dates: Opening reception and barbecue at 18:30 Sunday evening 24 November, then Monday 25 — Wednesday 27 November 2013
    Note that we will schedule full days on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and we have the retreat reserved including breakfast on Thursday morning.


Registration is free. The workshop costs, including lunch, morning and afternoon teas, will be covered covered by a CSIRO Newton Turner Award.

Accommodation is at the Hideaway Retreat. We have booked the entire retreat for the meeting, Sunday through Wednesday nights inclusive. Accommodation will cost $120/night, which will be paid to CSIRO Astronomy & Space Science by major credit card. We will request credit card details when we announce the program. Please do not book directly with the hotel, as we have fully booked the hotel for conference participants.

Registered participants, please email alex.hill at by Sunday 10 November:

  1. A title and short abstract (if you wish to give a talk)
  2. (Approximately) three questions to act as a starting point for discussion. If you identify as a theorist, at least one question should be for observers; if you identify as an observer, at least one question should be for theorists.


The meeting will be held at the Hideaway Retreat in the Blue Mountains near Sydney. The retreat is in Wentworth Falls, about a 500 metre walk from the Wentworth Falls train station. Maps are available at the retreat's web site.

It takes 2-2.5 hours to get there by train from Sydney. If going straight from the airport, take the train from the airport to Central, then change at Central for a Blue Mountains line train, which will be on the "Intercity" platforms (platforms 3-16). There are clear signs, and then TV monitors tell you which platform your train is on, or ask staff. Most Blue Mountains trains terminate at "Lithgow" or "Mount Victoria"; any train for either of those stations will work. Commuter trains run every hour from Central Station at most times of the day; see for schedules.

On Tuesday afternoon, for those who are interested, we will go on a bushwalk in Blue Mountains National Park, likely on the National Pass Trail. Interested participants should bring a pair of sneakers/trainers.

Before or after the meeting, participants are welcome to spend time at the CASS/ATNF offices in Marsfield, Sydney (located at the Corner of Vimiera & Pembroke Roads, Marsfield NSW 2122, Australia)

View Larger Map

[Note: The address shown (42 Pembroke street) in google maps will lead you to the ATNF cottage beside the offices]

The ATNF Visitor's Guide is a useful starting point for new visitors to the ATNF site.

Confirmed Participants

  • Michael Burton (UNSW)
  • Joanne Dawson (CSIRO)
  • John Dickey (University of Tasmania)
  • Christoph Federrath (Monash University)
  • Steven Gibson (University of Western Kentucky)
  • Anne Green (University of Sydney)
  • Jonathan Heiner (UNAM)
  • Carl Heiles (University of California, Berkeley)
  • Chris Herron (University of Sydney)
  • Alex Hill (CSIRO)
  • Di Li (NAOC)
  • Bob Lindner (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
  • Naomi McClure-Griffiths (CSIRO)
  • Vanessa Moss (University of Sydney)
  • Clare Murray (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
  • Eva Ntormousi (CEA)
  • David Rebolledo (University of Sydney)
  • Snezana Stanimirovic (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
  • Jennifer Stone (Nagoya University)
  • Enrique Vazquez-Semadeni


  • Joanne Dawson
  • Alex Hill
  • Naomi McClure-Griffiths

Contact us

Please email Alex Hill