George Hobbs' home page

Address: Room 95, CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, PO Box 76, Epping, NSW, 1710, Australia
Position: research scientist, team leader
Phone: +61 2 9372 4652








I am currently the lead for the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array project. This project has three primary goals: (1) to detect ultra-low-frequency gravitational waves using pulsars, (2) to create a pulsar-based time scale and (3) to use pulsars to search for unknown objects in our solar system.  Details are available on our webpage and in our initial data release paper.

I am the science lead for the PULSE@Parkes outreach project.  As part of this project, high-school students around the World carry out observations of pulsars using the Parkes radio telescope.  The observations have led to refereed publications and are also used by the students to carry out school projects.  Our webpage relating to this project is here. 

The CSIRO data archive is currently dominated by archival observations of pulsars from the Parkes telescope.  This is the largest archive of pulsar data world-wide and is being used for multiple research projects.  Whereas we previously lost significant amounts of pulsar data, we now have a modern archiving system. We are currently exploring how to link this archive with high performance supercomputing systems.

I enjoy computing projects and have developed the tempo2, psrcat, ptasimulate and pfits software packages that are in common use in the pulsar community.

Highlights of my research to date include:

  • development of the tempo2 software package (2006MNRAS.369..655H)
  • using a new algorithm to find new pulsars in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae (2016MNRAS.459L..26P)
  • writing the first paper using the ASKAP telescope to search for radio transient events (2016MNRAS.456.3948H)
  • being involved in the most stringent limit to date on the amplitude of ultra-low-frequency gravitational waves (2015Sci...349.1522S)
  • describing how pulsar observations can be used to navigate space craft (2013AdSpR..52.1602D)
  • developing the first high-precision pulsar-based time standard (2012MNRAS.427.2780H)
  • showing how to carry out pulsar timing in the presence of correlated noise (2011MNRAS.418..561C)
  • providing a precise mass of the Jovian system using pulsars (2010ApJ...720L.201C)


A link to my list of publications sorted by citation number is available here.  As of Februrary 2017, I have a total of 9452 citations in around 180 publications. My top-cited paper has 1150 citations and I have 26 papers with more than 100 citations. My H-factor is 48.


I have supervised (or co-supervised) numerous students for all or parts of their projects and currently lead the CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science graduate student program.  An (incomplete) list of my students is given below:

Date Topic Student
2016+ CSIRO Indigenous cadetship Aaron Annuscheit
2013 Work experience from University of Texas at Brownsville studying profiles of the PPTA pulsars Alberto Mata
2010/2011 CSIRO summer vacation student developing PULSE@Parkes modules Alexander Matthews
2009-2010 CSIRO summer vacation student on image processing methods Andrew Cameron
2010/2011 Honours project work on detecting pulsars in continuum images Andrew Cameron (UNSW)
2016 Macquarie University work experience Brendan Orenstein (Macquarie University)
2016/2017 CSIRO summer vacation student on PULSE@Parkes for undergraduates Brendan Orenstein (Macquarie University)
2015 Supported part of PhD on "A study of spatial correlations in pulsar timing array data" Caterina Tiburzi (Osservatorio Astronomico di Cagliari)
2007 CSIRO summer vacation student Chaitanya Shettigara
2013/2016 PhD on pulsar timing array research Dai Shi (Peking University)
2012/2013 CSIRO summer vacation student on gravitational waves Daniel Reardon 
2014/now PhD on pulsar timing array research Daniel Reardon (Monash university)
2016 Macquarie work experience project Daniel Surcuic (Macquarie University)
2009-2013 PhD on searching for gravitational waves Daniel Yardley (University of Sydney)
2011/2015 PhD on using pulsars to navigate spacecraft Deng Xinping (Chinese Space Science Institute)
2014/2015 Supported part of PhD on versatile searches for gravitational waves Dustin Madison (Cornell University)
2017+ Engineering internship on pulsar navigation Drishya Sundaram
  PhD, gravitational wave memory Jingbo Wang (Xingjiang Astronomical Observatory)
2011/2012 CSIRO summer vacation student on "Searching for new solar system objects" John Lopez
2012 Co-supervised part of PhD on CU Virginis Kitty Lo (University of Sydney)
2012/2017 CSIRO Indigenous cadetship working on various projects Kobi Zamora-Pullin
2016 Macquarie University work experience Kristina Kopychynski
2016 Macquarie University work experience Lachlan Marnoch
2016 Masters project Lei Zhang (NAOC)
2017+ PhD, pulsars and FAST Lei Zhang (NAOC)
2015/2016 Co-supervised part of PhD on pulsar proper motions Lin Li (Xingjiang Astronomical Observatory)
2013/2014 CSIRO summer vacation student project on PSR J1717-4054 Mitchell Kicynski
2016/2017 Honours project on the solar wind Niu Zexi (Beijing Normal University)
2004/2005 CSIRO summer vacation student on global fitting algorithms Shekhar Chandra
2010/2014 PhD on high precision pulsar timing Stefan Oslowski (Swinburne University of Technology)
2017+ PhD on fast radio bursts Songbo Zhang
2010 Work experience student from USA Stephanie Douglas (Franklin & Marshall)
2011-2015 PhD on gravitational waves Vikram Ravi (University of Melbourne)
2010 Honours project on transient sources Vikram Ravi (ANU)
2009/2010 CSIRO summer vacation student Vikram Ravi (ANU)
2010 Work experience student Will Kunert (Oberlin college)
2012/2015 PhD on single gravitational wave sources Xingjiang Zhu (University of Western Australia)
2015 Support part of PhD on pulsar searching Zhichen Pan (NAOC)



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