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Tiny magnets solving big problems in cancer and computing

Australian Institute of Physics 2 mins read

Available for interview: Women in Physics Lecturer Dr Karen Livesey is in Hobart to give a free public talk on the future of nano-magnets on Friday 22 September

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Tiny nano-magnets, 1,000 times thinner than a human hair, are being used to treat inoperable tumours and improve health outcomes, reduce the energy that computers use, and even to develop self-repairing paints.

Dr Karen Livesey

Dr Karen Livesey, a theoretical physicist from The University of Newcastle, is designing these new nano-sized magnets. She’s taking her knowledge to public audiences around the country, on the Australian Institute of Physics’ Women in Physics Lecture Tour 2023. 

The Tour arrives in Tasmania this week, with Karen delivering talks at schools, and a public lecture at the University of Tasmania on Friday 22 September at 6:30PM.

The Women in Physics Lecture Tour celebrates the contribution of women to physics, and aims to inspire the next generation in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

Karen was the first in her family to finish high school and went on to study physics at the University of Western Australia, completing a PhD in 2010. For almost 10 years, she worked at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs reaching the rank of Associate Professor.

While the COVID-19 pandemic was raging in 2020, she moved to Newcastle, NSW, with her family.

In addition to being named the 2023 Women in Physics Lecturer by the Australian Institute of Physics, Karen is also a Superstar of STEM for 2023-24 – an initiative by Science and Technology Australia to challenge gendered assumptions about who can be a scientist.

Event details:

Karen will be giving a free public talk about nano-particles on Friday 22 September at the University of Tasmania (Sandy Bay Campus, Lecture Theatre 1, UTAS Physics Building), 6:30PM or via Zoom.
All are welcome, from ages 8+.

Details at:


For interview: Karen Livesey, 0406 243 422

Media contact: Laura Boland, 0408 166 426


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