2019 SAAO Prize Scholarship for African PhD student

Deadline: July 31, 2019.

The SAAO Prize Scholarship is a prestigious annually awarded scholarship offered to a top African student to work on a PhD project supervised by researchers at the SAAO. The scholarship is for a 3-year PhD registered at a South African university and the student will be required to spend a minimum of 60% of their time at the SAAO. The scholarship will cover tuition and a generous stipend for living expenses. Additional support for conference travel and equipment will be provided.



  • Mass Loss, Pulsation and Atmospheric Mixing in Intermediate Mass Stars
    Supervisors: John Menzies (jwm@saao.ac.za), Patricia Whitelock (SAAO and UCT; paw@saao.ac.za) : Project details
  • 3D Simulations of Stellar Interactions
    Supervisor: Shazrene Mohamed (shazrene@saao.ac.za): Project details
  • Planetary and substellar companions to Planetary nebulae and other post-AGB stars
    Supervisors: Brent Miszalski (brent@saao.ac.za) and Rajeev Manick (rajeev@saao.ac.za): Project details
  • Transients in the LSST Era
    Supervisors: David Buckley (dibnob@saao.ac.za), Patrick Woudt (UCT; pwoudt@ast.uct.ac.za), and Brian
    van Soelen (UFS; VanSoelenB@ufs.ac.za): Project details
  • Vertical structure evolution of spiral galaxy disks using optical and near-infrared
    integral field spectroscopy
    Supervisors: Matthew Bershady (mab@saao.ac.za): Project details
  • Design, development and commissioning of a fibre slit-mask integral-field unit for
    SALT prime-focus spectrograph
    Supervisors: Matthew Bershady (mab@saao.ac.za): Project details



1. The scholarship is currently open to South Africans or citizens of other African countries who hold, or are studying towards, an MSc degree in physics, astrophysics, or a closely related area (ideally with some astronomy background).

2. Must be ready to register for a PhD at the start of the 2020 academic year (typically the end of February 2020).



Funding Amount: R180,000 per year (plus support for tuition, equipment and travel).



1. Send your CV, motivation, academic transcript to scholarship@saao.ac.za and arrange for 2 reference letters to be sent to the same address by the closing date.

2. You are strongly encouraged to contact potential supervisors to discuss the project before applying. Contact scholarship@saao.ac.za if you have further queries.




Click here to apply

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