CSIRO Black Mountain laboratories.
Canberra: Black Mountain, ACT (Black Mountain laboratories)
CSIRO’s Black Mountain laboratories are the central research facilities of CSIRO Plant Industry, CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences and CSIRO Land and Water.
22 September 2009 | Updated 6 December 2013
Four CSIRO divisions are located at the CSIRO Black Mountain laboratories in Canberra:
- CSIRO Plant Industry
- CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
- CSIRO Land and Water
- CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research.
The site has extensive facilities to cater to a range of insect, plant, animal, atmospheric, land and water science including:
- plant growth facilities including glasshouses, controlled environment cabinets and tissue culture rooms
- laboratories for gene technology and other research
- Australia’s National Insect Collection, Australia’s National Herbarium and the National Soil Archive
- insect rearing facilities
- quarantine facilities.
CSIRO also has a field site located at Ginninderra Experiment Station that supports the research activities at Black Mountain.
Research first started at the Black Mountain site in Canberra around 1929 with the Divisions of Economic Botany (now Plant Industry) and Entomology first to come to Canberra.
The move brought scientists closer to politicians and bureaucrats helping to keep the awareness and profile of science high, a service the location still provides today.
The CSIRO divisions at Black Mountain undertake a range of research in plant science, insects (entomology) and issues that affect our land and water resources.
Our plant science on the site includes:
- wheat breeding
- plant based gene technology
- native plant biodiversity and conservation
- sustainable agriculture.
Our ecosystem sciences research covers:
- biological weed control
- invasive animals and invertebrates
- insects as sustainability indicators
- chemosensors to monitor food quality
- biosecurity and quarantine
- discovery of new compounds for industry and environment.
Our land and water scientists research:
- dryland and irrigation farming systems
- environmental sensing, predication & reporting
- water quality and environmental flows
- aquatic ecology
- water resources.
Our atmospheric research here includes:
CSIRO Black Mountain laboratories in Canberra have facilities servicing insect, animal, plant, atmospheric, land and water science.
- energy, water and biogeochemical cycles
- space science and applications
- observation of the earth's surface, oceans and atmosphere.
Around 1000 staff work at CSIRO Black Mountain laboratories including:
- 500 at CSIRO Plant Industry
- 260 at CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
- 190 at CSIRO Land and Water
- 30 CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research.
- plant breeders
- plant pathologists
- gene technology scientists
- land and soil scientists
- remote sensing
- scientific economists
- atmospheric researchers
The CSIRO Black Mountain laboratories includes CSIRO Discovery, an exhibition and education centre, showcasing CSIRO's achievements. CSIRO Discovery is open to the public daily.
The Canberra CSIRO Science Education Centre, The Green Machine, is also located here providing interactive science education programs to schools and school groups. It also provides teacher professional development courses.
Tours of the site and an opportunity to meet our scientists may be available for special interest groups and every so often we hold open days.
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Learn about CSIRO's research into Food and Agriculture.