The Edward Corbould Research Fund (ECRF) of the Astronomical Association of Queensland (AAQ) was established in 1987 with a grant of $50,000 from Edward Corbould, a property developer in the Queensland Sunshine Coast area. The purpose of this fund is to support astronomical research projects by amateur astronomers and tertiary students. Grants are provided from the investment income of the fund, and will only be offered if the fund attains a certain level of growth each year.

Grants may be offered after 2018

The Astronomical Association of Queensland (AAQ) announced a successful ECRF grant at the April 2017 Ordinary General Meeting of the AAQ. The successful applicant was notified by email and funds disbursed by the AAQ Treasurer in July 2017. 

In November 2017 the Astronomical Association of Queensland (AAQ) decided that grants from the Edward Corbould Research Fund (ECRF) would be not be offered in 2018 to allow fund earnings to grow as per the guidelines for the fund's operation. 

The ECRF has been established to encourage and assist astronomical research, rather than simple data-gathering. Projects in any field of astronomy are considered. Projects must comprise observational research which has a clearly defined objective and timeline, adds to the body of knowledge, and is appropriate for publication. Funds may be requested to support any aspect of the research including appropriate equipment (excluding office equipment and items which form an inherent part of a larger whole such as telescope mirrors), consumable items or essential travel but excluding personal remuneration. Applications for funding solely for travel to conferences or for planning research will not be considered.

An application is required be in the form of a research proposal and include the following:

  • A statement of the aims and hypotheses of the project.
  • Details of the proposed methodology including analysis of the data to be collected.
  • A timeline for the project.
  • An itemised list of proposed expenditure including justification of each item and a ranking of the items in terms of priority: 1 – those essential for the project; 2 – those considered necessary to maintain a reasonable rate of progress to bring the project to completion; 3 – other items which would be useful in supporting the project.
  • A short CV of the applicant including relevant astronomical experience.
  • A letter of support for the project from a scientist working in the field covered by the proposal.
  • A review of the relevant scientific literature, supported by a list of references.

Further details on the requirements can be found in the PDF ECRF 2017 Grant Applications Guide.

Applicants were required to use the ECRF Application form 2017 for making an ECRF Grant submission. There is a PDF version here and a Microsoft Word 2010 version here.

The signed copy of the application was required to be sent by post or scanned and lodged via email to the General Secretary of the AAQ at the address below by 28th February 2017. Sufficient biographical and project information had to be provided to allow the Research Committee to determine if the recipient is capable of achieving the project's aims and the project is scientifically worthwhile. Applicants requesting more than one item of equipment or consumables had to provide a list of priorities showing which items are essential and which could be left to a subsequent year.

Applications are reviewed by the AAQ Research Committee which makes recommendations to the AAQ Council. If, in the Research Committee's opinion, no worthy project is proposed in any year then no funds will be granted for that year.

Applicants must be Australian citizens. Successful applicants who are not members of the AAQ are required to join the AAQ before funds can be disbursed and must remain members during the period of the grant. The current membership fees are published in our Membership Pack. Successful applicants who are not already AAQ members will be advised in time so that they may make membership applications to be received by the General Secretary prior to 1st June for subsequent election to membership at the June 2016 Council Meeting.

Successful applicants must submit annual project progress reports to the General Secretary to be printed in the AAQ Annual Proceedings over the life of the project up to a maximum of 7 years. They must also provide evidence to the General Secretary of the expenditure of the grant in the form of receipts, photographs etc.

Equipment purchased under the ECRF grant remains the property of the AAQ. If the project is of limited duration the equipment is to be either returned to the AAQ or the applicant may purchase the equipment from the AAQ at its depreciated value. Equipment is depreciated at a rate of 20% per annum after the first twelve months with the equipment written off after a 7 year period. Where the equipment is lost, stolen or damaged during the grant recipient’s custodianship, the recipient must so advise the Council as soon as possible.  The Council reserves the right to ask the recipient to make a contribution to the repair or replacement of the items.

Contact the General Secretary for further details or enquiries.


The General Secretary,
Astronomical Association of Queensland,
PO Box 6101,
St Lucia QLD. 4067.