David Coward

Associate Professor, BSc Murd., PhD W.Aust., Science Director Zadko Telescope

  • The University of Western Australia (M013), 35 Stirling Highway, Room 2.63, Physics Building, Perth campus

    6009 Perth


  • Source: Scopus
  • Calculated using citation counts from Scopus for publications in the UWA Profiles and Research Repository
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Personal profile


His early work on gravitational waves focused on modelling and simulation of gravitational wave background noise. This work evolved in new directions, including the development of a new data analysis algorithm that uses records of the temporal and spatial pattern of rare events in data to predict the occurrence of even rarer events. The methods found novel applications well beyond their original focus, such as predicting the occurrence of very bright gamma ray bursts.

Coward has received a broad mentorship that reflects his refusal to be restricted to a single research niche.

In 2004, Coward took the bold step of branching out into gamma ray burst and optical transient astronomy, receiving mentorship from experts in this field including the highly cited Tsvi Piran. Following this Coward received mentorship from B. Schmidt, UWA ICRA leaders, and a team of leading French astronomers, Boer and Klotz, for the installation and operation of the Zadko Telescope (Australia’s premier facility for gamma ray burst follow-up).
Coward is a member of the LIGO Scientific Community (burst group), and participates in the E.M. follow-up of gravitational wave events as an “advocate” and is named on an MoU for a joint France/Zadko follow-up. He is also named as an investigator on the high-energy detector satellite mission XMM-Newton. In 2013, Coward was invited to collaborate with the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Antarctic astronomy. This allowed access to optical data from robotic telescopes (AST3) operating at Dome C Antarctica.

Roles and responsibilities

Research leader:

Science Director Zadko telescope (http://www.zt.science.uwa.edu.au/)

In 2006, Coward commenced work as project manager and lead scientist for managing the construction, installation and commissioning of the UWA Zadko Telescope. Coward led the Australian team that is working in partnership with French astronomers to establish a network of robotic telescopes (Zadko is the Australian node), for multi-messenger astronomy.
The facility plays a niche role in Australian astronomy, as it is the only meter class optical facility in Australia dedicated to automated follow-up imaging of alerts or triggers received from different external instruments/detectors spanning the entire electromagnetic spectrum.

Funding overview

Coward and has team has received over $1 Million in funding from the National and State Governments.

Current projects

Coward is a CI on the ARC center of excellence for Gravitational Astronomy (OzGrav)


His core project is gravitational wave data analysis and gamma ray bursts

AS Science Director of the Gingin-based Zadko telescope, Coward has enabled many other research projects, including the follow-up of solar system bodies from the Gaia satellite, rare asteroid shape reconstruction using Zadko photometry, coincident optical and radio (MWA) observations of flare stars to name but a few.

Coward is also a contributing member of LIGO, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (https://www.ligo.caltech.edu/)

Teaching overview

2019 (upcoming)

Course co-ordinator: SCIE1122_SUM_CR




Course co-ordinator: SCIE1122 Our Solar System

2015 -2018:
Electricity (first year)
Special Relativity (first year)

Research interests

Research expertise keywords

  • Astronomy
  • Astrophysics
  • Gamma ray bursts
  • Data analysis
  • Gravitational waves
  • Seismic studies


Dive into the research topics where David Coward is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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  • A Flare-type IV Burst Event from Proxima Centauri and Implications for Space Weather

    Zic, A., Murphy, T., Lynch, C., Heald, G., Lenc, E., Kaplan, D. L., Cairns, I. H., Coward, D., Gendre, B., Johnston, H., MacGregor, M., Price, D. C. & Wheatland, M. S., 10 Dec 2020, In : Astrophysical Journal. 905, 1, 23.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • A guide to LIGO-Virgo detector noise and extraction of transient gravitational-wave signals

    (The LIGO Scientific Collaboration and the Virgo Collaboration), 6 Feb 2020, In : Classical and Quantum Gravity. 37, 5, 055002.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
    23 Citations (Scopus)
  • A Joint Fermi-GBM and LIGO/Virgo Analysis of Compact Binary Mergers from the First and Second Gravitational-wave Observing Runs

    LIGO Scientific Collaboration and Virgo Collaboration, 20 Apr 2020, In : Astrophysical Journal. 893, 2, 100.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
    2 Citations (Scopus)
  • FRIPON: A worldwide network to track incoming meteoroids

    Colas, F., Zanda, B., Bouley, S., Jeanne, S., Malgoyre, A., Birlan, M., Blanpain, C., Gattacceca, J., Jorda, L., Lecubin, J., Marmo, C., Rault, J. L., Vaubaillon, J., Vernazza, P., Yohia, C., Gardiol, D., Nedelcu, A., Poppe, B., Rowe, J., Forcier, M. & 375 others, Koschny, D., Trigo-Rodriguez, J. M., Lamy, H., Behrend, R., Ferrière, L., Barghini, D., Buzzoni, A., Carbognani, A., Di Carlo, M., Di Martino, M., Knapic, C., Londero, E., Pratesi, G., Rasetti, S., Riva, W., Stirpe, G. M., Valsecchi, G. B., Volpicelli, C. A., Zorba, S., Coward, D., Drolshagen, E., Drolshagen, G., Hernandez, O., Jehin, E., Jobin, M., King, A., Nitschelm, C., Ott, T., Sanchez-Lavega, A., Toni, A., Abraham, P., Affaticati, F., Albani, M., Andreis, A., Andrieu, T., Anghel, S., Antaluca, E., Antier, K., Appéré, T., Armand, A., Ascione, G., Audureau, Y., Auxepaules, G., Avoscan, T., Baba Aissa, D., Bacci, P., Bǎdescu, O., Baldini, R., Baldo, R., Balestrero, A., Baratoux, D., Barbotin, E., Bardy, M., Basso, S., Bautista, O., Bayle, L. D., Beck, P., Bellitto, R., Belluso, R., Benna, C., Benammi, M., Beneteau, E., Benkhaldoun, Z., Bergamini, P., Bernardi, F., Bertaina, M. E., Bessin, P., Betti, L., Bettonvil, F., Bihel, D., Birnbaum, C., Blagoi, O., Blouri, E., Boacǎ, I., Boatǎ, R., Bobiet, B., Bonino, R., Boros, K., Bouchet, E., Borgeot, V., Bouchez, E., Boust, D., Boudon, V., Bouman, T., Bourget, P., Brandenburg, S., Bramond, P., Braun, E., Bussi, A., Cacault, P., Caillier, B., Calegaro, A., Camargo, J., Caminade, S., Campana, A. P. C., Campbell-Burns, P., Canal-Domingo, R., Carell, O., Carreau, S., Cascone, E., Cattaneo, C., Cauhape, P., Cavier, P., Celestin, S., Cellino, A., Champenois, M., Chennaoui Aoudjehane, H., Chevrier, S., Cholvy, P., Chomier, L., Christou, A., Cricchio, D., Coadou, P., Cocaign, J. Y., Cochard, F., Cointin, S., Colombi, E., Colque Saavedra, J. P., Corp, L., Costa, M., Costard, F., Cottier, M., Cournoyer, P., Coustal, E., Cremonese, G., Cristea, O., Cuzon, J. C., D'agostino, G., Daiffallah, K., Dǎnescu, C., Dardon, A., Dasse, T., Davadan, C., Debs, V., Defaix, J. P., Deleflie, F., D'elia, M., De Luca, P., De Maria, P., Deverchère, P., Devillepoix, H., Dias, A., Di Dato, A., Di Luca, R., Dominici, F. M., Drouard, A., Dumont, J. L., Dupouy, P., Duvignac, L., Egal, A., Erasmus, N., Esseiva, N., Ebel, A., Eisengarten, B., Federici, F., Feral, S., Ferrant, G., Ferreol, E., Finitzer, P., Foucault, A., Francois, P., Frîncu, M., Froger, J. L., Gaborit, F., Gagliarducci, V., Galard, J., Gardavot, A., Garmier, M., Garnung, M., Gautier, B., Gendre, B., Gerard, D., Gerardi, A., Godet, J. P., Grandchamps, A., Grouiez, B., Groult, S., Guidetti, D., Giuli, G., Hello, Y., Henry, X., Herbreteau, G., Herpin, M., Hewins, P., Hillairet, J. J., Horak, J., Hueso, R., Huet, E., Huet, S., Hyaumé, F., Interrante, G., Isselin, Y., Jeangeorges, Y., Janeux, P., Jeanneret, P., Jobse, K., Jouin, S., Jouvard, J. M., Joy, K., Julien, J. F., Kacerek, R., Kaire, M., Kempf, M., Koschny, D., Krier, C., Kwon, M. K., Lacassagne, L., Lachat, D., Lagain, A., Laisné, E., Lanchares, V., Laskar, J., Lazzarin, M., Leblanc, M., Lebreton, J. P., Lecomte, J., Le Dû, P., Lelong, F., Lera, S., Leoni, J. F., Le-Pichon, A., Le-Poupon, P., Leroy, A., Leto, G., Levansuu, A., Lewin, E., Lienard, A., Licchelli, D., Locatelli, H., Loehle, S., Loizeau, D., Luciani, L., Maignan, M., Manca, F., Mancuso, S., Mandon, E., Mangold, N., Mannucci, F., Maquet, L., Marant, D., Marchal, Y., Marin, J. L., Martin-Brisset, J. C., Martin, D., Mathieu, D., Maury, A., Mespoulet, N., Meyer, F., Meyer, J. Y., Meza, E., Moggi Cecchi, V., Moiroud, J. J., Millan, M., Montesarchio, M., Misiano, A., Molinari, E., Molau, S., Monari, J., Monflier, B., Monkos, A., Montemaggi, M., Monti, G., Moreau, R., Morin, J., Mourgues, R., Mousis, O., Nablanc, C., Nastasi, A., Niacşu, L., Notez, P., Ory, M., Pace, E., Paganelli, M. A., Pagola, A., Pajuelo, M., Palacián, J. F., Pallier, G., Paraschiv, P., Pardini, R., Pavone, M., Pavy, G., Payen, G., Pegoraro, A., Peña-Asensio, E., Perez, L., Pérez-Hoyos, S., Perlerin, V., Peyrot, A., Peth, F., Pic, V., Pietronave, S., Pilger, C., Piquel, M., Pisanu, T., Poppe, M., Portois, L., Prezeau, J. F., Pugno, N., Quantin, C., Quitté, G., Rambaux, N., Ravier, E., Repetti, U., Ribas, S., Richard, C., Richard, D., Rigoni, M., Rivet, J. P., Rizzi, N., Rochain, S., Rojas, J. F., Romeo, M., Rotaru, M., Rotger, M., Rougier, P., Rousselot, P., Rousset, J., Rousseu, D., Rubiera, O., Rudawska, R., Rudelle, J., Ruguet, J. P., Russo, P., Sales, S., Sauzereau, O., Salvati, F., Schieffer, M., Schreiner, D., Scribano, Y., Selvestrel, D., Serra, R., Shengold, L., Shuttleworth, A., Smareglia, R., Sohy, S., Soldi, M., Stanga, R., Steinhausser, A., Strafella, F., Sylla Mbaye, S., Smedley, A. R. D., Tagger, M., Tanga, P., Taricco, C., Teng, J. P., Tercu, J. O., Thizy, O., Thomas, J. P., Tombelli, M., Trangosi, R., Tregon, B., Trivero, P., Tukkers, A., Turcu, V., Umbriaco, G., Unda-Sanzana, E., Vairetti, R., Valenzuela, M., Valente, G., Varennes, G., Vauclair, S., Vergne, J., Verlinden, M., Vidal-Alaiz, M., Vieira-Martins, R., Viel, A., Vîntdevarǎ, D. C., Vinogradoff, V., Volpini, P., Wendling, M., Wilhelm, P., Wohlgemuth, K., Yanguas, P., Zagarella, R. & Zollo, A., Dec 2020, In : Astronomy and Astrophysics. 644, A53.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
    1 Citation (Scopus)
  • Gravitational-wave Constraints on the Equatorial Ellipticity of Millisecond Pulsars

    LIGO Scientific Collaboration and Virgo Collaboration, 10 Oct 2020, In : Astrophysical Journal Letters. 902, 1, L21.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
    6 Citations (Scopus)
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