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My digital career: Paulo de Souza

Professor Paulo de Souza's micro-sensors have been used by NASA onboard two Mars Rovers.

[Music plays and a split circle appears with photos in each half of the circle flashing through of various CSIRO activities and the circle then morphs into the CSIRO logo]

[Image changes to show world globe slowly rotating and then the image changes to show a photo of the surface of the Earth from Space]

Professor Paulo de Souza: Are we alone with the universe? What are the conditions that we have to sustain life on earth?

[Image changes to show the planet Mars in Space]

What happened on Mars that was different?

[Image changes to show Paulo de Souza watching a Spaceship video]

Since a young age I was fascinated about Space.

[Image changes to show Paulo’s hand picking up a very tiny circuit board and the camera zooms in on the board]

I had a chance to be part of a team that was developing Space technologies so I jumped in.

[Image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera and the camera zooms in as he talks]

Two years after I was already seeing my instrument landing on the surface of Mars with the Mars exploration rovers.

[Image changes to show Paulo looking up and the colour of the screen gradually turns to blue and text appears: My Digital Career, Prof Paulo de Souza]

My name is Paulo de Souza.

[Images move through of Paulo giving a lecture in an auditorium, the audience listening, a close view of Paulo giving the lecture, and then Paulo talking to the camera]

I am a Professor at Griffith University. So, I love science so much.

[Camera zooms in on Paulo talking, and the image changes to show Paulo in conversation, and then the image changes to show Paulo holding a metal object and turning it around]

I’m a physicist by training, but I did a lot of courses in engineering, computer science, chemistry.

[Image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera]

So, it’s difficult to put me in a box.

[Images move through of Paulo using a microscope, Paulo standing at a podium, and then Paulo talking to the camera]

STEM for me was like a passport and I travelled the whole world.

[Images move through of a female sitting on a rock using a laptop, beekeepers looking at hives, a close view of a male looking at a bee frame with bees, a male with an AUV, Paulo next to a Rover]

Your office, it will be out there in the forest, in the parks, in the ocean.

[Images move through to show a rocket blasting off, then a piece of equipment on the surface of Mars, and then a microchip strapped to a bee’s back]

You can build instruments that will work on the surface of Mars, or will be working on the back of a small bee.

[Image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera and then images flash through of various scientists at work in different situations]

Science can take you anywhere and that’s the beauty of what we’re doing.

[Music plays and images continues to flash through of scientists at work, and then the image changes to show an astronaut, and then images move through of the surface of Mars]

Mars is a place that is rich in iron, has eight times more iron than we have here on Earth.

[Image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera and then the image changes to show the planet Mars in Space]

The objective of our mission was to discover if Mars was once wet.

[Image changes to show a slide showing three views of Mars in Space and text appears: Water on Mars, Past, Present, Future]

Were there oceans on Mars?

[Image changes to show a landscape on Mars and then the image changes to show a Rover moving over the surface of Mars]

Well I can’t go physically to Mars but I can send a sensor.

[Image changes to show Paulo looking at a tiny instrument, and the camera zooms in on the instrument in his hands, and then the image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera]

My instrument is an instrument that allows you to see those minerals that contain iron.

[Image changes to show the Curiosity Rover on Mars, and then the image changes to show a split screen with the Rover in operation on the right, and a digital image of Mars’ surface on the left]

So, it’s like an iron special glasses that you have and it was able to be sitting on the robotic arm of a rover and select targets where we could analyse those rocks

[Image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera, and the camera zooms in and then the image changes to show Mars in Space, and then the image changes to show a planet surrounded by rings]

and through that process understand the evolution of that planet, and understand evolution of our solar system.

[Music plays and images move through of a female looking at a diagram of a piece of equipment on a screen, Paulo looking at a 3D model on a computer screen, and Paulo talking to the camera]

My career is a digital career.

[Images flash through of digital images, Paulo looking through a circuit board, Paulo watching a male use a laser measuring device, the Rover on Mars, and Paulo talking to the camera]

Digital has enabled me to do so much, getting data from spacecraft sitting somewhere in another planet,

[Image changes to show a close view of a male looking at a bee, and then the image changes to show Paulo looking at beehives with a colleague]

or looking at data coming from insects in the forest.

[Image changes to show Paulo and colleagues looking at a 3D model and talking together and then the image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera]

Without digital technologies I would be not the scientist that I am today.

[Images flash through of Paulo giving a presentation, and then the audience listening]

Digital skills are incredibly important for any professional.

[Image changes to show Paulo talking, and then the image changes to show a close view of a small circuit board, and then the camera zooms out to show Paulo and a female in conversation]

Everything you do today depends on digital world.

[Image changes to show a close view of Paulo looking at the small circuit board, and then the image changes to show Paulo talking to the camera]

The digital technology is the tool that enabled me to do great things.

[Image changes to show Paulo looking up, and then the image changes to show the planet Mars in Space]

It is an awesome feeling I would say to look at the sky and find Mars in the sky and say, “I have instruments that I have built right there”.

[Music plays and image changes to show the CSIRO logo and text: CSIRO digital careers, digitalcareers.csiro.au]

Paulo de Souza

Paulo is the Head of the School of Information and Communication Technology at Griffith University.