The Australian Centre for Astrobiology is based in the UNSW School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences.

Modern analogues for ancient environments and organisms, including Shark Bay in Western Australia, are active areas of research. The Neilan Laboratory is an international leader in research of cyanobacteria: oxygenic bacteria thought responsible for the oxygenation of Earth's surface environments around 2.5 billion years ago, an event that allowed for the later evolution of complex life and which is of great interest to astrobiologists.