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MERAC Prizes

The MERAC Prizes awarded by the European Astronomical Society
recognize and support young European astronomers.

2016

The 2016 MERAC Prizes for the Best Doctoral Thesis are awarded in

Theoretical Astrophysics to

Dr Maria Petropoulou

for her thesis on radiative instabilities and particle acceleration in high-energy plasmas with applications to relativistic jets of active galactic nuclei and gamma-ray bursts.


Observational Astrophysics to

Dr Yingjie Peng

for his thesis on the simplicity of the evolving galaxy population and the origin of the Schechter form of the galaxy stellar mass function.


New Technologies to

Dr Oliver Pfuhl

for his thesis on an innovative design of two subsystems for the VLTI instrument GRAVITY: the fibre coupler and the guiding system.



Group picture of the three MERAC Prize laureates taken at EWASS 2016 in Athens, Greece.

2015

The 2015 MERAC Prizes for the Best Early Career Researcher are awarded in

Theoretical Astrophysics to

Dr. Michela Mapelli

for her theoretical and computational contributions to the dynamics of star clusters and galaxies, the reionization epoch, the Galactic centre, and the formation of massive stellar black holes.


Observational Astrophysics to

Dr. Saskia Hekker

for her ground-breaking contributions to the understanding of the internal structure of red-giant stars based on stellar oscillations measured by the CoRoT and Kepler satellites.


New Technologies to

Dr. Sylvestre Lacour

for his development of pupil masking and pupil remapping observing techniques, which provide a unique combination of high contrast and high angular resolution to study the immediate environment of stars.



Group picture of the three MERAC Prize laureates taken at EWASS 2015 in Tenerife, Spain.

2014

The 2014 MERAC Prizes for the Best Doctoral Thesis are awarded in

Theoretical Astrophysics to

Dr. Claudia Del P. Lagos

for her thesis on the treatment of star formation and feedback in simulations of galaxy formation.


Observational Astrophysics to

Dr. Amaury Triaud

for his thesis on the discovery and characterisation of many new exoplanetary systems.


New Technologies to

Dr. Boon Kok Tan

for his thesis on detector technologies for sub-millimetre wave astronomy.



Group picture taken at EWASS 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland. The MERAC prize laureates are surrounded by Francesco Palla, chair of the prize committee (left), Thierry Courvoisier (EAS President) and George Lake representing the FONDATION MERAC (right).

2013

The 2013 MERAC Prizes for the Best Early Career Researcher are awarded in

Theoretical Astrophysics to

Dr. Gabriella De Lucia

for her work on the theoretical modeling of galaxy formation and evolution.


Observational Astrophysics to

Dr. Elisabetta Caffau

for the discovery of a very primitive low-mass star in our Galaxy.


New Technologies to

Prof. Justin Read

for his high-impact research in computational astrophysics and cosmology.



Group picture taken at EWASS 2013 in Turku, Finland. The MERAC prize laureates are surrounded by Francesco Palla, chair of the prize committee (left), and George Lake representing the FONDATION MERAC (right).

Information

FONDATION MERAC (Mobilising European Research in Astrophysics and Cosmology) is a non-profit foundation started in 2012 with headquarters in Switzerland to recognize and support young European astronomers. There are yearly three MERAC Prizes awarded by the EAS.

The prizes of 20'000 € are for each of the three categories:

  • Theoretical Astrophysics,
  • Observational Astrophysics,
  • New Technologies (Instrumental/Computational).

The prizes alternate by year for:

  • Best Early Career Researcher Prizes (on odd years),
  • Best Doctoral Thesis Prizes (on even years).

The awardees are also eligible for further support from the FONDATION MERAC.

The call for nominations for MERAC prizes opens in July until the end of September of the year preceding the award.

The call for nominations for the MERAC Prizes of 2017 (Best Early Career Researcher) is open until the end of September.

For more information, please read the official MERAC Prize rules or contact the Webmaster.