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PN05/07: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY ANNOUNCES 2005 MEDALS AND AWARDS

Last Updated on Thursday, 15 April 2010 20:02
Published on Monday, 14 March 2005 00:00
gold-m.gifThe Royal Astronomical Society has announced the names of 14 scientists it is honouring with medals and awards in 2005. 
The Society's highest honour is the Gold Medal. This year, the Gold Medal for Astronomy is jointly awarded to Professor Eleanor Margaret Burbidge FRS, Professor Emeritus in the University of California, San Diego and Professor Geoffrey Burbidge FRS, Professor of Physics in the University of California.
The award is given for their joint contributions to astronomical research and their impressive record of service to the community, including Professor Geoffrey Burbidge’s 30-year tenure as editor-in-chief of the Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, and Professor Margaret Burbidge’s Presidency of the American Astronomical Society.

The Gold Medal for Geophysics is awarded to Professor Carole Jordan FRS, Professor of Theoretical Physics at Oxford University. The award is given for her pioneering contributions to solar and stellar studies, her role in opening up the new field of ultraviolet astronomy in the late 1970s and 80s, and her wide-ranging contributions to the teaching and promotion of physics and astronomy in the UK. Professor Jordan was also the first woman President of the RAS 1994-96.

The Eddington Medal is normally awarded every other year, for investigations of outstanding merit in theoretical astrophysics. This year the medal is awarded to Professor Rudolph Kippenhahn, formerly Director of the Max-Planck-Institut-für-Astrophysik in Germany, for his research into the structure and evolution of stars.

The Price Medal is usually awarded every other year, for investigations of outstanding merit in solid-earth geophysics, oceanography, or planetary sciences. The winner this year is Professor Gillian R. Foulger of the Department of Earth Sciences, Science Laboratories, Durham, whose research has raised serious doubts about the nature of the hotspots beneath volcanic centres such as Iceland, Hawaii and Yellowstone.

The Fowler Awards are given to individuals who have made a particularly noteworthy contribution to the astronomical and geophysical sciences at an early stage of their research career. This year’s winners are Dr. Gordon Ogilvie of the Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge, for his theoretical research aimed at clarifying and explaining the properties of accretion discs, and Dr. Arwen Deuss of the Earth Sciences Department, Cambridge, in recognition of her contributions to seismology and studies of the Earth’s interior.The Royal Astronomical Society Award for Service to Astronomy is given to Guy Hurst, President of the British Astronomical Association (BAA) 2001-3, currently Vice-President of the BAA and editor of ‘The Astronomer’ magazine.

The Royal Astronomical Society Award for Service to Geophysics is given to Professor Alan Douglas, formerly Head of Forensic Seismology at AWE Blacknest, Brimpton, Reading, and Chairman of the British Geophysical Association 1996 - 1999. Professor Douglas dedicated his career to using seismological observations to detect, locate and identify underground nuclear explosions.


Associateships of the Royal Astronomical Society honour eminent people in astronomy and geophysics who are not normally resident in the UK. Awards this year are made to:

·         Prof. Sir Harry Kroto FRS (University of Sussex)
·         Professor Frank Shu (National Tsing Hua University)
·         Professor John Orcutt (Scripps Institution of Oceanography)
·         Dr. Wesley T. Huntress (Carnegie Institution of Washington)
·         Professor Michael Mendillo (Boston University)

More information about the Royal Astronomical Society's medals and awards is available here

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Peter Bond
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