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Prizes

The Laboratory Astrophysics Division (LAD) of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) awards three prizes, each of which recognizes outstanding theoretical or experimental research in laboratory astrophysics:

The Laboratory Astrophysics Prize is presented, normally on an annual basis, to an individual who has made significant theoretical or experimental contributions to laboratory astrophysics over an extended period of time. The prize includes a cash award, a framed certificate, and an invited lecture by the recipient at a meeting of the Laboratory Astrophysics Division.

The Early Career Award is presented, normally on an annual basis, to an individual who has made a significant theoretical or experimental contribution to laboratory astrophysics early in their professional career. Nominees must have no more than 10 years of professional experience since their PhD or equivalent degree, as of the end of the year of the award. The award includes a check, a framed certificate, and an invited lecture by the recipient at a meeting of the Division.

The Dissertation Prize is presented, normally on an annual basis, to recognize an outstanding theoretical or experimental doctoral dissertation (or the equivalent) in laboratory astrophysics. The prize is awarded to an individual who has completed their PhD or equivalent degree in any of the three calendar years immediately preceding the award year. The prize includes a cash award, a framed certificate, and an invited lecture by the recipient at a meeting of the Division.

2020 LAD Prize Recipients

The LAD Laboratory Astrophysics Prize goes to Dr. James Truran for theoretical work on early star formation and the nucleosynthesis history of the universe, as well as for his seminal contributions to the study of astrophysical thermonuclear explosions, nucleosynthesis, and the use of nuclear-decay chronometers to determine ages of stellar and terrestrial matter.

The LAD Early Career Award goes to Prof. Sarah M. Hörst for laboratory research advancing our understanding of photochemical haze formation in planetary atmospheres within our solar system and beyond.

The LAD Dissertation Prize goes to Dr. Natalie Hell for groundbreaking laboratory measurements necessary for accurate, reliable interpretation of high-resolution X-ray spectra from astronomical sources.