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Cecilia Payne-Gaposchkin Medal and Prize recipients

For distinguished contributions to plasma, solar or space physics.


Professor Louise Harra

For pioneering contributions to the development of extreme ultraviolet imaging and spectroscopy instrumentation for solar space missions and its application to further our understanding of dynamic activity on the Sun.

Find out more about Professor Louise Harra


Professor Gianluca Gregori
University of Oxford

For pioneering experiments that have established laboratory astrophysics as a tool to study turbulent magnetised plasmas, particularly dynamo amplification, particle acceleration and heat conduction.


Professor Mihalis Mathioudakis
Queen’s University Belfast

For pioneering contributions to the development of high-cadence, large-format cameras for next-generation astrophysical telescopes and their application to dynamic imaging of the Sun’s tenuous atmosphere.


Professor Simon Hooker
University of Oxford

For pioneering contributions to the development of high-power plasma waveguides and their application to laser-driven plasma accelerators.


Professor Alexander Schekochihin
University of Oxford
For elucidating the dynamics that regulate the properties of turbulent, magnetised laboratory and astrophysical plasmas.


Professor Steven J Schwartz
Imperial College London
For his many contributions to shock waves, particle acceleration, and fundamental plasma phenomena in the Sun’s atmosphere, interplanetary medium, near-Earth environment and wider astrophysical contexts.


Professor Valery Nakariakov
University of Warwick
For his leadership and major contribution to the discovery of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) activity of the solar corona, which led to transformative changes in our understanding of the solar atmosphere, and to the creation and successful implementation of a new branch of solar physics, MHD coronal seismology.


Professor Peter Norreys
University of Oxford and STFC Rutherford Appleton Laborator
For his pioneering contributions to the physics of fast particle generation and energy transport in relativistic laser- plasma interactions.


Professor Yvonne Elsworth
University of Birmingham
For the development of Helioseismology into a unique quantitative tool probing the deep interior of the Sun, illuminating stellar structure and evolution and the solar neutrino problem.


Professor Eric Priest
St Andrews University
For his numerous major contributions to many of the unsolved problems in solar physics, including magnetic reconnection, coronal heating, phasing-mixing of MHD waves and solar flares.


Dr John William Connor
UKAEA Fusion, Culham Science Centre
For his seminal theoretical contributions to magnetically-confined fusion energy research.