Press Release

AAS Solar Physics Division Announces Prize Recipients

By SpaceRef Editor
June 2, 2014
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At the 224th semiannual meeting of the American Astronomical Society this week in Boston, Massachusetts [], the major organization of professional astronomers in North America named the recipients of its 2014 Solar Physics Division prizes for outstanding achievements in solar physics research and writing.

The George Ellery Hale Prize for outstanding contributions to solar astronomy is awarded to Thomas Duvall Jr. (Stanford University) for his invention and application of innovative helioseismic methods. His work has led to groundbreaking discoveries within the solar interior, including internal sound-speed and rotation profiles, meridional circulation, wave perturbations in sunspots, and large-scale convection properties.

The Karen Harvey Prize, which recognizes significant work on the study of the Sun early in a person’s professional career, goes to Alexis Rouillard (National Center for Scientific Research, France) for his contributions to heliospheric imaging analysis and improving our understanding of the sources and evolution of corotating interaction regions, small-scale transients, coronal mass ejections, and solar energetic particle events.

The Solar Physics Division Popular Writing Award for outstanding journalism covering the Sun is awarded to Thomas Curwen of the Los Angeles Times, for his article “Capturing the mysteries of the Sun one drawing at a time.” Curwen walks the reader through a day in the life of one of the resident observers at the Mt. Wilson Solar Observatory, Steve Padilla. By doing so he exposes a broad audience to the near 100-year tradition of recording the Sun’s daily appearance at Mt. Wilson. This unique and interesting narrative was engaging, well photographed, and accessible.

Craig DeForest
AAS SPD Press Officer
+1 303-641-5769

Photos of the new AAS prizewinners are available from Crystal Tinch ( at the AAS Executive Office.

More information about AAS Solar Physics Division prizes, along with lists of past recipients:

The American Astronomical Society (AAS), established in 1899 and based in Washington, DC, is the major organization of professional astronomers in North America. Its Solar Physics Division (SPD, was established in 1969 and is the premier organization of solar physicists in the world. The mission of the AAS ( is to enhance and share humanity’s scientific understanding of the universe. The SPD advances the study of the Sun, coordinates heliophysics research with other branches of science, holds annual scientific meetings, awards prizes, and supports students in various ways.

SpaceRef staff editor.