Prize Winners 2014
The 2014 MERAC Prizes for the
Best Doctoral Thesis are awarded in
Dr. Claudia Del P. Lagos
The 2014 MERAC Prize for the Best Doctoral Thesis in Theoretical Astrophysics is awarded to Dr. Claudia Del P. Lagos for her thesis in the field of galaxy formation. Dr. Lagos’ thesis represents two major breakthroughs that overhaul the treatment of star formation and feedback in the simulations of galaxy formation. Her work has allowed the physical predictions of the galaxy formation models to be confronted directly with observations.
Dr. Amaury Triaud
The 2014 MERAC Prize for the Best Doctoral Thesis in Observational Astrophysics is awarded to Dr. Amaury Triaud for his thesis in the field of exoplanets. During his doctorate, Dr. Triaud conducted the radial velocity confirmation of transiting exoplanet candidates produced by the WASP survey, confirming 48 new systems. By measuring the angle between the stellar rotation spin and the planet’s orbital spin, he discovered that many hot Jupiters occupy non-coplanar orbits, a result that has a big impact on planet formation and orbital evolution models.
Dr. Boon Kok Tan
Best Doctoral Thesis in New Technology The 2014 MERAC Prize for the Best Doctoral Thesis in New Technology is awarded to Dr. Boon Kok Tan for his thesis in the field of sub-millimetre wave astronomy. Dr. Tanʼs research for the PhD has contributed significantly to the advancement of the state of the art of coherent detector technologies. This includes fully integrated SIS mixer chips with wide RF and IF bandwidth, which are suitable for future heterodyne arrays, and advanced designs such as balanced and single side-band mixers.