No 43 – 25/10/2019

SGAA/SSAA News No 43 – 25/10/2019

1. Two Members of the Society have received the Nobel prize in Physics 2019
2. Last call for the Schläfli Prize, awarded in 2020 in astronomy (DEADLINE October 31rst! see e-news 42)
3. Last SSAA GA in Basel: a new Secretary for the Society (all documents accessible through the website)
4. IAU Membership
5. Saas-Fee lectures 2020
6. Saas-Fee lectures 2021
7. Edith Alice Müller award 2019
8. Next GA of the SSAA in 2020
9. NEW, job opportunities
10.General information on the Society

1. Two Members of the Society have received the Nobel prize in Physics 2019

Congratulations to Michel Mayor (University of Geneva, former president of the SSAA)
and Didier Quéloz (University of Geneva and University of Cambridge) who received
with James Peebles (Princeton University) the Nobel prize in Physics 2019.

This is a big news for these outstanding researchers but also
a wonderful event for the Swiss astrophysical research.


2. Last call for the Schläfli Prize, award in 2020 in astronomy, deadline October 31rst 2019!

The Schläfli Prize, one of the longest-running science prizes
in Switzerland (since 1866), is awarded by the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT)
to young scientists for excellent articles resulting from PhDs in each of the following
natural science disciplines: Biology, Chemistry, Geosciences, and, in 2020, to Astronomy.

Eligibility is limited to young researchers who did their doctoral thesis
at a Swiss University, or Swiss nationals who did their doctoral thesis abroad.

Candidates must have defended their doctoral thesis between 1 November 2016 and 31 October 2019.
Nominations may be submitted by the candidate’s doctoral supervisor
or by the president of an SCNAT member society.

The two best candidates from the disciplines of biology, chemistry,
and astronomy will be proposed to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting Committee
for participation at the meeting in 2020.

Nominations for the Schläfli Prize must be submitted via their online form before 31 October 2019.

More information and details on the application process:


3. SSAA GA in Basel: a new Secretary for the Society (all documents accessible through the website)

We had a very lively General Assembly in Basel.

Adam Amara, the Secretary of the Society, stepped down after he moved
to a new position in UK. The Committee thanks him for his work in particular
in setting the new website of the Society.

In 2019, Sylvia Ekström kindly accepted to work as Secretary in interim.
The Committee thanks her very warmly for the work done in particular
in finalizing the website of the Society.

Marc Audard was elected unanimously to the position of Secretary of the Society and
can be contacted through the e-mail

The documents reporting on the business meeting are now available through
the web page of the Society:


4. IAU Membership

Dear colleague,

I would like to draw your attention to the recent opening
of the call for IAU membership applications for 2020.

We would like to encourage applications of Individual and Junior membership
to the Union, and therefore I ask for your help in spreading the word to
colleagues and students who may be interested.

Interested candidates should contact the National Member in the country
of work to apply, the link to this contact list is:

In cases where the country of work is not a National Member,
the individual should contact the President of one of
the IAU Divisions,

For more details, including deadlines and application criteria,
please revisit the following announcements:
Individual Member applications announcement:
Junior Member applications announcement:
I thank you for your help in spreading the word of the possibility
of becoming an IAU member in your community.

With best regards, Teresa Lago

Prof. Teresa Lago
IAU General Secretary
98bis, bd Arago, F-75014 Paris
Tel. +33 (0)1 43 25 83 58

5. Saas-Fee lectures 2020

Dear Colleagues,

The 2020 Saas-Fee of the Swiss Society for Astrophysics and Astronomy course
will take place in Saas-Fee (Swiss alps) from 15 to 20 March 2020.

The subject of the course is ‘Astronomy in the era of big data’, with three lecturers:

– Prof. Suzanne Aigrain (University of Oxford): Gaussian Processes for time series analysis
– Prof. Roberto Trotta (Imperial College London): Bayesian Statistics
– Prof. Marc Huertas-Company (Paris Observatory): Machine learning in Astronomy

Registration is now open using:

Note that attendance is limited to 70 participants, and admission will be granted on a first-come-first-served basis.

Yann Alibert


6. Saas-Fee lectures 2021

At our last General Assembly, we have selected among three very interesting projects,
the following topic for the Saas Fee lectures 2021

Compact-Object Astrophysics in the era of Multi-Messenger Astronomy


Tassos Fragos (UNIGE), Carlo Ferrigno (UNIGE), Maurizio Falanga (ISSI)


7. Edith Alice Müller award 2019

We are glad to announce that the Edith Alice Müller award 2019
has been attributed to Oliver Müller (University of Basel) for his thesis

Small-scale cosmology with dwarf galaxies


8. Next General Assembly of the SSAA in 2020

The next General Assembly will be held on Thursday 8 and Friday 9 October 2020
in Saint-Luc, Val d’Anniviers where a public astronomical observatory, the
François-Xaxier Bagnoud Observatory will celebrate its 25 years of existence


9. NEW: job opportunities

You can find below some links describing job opportunities:

Postdoc Position available at PMOD/WRC for a Solar Orbiter Instrument Scientist:

PhD positions at the University of Geneva:

If you would like to make some job announcement in the next e-news (planned in February 2020),
please send an e-mail to
with the appropriate information (see above)

10. General information on the Society

For more information concerning the SGAA/SSAA, astronomy in Switzerland, and related topics visit our Website

For any information and messages to be circulated via the SGAA/SSAA mailing list please e-mail your text to the secretary: in plain ASCII. Thank you !

Registration online to the Society

Each member of the SSAA is invited to register on the new website and to provide his/her contact details.

If you have changed your affiliation/e-mail please change the information accordingly. This will ensure that the SSAA has your correct contact information.

You can directly access the registration page here

Otherwise go to the web page

European Astronomical Society (EAS) MEMBERSHIP

The EAS offers free membership to any member of the SSAA working as a researcher in astrophysics in Switzerland. You can opt in during the registration process to SSAA, or later in your profile interface. By ticking the box–> YES, I want  to be an EAS member via the SSAA–, you agree that the SSAA transmits your detailed information to the EAS Office, and you agree that the EAS will make use of these data for EAS-related matters only. The EAS will also publish your first and last names, institution, and country on its EAS website, behind a login. The EAS Office will send login details at the beginning of each year.

SSAA members that are currently ordinary members of the EAS need also to tick this box in the SSAA profile interface if they wish to have the free membership via the SSAA. Otherwise, they will be considered as EAS paying members in 2019 (40 EUR).

The benefits of EAS membership can be found at:

In particular, EAS members profit from discount registration fees for the EAS annual meeting (formerly EWASS). The membership is, however, not immediate, so in case you plan to attend an EAS annual meeting please be sure to accept the EAS membership well in advance.

Annual membership payment through the webpage

The 30 CHF annual SSAA membership payment can be made online:

You can also set an automatic annual payment by clicking on the “Subscribe” button (but in that case you need to have a PayPal account).