On Friday 8 January 2021, the Royal Astronomical Society’s awarded the George Darwin Lectureship 2021 to Professor Filippo Fraternali of the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute for his work in developing our understanding of how galaxies evolve by accreting material from the intergalactic medium.
According to the RAS, Professor Fraternali was awarded the Lectureship for several reasons. "He has made major contributions to our understanding of the origin and evolution of galaxies. His work covers both observational data and theoretical modelling, looking at the structure and evolution of galaxies using the powerful techniques made possible by spectral line data cubes. His work led to the development of fountain theory, describing how gas from the intergalactic medium surrounding a galaxy is accreted onto clouds of cool gas which are pushed up from a star-forming disc by supernovae.
This gas later falls back onto the galaxy, bringing with it the accreted gas from the intergalactic medium. This model explains a wide range of observational data across the electromagnetic spectrum relating both to our Galaxy and to other galaxies across a wide range of luminosities.
Prof. Fraternali is known as an extremely clear and engaging speaker and is frequently invited to give talks at major international meetings and conferences. He is therefore well-placed to present exciting developments in extragalactic astronomy to a broad audience."
The George Darwin Lectureship is named after the astronomer George Darwin and has been given annually since 1984. Previous winners include Professor Eline Tolstoy of the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, who was awarded this prize in 2013.
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