Astrophysicist Kaspi wins Killam Fellowship

Posted on Wednesday, March 17, 2010
McGill Prof. Vicky has been awarded a 2009 Prix du Québec. / Photo: Christinne Muschi

McGill Prof. Vicky Kaspi has been awarded a 2010 Killam Fellowship. / Photo: Christinne Muschi

By William Raillant-Clark

Vicky Kaspi, McGill’s Lorne Trottier Chair in Astrophysics and Cosmology, has earned a Killam Research Fellowship from the Canada Council for the Arts for her research on magnetars. She joins this year’s elite group of eight outstanding Canadian researchers who have each been awarded $70,000 a year for two years, for a total of $1.12 million.

“I am extremely honoured that my project was selected by the Council. Moreover, the award will provide a wonderful boost to this field of research that is pushing the boundaries of our knowledge,” she said.

Kaspi’s project, A New Window on the High Energy Universe, will focus on magnetars, slowly rotating neutron stars that derive their energy from incredibly powerful magnetic fields, the strongest known in the universe. The project title reflects the fact that the research will be part of the observing schedule of NuSTAR, a new X-ray telescope that NASA will launch in 2011.

The Fellowship recipients are chosen by the Killam Selection Committee, which is comprised of 15 eminent scientists and scholars representing a broad range of disciplines. The Fellowships support scholars engaged in research projects of outstanding merit in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences, engineering and interdisciplinary studies within these fields.

Kaspi and her team of researchers outline their work in more depth in a fascinating video available online at: http://publications.mcgill.ca/headway/multimedia/.

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Category: Research and Discovery

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