Statement and Rules of the Fizeau Interferometry Prize

Fizeau Prize Website at the Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur

Name of Prize

The Fizeau Prize for Contributions to Astronomical Optical Interferometry ("The Fizeau Prize").

Purpose of Prize

To provide recognition within the interferometry community, as well as in the broader science community, of theoretical and technical progress and developments in the rapidly growing field of optical interferometry, and to assist the Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur (OCA) and the IAU Commission with engaging the community in promoting the future of optical interferometry.

Prize Authority

The Fizeau Prizes will be a joint program of the IAU Commission 54 and of the OCA.

Prize Sponsor

The Fizeau Prize will be sponsored by the Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur. The OCA includes research departments that have a long and continuing history of innovative contributions to the development of optical interferometry. The IAU does not contribute financial support for the prize.

Description of the Fizeau Prize

The Prize will recognize outstanding achievement in fundamentals and implementation of optical interferometry. The Prize may be given for significant theoretical and technical innovations, for instrument design and deployment, including programmatic and management accomplishments, for teaching, and for related public service. The Prize may have either of two formats. The Fizeau Lifetime Contributions Prize will recognize a substantial history of contributions and international leadership as evidenced by one or more of: publications, advancement of knowledge, reputation, procurement and management of resources, and accomplishments of former students. The Fizeau Investigator Prize will recognize recent, specific contributions, judged of exceptional merit or impact by such evidence as intensive follow-up activity, high citation rate, focus in conferences, or strong media interest. Candidates may be of any age and nationality, and need not be members of the IAU.

The Nature of the Prize

The Fizeau Lifetime Contributions Prize will consist of a certificate of prize, with a statement of the contributions and their significance, accompanied by a cash prize of 1000 Euros. The Fizeau Investigator Prize will consist of a certificate of prize, with a statement of the contributions and their significance, accompanied by a cash award of 1000 Euros.

The Occasion of the Prize

The prizes will be timed, when possible, to allow announcement at a major community venue. Possibilities are IAU events and International Conferences focusing on interferometry techniques or science.

Nomination and Selection Process

Approximately six months before the expected date of the prize, the OCA Director and the Commission President will extend an invitation to the international astronomy community via available newsletter and email routes. A complete nomination must include the nominating letter, which provides supporting evidence as well as indicates whether the nomination is for the Investigator or Lifetime Achievement prize, and a statement that the nominee is aware of and approves of the nomination. A single Prize Committee of seven members will be formed for both Fizeau and Michelson Prizes. The Commission President will appoint two members selected from the Commission Science Organizing Committee and/or from among the Commission present or past officers. The directors of the Observatoire de la Côted'Azur and of the Mount Wilson Science Institute (or their representatives) will be ex-officio members, and they will select three additional committee members from the community. The Prize Committee will review the nominations, and may solicit additional input from external referees as needed. It will meet, most likely by teleconference, to recommend the prize recipients and will draft the citation associated with the prize. Prize Committee meetings will be chaired by the Commission Vice President, who will act in a non-voting capacity. A committee member may initiate a nomination, but will then withdraw from the final discussion and vote. Recommendations will be subject to further review by and concurrence of the Commission 54 Science Organizing Committee.

Frequency of Prize

The IAU and OCA will invite nominations for a Fizeau Prize every two years. The Fizeau Prize Committee will recommend no more than one Fizeau Investigator Prize in each prize cycle. The Committee may from time to time recommend a Fizeau Lifetime Contributions Prize which may be in addition to or instead of an Investigator prize.

Excluded Candidates

Current officers of Commission 54 or its Science Organizing Committee, members of the Prize Committee, and the OCA Council may not be considered for the prize during their tenure in these positions.
Updated: 2 April 2012