Leonardo da Vinci Award and Blaise Pascal Medallists 2022

We have the pleasure to announce the Leonardo da Vinci Award and Blaise Pascal Medallists 2022.

Leonardo da Vinci Award – Professor Anny Cazenave

In recognition for her Outstanding Lifelong Achievement. Dr. Cazenave is Director for Earth Sciences at the International Space Science Institute (ISSI), in Bern, Switzerland, since 2013. Previously, she was a star scientist of the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales, in Toulouse, France, where she now is emeritus scientist. She is a world authority on anthropogenic sea level changes. Dr. Cazenave is a leading specialist of space research applied to Earth physics. As already mentioned, she is a world authority on sea level change and its relation with climate, especially using satellite remote sensing (hydrology from space). She is an expert of marine geophysics, mainly using satellite altimetry. She was a pioneer of satellite geodesy and its applications, including gravity, tides, precise positioning, global mass redistributions among oceans, atmosphere and land. Dr. Cazenave’s present research addresses different aspects of sea level changes: improvement of satellite measurements of sea level and quantification of uncertainties, estimation of the causes of sea level variations from global to local scales, and study of sea level impacts in coastal zones. Over the past decade, within the context of the Climate Change Initiative Programme of the European Space Agency, she has led a project to improve the ~30 year-long altimetry-based sea level record through a complete reprocessing of altimetry data from nine different space missions, developing new algorithms, improved geophysical corrections, etc. This huge undertaking, which involved several European partners, produced a new sea level dataset that is now available to the international community. She also initiated new research to estimate sea level changes in coastal zones as classical nadir altimetry does not work within 10-20 km of the coast due to parasitic reflections from land. This is critical research because, until recently, it was not known whether sea level at the coast rises at the same rate as in the open ocean. Novel, unexpected results obtained by Dr. Cazenave and her group showed that, along a large portion of the world coastal zones, coastal sea level trends at distances < 2-3 km from the shoreline are similar to those in the nearby open ocean. In few instances only, higher or lower rates are observed at the coast compared to offshore. This is key information for decision-making and adaptation. Accordingly, it is most befitting for the European Academy of Sciences to grant the 2022 Leonardo da Vinci Award to Prof. Anny Cazenave.

Blaise Pascal Medallist in Chemistry – Professor Gary J. Schrobilgen

In recognition to his contributions to the advances of science in the field of Chemistry. By the originality and the great scope of his discoveries, associated with the extreme elegance of the syntheses and the accuracy of the physical-chemical characterizations, Gary Schrobilgen is recognized worldwide as the specialist of fluorinatedcompounds of noble gases and species with very high oxidation degrees. This recognition is attested by the numerous chapters on the subject which have been requested to him by the editors of encyclopedias and journals, such as Kirk-Othmer, Encyclopedia of NMR, Concise Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology, Encyclopedia Britannica, etc.

Blaise Pascal Medallist in Engineering – Professor Marco Amabili

In recognition of his contributions to the advances of science in the field of Engineering. Professor Amabili currently is the Canada Research Chair in Vibrations and Fluid-structure Interaction at McGill University, Montreal, Canada. His eminent and seminal contributions span over the areas of mechanics of plates and shells, structural dynamics and stability. He is the Author of almost 250 papers published in the best refereed international journals (SCOPUS H-Index=59) and of the worldwide well-known book “Nonlinear Vibrations and Stability of Shells and Plates” published by Cambridge University Press.

Blaise Pascal Medallist in Materials Science – Professor Claudia Felser

In recognition of her contributions for her work related to the design and realization of new quantum materials, with impact to quantum and energy conversion technologies. Prof. Felser’s work has led to fundamental breakthroughs in materials science and condensed matter research. Together with her team and cooperation partners, she has developed a self-contained program whereby new topological phenomena are theoretically predicted, quantum materials that would exhibit these phenomena are grown, experiments where these properties are expected to emerge are designed and implemented and thus novel effects are confirmed.

Blaise Pascal Medallist in Mathematics – Professor Alain-Sol Sznitman

In recognition for his contributions to Probability Theory. He is one of the main players who have transformed probability theory into one of the most active and important branches of mainstream mathematics — both directly via their own work, but also by creating a sense of community. In this last decade, Sznitman has again crafted a deep subject. With the “interlacement” questions, one looks at questions of the connectivity properties of “the complement of a random structure” rather that of the random structure itself. This turned out to be a deep topic, with relations to many other currently active areas of probability theory (maxima of random fields), where again, the ideas that he developed turn out to be central.

Blaise Pascal Medallist in Physics – Professor Susan Scott

In recognition for her contributions to the advances of Physics. Distinguished Professor Susan Scott is an internationally recognised mathematical physicist, who has made ground-breaking discoveries in General Relativity, Cosmology and Gravitational Wave Science spanning more than three decades. She played a leading role in Australia’s participation in the first detection of gravitational waves in 2015, and the development of the field of gravitational wave science in Australia following on from that discovery.