De Zeeuw–Van Dishoeck Graduation Prize Awarded to Sebastiaan Haffert

1 december 2015

The De Zeeuw–Van Dishoeck Graduation Prize for Astronomy, established to encourage young talent in astronomy in the Netherlands, has been awarded to Sebastiaan Haffert of the University of Leiden. The award was presented at a ceremony in Haarlem on 30 November 2015.

The award, which consists of a certificate and a cash prize of 3000 euros, is awarded annually to the best master’s thesis in the field of astronomy written by a student studying at a Dutch university. Sebastiaan received the prize for the development of an innovative sensor that can provide better views of stars and planets outside the Solar System.

"In astronomy a lot of prizes are won for finding planets or certain types of galaxies. I won this prize for developing an instrument. That does not happen often!" remarks Sebastiaan.

Instrument development drives new discoveries — it is just as important for our field as the actual science,” adds Tim de Zeeuw.

The prize fund was established by ESO Director General, Tim De Zeeuw and Ewine van Dishoeck, Professor of Theoretical Astronomy and Professor of Molecular Astrophysics respectively at the University of Leiden. The prize was first awarded to Job Feldbrugge, in November 2014.

The prize is administered by the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW), the oldest learned society in the Netherlands. Founded in 1752, KHMW aims to advance science and build a bridge between science and society.



Richard Hook
ESO, Public Information Officer
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6655
Cell: +49 151 1537 3591

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Sebastiaan Haffert wins De Zeeuw–Van Dishoeck Graduation Prize for Astronomy
Sebastiaan Haffert wins De Zeeuw–Van Dishoeck Graduation Prize for Astronomy