Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan


Professor Margaret Kivelson Receives 2017 Kuiper Prize

Posted: June 5, 2017

Professor Margaret Kivelson Receives 2017 Kuiper Prize

We are very pleased to announce that Climate & Space professor Margaret Kivelson is the 2017 recipient of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) Division of Planetary Sciences highest award, the Kuiper Prize for Outstanding Contributions to Planetary Science.

The Kuiper Prize was established by the AAS Division of Planetary Sciences (DPS) to recognize and honor outstanding contributors to planetary science whose achievements have most advanced our understanding of the planetary system. Winners of the Kuiper Prize are invited to present a lecture to the DPS, as well as to publish a written version in Icarus, the official journal of the AAS.

From the AAS news release:

“The Gerard P. Kuiper Prize for outstanding contributions to planetary science goes to Margaret G. Kivelson (University of California, Los Angeles, and University of Michigan) for her work studying Jupiter’s magnetospheric plasmas to understand the interiors of planets and their moons. Kivelson’s pioneering discoveries of an ocean inside Jupiter’s moon Europa and a magnetic field generated by neighboring Ganymede showed us that these icy bodies are not inert but dynamic worlds. Her insights have spurred us to recognize that habitability need not depend on proximity to the Sun in the traditional habitable zone. As a direct result of Kivelson’s advancements, we now recognize that the ocean worlds of the outer solar system may represent our best chances for discovering life beyond Earth.”


In addition to her position as Research Professor in the Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering department at the University of Michigan, Professor Kivelson is a Distinguished Professor, Emerita in the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics (Acting Director in 1999-2000) and the Department of Earth and Space Sciences (Chair from 1984-1987) at UCLA.  She spends much time in the air commuting between LAX and DTW.


Congratulations, Professor Kivelson!