Hel.A.S. Newsletter 243 - May 2018

  1. Short News
  2. Vassiliki Kalogera Elected to the US National Academy of Sciences
  3. 36th General Assembly and Hel.A.S. Elections
  4. Hellenic Space Agency
  5. National Committee for Astronomy
  6. The Hellenic Radiotelescope
  7. Student and Postdoctoral Research Opportunities Abroad
  8. Upcoming Astronomy Meetings in Greece
  9. About this Newsletter
1. Short News

The Society would like to congratulate Ordinary Members Vasiliki Pavlidou (a current member of the Hel.A.S. Council) and Konstantinos Tassis for their recent promotion at the level of Associate Professor in Theoretical Astrophysics at the University of Crete. The Society extends its best wishes to both Profs. Pavlidou and Tassis for a fruitful and prolific continuation of their careers and scientific endeavors.

The Society would like to congratulate Ordinary Member Nectaria Gizani for undertaking a 12-month Visiting Scholar position at the Department of Astronomy at UC Berkeley, California, USA. The Society extends its best wishes to Prof. Gizani for further successes, both in this position and in her future scientific endeavors. More information about Prof. Gizani's new affiliation can be found here.

The Society would like to remind and alert its Junior Members of the upcoming, June 20 deadline for travel grant support for the second half of the year. More information and the grant application form can be found at the News & Events Section of the Society's web site.

2. Vassiliki Kalogera Elected to the US National Academy of Sciences
The Society proudly informs its Members that a distinguished Ordinary Member, Vassiliki (Vicky) Kalogera, has been just elected to the US National Academy of Sciences. Prof. Kalogera is an E.O. Haven Professor of Physics and Astronomy, as well as the Director of the Center for the Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics at Northwestern University, USA.

The announcement of Prof. Kalogera's election can be found here and has been issued by the American Astronomical Society, of which Prof. Kalogera is also a member.

Prof. Kalogera has been a central figure in the research for gravitational waves, the coalescence of neutron-star binaries and the X-ray emission from compact binary objects. She is also a leading member of the LIGO Consortium that achieved the first observation of gravitational waves in 2015.

The Society extends its most sincere congratulations for this distinction to Prof. Kalogera, a world-renowned colleague and Society Member, and expresses its best wishes to her for further successes and distinctions.
3. 36th General Assembly and Hel.A.S. Elections 
The Governing Council of Hel.A.S. reminds its members that the next, 36th General Assembly of the Society will take place on Friday, June 22, 2018 at the Society's legal base, namely the Section of Astrophysics, Astronomy and Mechanics of the Physics Department of the University of Athens.
The Society's elections for the Governing Council of the 2018 - 2020 service term will be taking place in the course of the forthcoming General Assembly. As per Articles 27 - 39 of the Society's Constitution, election-pertinent material, instructions and guidelines were sent by ordinary mail to all Ordinary and Junior Members around April 10. Envelopes include an invitation and tentative agenda for the General Assembly, along with the election material.

Members are urged to carefully review this material, as listed in the cover letter included in the envelope, to make sure that the envelope includes everything they need for a smooth participation in the elections. Should a Member find that there are missing items,  the Member is strongly encouraged to contact the Secretary of the Society.

The Governing Council wishes to reiterate that, for Ordinary and Junior Members to participate in the election, either in person or via an absentee ballot, they should be in good financial standing. This means that membership fees up to 2017 should be covered by the election date.  Both the Society's future and standing rely on a robust election turnout; for this reason, Members are strongly encouraged to fulfill this financial requirement that will validate their voting rights.
4. Hellenic Space Agency 
In the previous Newsletter of April 2018, the Society informed its Members of the formal establishment of the Hellenic Space Agency (HSA), on March 14, 2018. It was also pleased to announce that the first President of the HSA was Dr. Stamatios Krimigis, a distinguished Hel.A.S. Member.

The Society now regrets to announce that Dr. Krimigis recently resigned from the position of the HSA President for reasons explained in an openly available, public letter, available here. The resignation of Dr. Krimigis was followed by a number of resignations of members of that first HSA Governing Board.

In view of these unfortunate developments, a new HSA Governing Board was announced by the Ministry of Digital Policy, Telecommunications and Media (preliminary announcement available here). The new HSA President is Dr. Christodoulos Protopappas. He is complemented by CEO Georgios Mantzouris, a Commander of the Hellenic Navy, and Board Members Konstantinos Stavrinidis and Antonios Paschalis. 

The Society is committed to promptly informing Members about developments in the HSA. The Agency's website is not yet available; it will be communicated to members as soon as it appears online.
5. National Committee for Astronomy
The Society informs its Members that a new constitution of the Greek National Committee for Astronomy (GNCA) has been announced by the Ministry of Education and the General Secretariat of Research and Technology. The GNCA plays an important advisory role to the government in regards to Astronomy and Astrophysics. In addition, it represents the country to the International Astronomical Union (IAU).

The Society is also very pleased to announce that all Committee members, regular and substitute, are Ordinary Members of the Society.

The regular Committee members are Spyros Basilakos, Iossif Papadakis, Apostolos Mastichiadis (current Hel.A.S. President), Manolis Plionis and Ioannis Georgantopoulos. The substitute Committee members are Nikolaos Stergioulas (current Hel.A.S. Council Member), Vassilis Charmandaris, Despina Hatzidimitriou, Georgia Tsiropoula and Panayotis Boumis. The new GNCA President is Spyros Basilakos. The current Committee members can be also found here, while an up-to-date GNCA website is under development. 

The Society congratulates and extends its best wishes to the new GNCA members for a successful service and advancement of Astronomy and Astrophysics in Greece, alongside with the Society. The Society will continue to keep its Members informed about latest developments, announcements and publishable deliberations of the Committee.
6. The Hellenic Radiotelescope
A 30-meter radio telescope will be constructed and operated in Greece for the first time. The telescope will be installed close to the southernmost tip of Europe, at the Thermopylae Center of Satellite Communications, in the region of Skarfeia, Lokrida.

The ambitious project is the outcome of a prolific collaboration between a science team and the Hellenic Telecommunications Organization (OTE), that has provided the necessary infrastructure for the antenna to qualify for the reception of radio signals from outer space.

The science team involves Assist. Prof. Nectaria Gizani of the Hellenic Open University (now a Visiting Scholar at UC Berkeley), who is an Ordinary Member of the Society, and Assist. Prof. George Veldes of the Technological Educational Institute of Sterea Ellada.

The Center of Satellite Communications at Thermopylae, including the Hellenic Radiotelescope, will become a national hub for research and educational activities. The telescope will enable deep-space, state-of-the-art radioastronomy and will further participate in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Program, in collaboration with the Breakthrough Listen Research Laboratory at UC Berkeley. Detailed information on the facility and its objectives can be found here.
7. Student and Postdoctoral Research Opportunities Abroad
The list below may be refreshed or updated with further established lists:
  • AAS Pre-Doctoral / Graduate positions here.
  • AAS PostDoctoral Positions and Fellowships here.
  • EAS Job Directory (choose "PhD positions" or "Academic jobs" accordingly) here.
  • EAS School Directory here.
  • IAU Careers in Astronomy here.
  • Careers and research fellowship opportunities at ESA here.
  • Careers at NASA here.
  • ESO Recruitment Portal here.
  • CERN opportunities for students here.
  • CERN opportunities for graduates here.
  • Graduate programs at Chilean Universities here.
  • NEW Summer Colloquium, Solar Spectropolarimetry and Diagnostic Techniques here.
  • NEW Summer School, Advanced Topics in MHD here.
Any Member of the Society who wishes to contribute another credible link with opportunities, or individual opportunities that will, however, be shown in a single-liner format as above, is encouraged to contact the Secretary of the Society.
8. Upcoming Astronomy Meetings in Greece
9. About this Newsletter

This Newsletter was sent to all members of Hel.A.S. who have e-mail access. The next edition of the Newsletter will be mailed around June 1, 2018.  Please send your announcements (e.g., appointments / departures, job openings, research opportunities, awards, conferences in Greece) or comments before May 25, 2018. If you do not wish to receive future issues of this Newsletter or the e-mail address to which it was sent is not your preferred one, please inform the Secretary of Hel.A.S. at secretary@helas.gr.


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