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The HEAD Mid-Career Prize

The HEAD Mid-Career Prize is awarded approximately every 18 months for a significant advance or accomplishment (observational or theoretical) in High Energy Astrophysics by an individual astrophysicist within fifteen years of receiving their PhD. The prize is selected and administered by the AAS HEAD Executive Committee. The cited body of work should be published in a refereed journal within the past five years, and originally published within fifteen years of the nominee receiving their PhD. Allowance will be made for time off because of maternity/paternity leave or other valid gaps. The prize will amount to $1500 with corrections every 5 years for inflation. The HEAD covers up to $1500 of the awardee’s travel expenses  (transportation and lodging) to attend the meeting.  The winner will give an invited talk at the Divisional Meeting in the award year. 

The 2024 Mid-Career Prize Winner: Samaya Nissanke

The 2024 HEAD Mid-Career Prize is awarded to Dr. Samaya Nissanke for the development of novel techniques to extract fundamental physics from astronomical data, paving the way for the era of gravitational-wave multi-messenger astronomy.  Please see the press release for more information.

The List of Awardees

The Nomination Process

The due date for nomination materials to be submitted to the HEAD Secretary will be approximately six months before the HEAD division meeting. Materials should be submitted via email to the HEAD Secretary at A nomination should include:

  • a cover letter
  • The nomination statement listing the specific paper(s) for consideration, with publication dates and other bibliographic information.  The statement should specifically address the relevance of this work to high energy astrophysics. For paper(s) with multiple authors, the nomination statement should describe the nominee's specific contributions to the work.
  • the date of the nominee's PhD

Self nominations are allowed.

Please note that nominations are not held over; nominations need to be re-submitted  for consideration in the next award cycle,


The current deadline for nominations is October 15, 2024.