The Arecibo Observatory Congratulates Dr. Martha P. Haynes, Recipient of 2019 Bruce Gold Medal

The Arecibo Observatory Congratulates Dr. Martha P. Haynes, Recipient of 2019 Bruce Gold Medal

Dr. Martha P. Haynes, Goldwin Smith Professor of Astronomy at Cornell University, has been awarded the 2019 Catherine Wolfe Bruce Gold Medal in recognition of her role as an international leader and pioneer of radio studies of galaxies. Dr. Haynes began her work in astronomy as an intern at the Arecibo Observatory in the summer of 1973. Her research and the radio telescope have since evolved together, and as Dr. Haynes affirmed, “Arecibo has played a huge role in my career, so Arecibo shares in the Bruce Medal I am going to receive!”. The Bruce Gold Medal has been awarded since 1989 for outstanding research in astronomy, and is the highest award given annually by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.

From the Arecibo Observatory, Dr. Haynes conducted surveys of the 21 cm hydrogen line in star-forming galaxies to measure their galactic redshifts. Dr. Haynes and Dr. Ricardo Giovanelli were awarded the Henry Draper Medal in 1989 from the National Academy of Sciences for the “first three-dimensional view of some of the remarkable large-scale filamentary structure of our visible universe” studies that were conducted primarily from AO. Dr. Haynes also spearheaded the effort to create the Arecibo Legacy Fast ALFA (ALFALFA) survey, and currently co-leads the undergraduate ALFALFA team that gives students and professors at smaller colleges across the globe, the opportunity to participate in radio observations using AO, the Very Large Array, and Green Bank Telescope. In October, Dr. Haynes shared a presentation with current AO staff that outlined the progression of her radio astronomy research spanning five decades as it intertwined with the observatory and upgrades to the telescope. The talk was peppered with photos of previous and current AO personnel who have worked at the observatory throughout the years.

When asked about the future of Arecibo, Dr. Haynes highlighted the potential of the ALPACA upgrade, which will increase the speed of the wide-area extragalactic surveys five-fold, expanding the telescope’s capability for detections of pulsars, fast radio bursts, low mass dark matter halos, and gravitation radiation. She described the observatory as a “light bucket” with the right combination and sensitivity of instruments to provide unique access to the transient, pulsar, and extragalactic sky. Dr. Haynes emphatically asserted that “there is stuff we still don’t even know about that AO can discover as we continue to develop the instrumentation”, ending with the declaration that “there is great science to be done with Arecibo, and I’m not done yet!”

“There is great science to be done with Arecibo, and I’m not done yet!” - Dr. Martha P. Haynes
The Arecibo Observatory is grateful for the contributions Dr. Martha P. Haynes has made to our understanding of the universe as well as to the Arecibo Observatory, and we congratulate her as she is awarded the 2019 Bruce Gold Medal.

Text provided by Tracy Becker - AO Collaborator/SWRI Postdoctoral Researcher

Arecibo Media Contact
Ricardo Correa
Universidad Ana G. Mendez (UAGM)
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Arecibo Observatory

Keywords: arecibo, observatory, haynes, ALPACA, Giovanelli, Bruce, Gold, Medal, Astronomical, Society