Wadham astrophysicist scoops prize

7th April 2014

News, Student news, Alumni news

A thesis by Wadham doctoral student Boon Kok Tan has won the prestigious MERAC prize for Best Doctoral Thesis in New Technology, 2014.

Dr Boon Kok Tan (2007, DPhil Astrophysics) of the Department of Physics (Astrophysics) at the University of Oxford was awarded the prize for his thesis in the field of sub-millimeter wave astronomy.

Boon commented: "I'm thrilled to learn that my thesis has won such a prestigious award. It is great to know that the work carried out here at Oxford Physics is acknowledged and appreciated by wider European Astronomy communities. The support from the Astrophysics Sub-department, Wadham College, and friends and family has always been instrumental and contributed a lot towards the completion of the thesis, and I definitely would love to share this joyous moment with all of them."

On awarding the prize, MERAC said: “The research done for the PhD has contributed significantly to the advancement of the state of the art of coherent detector technologies. This includes fully integrated SIS (Superconductor-Insulator-Superconductor) mixer chips with wide RF (Radio Frequency) and IF (Intermediate Frequency) bandwidth, which are suitable for future heterodyne arrays, and advanced designs such as balanced and single side-band mixers.”

MERAC (Mobilising European Research in Astrophysics and Cosmology) is an independent charitable and tax exempt foundation based in Zurich, Switzerland. It promotes innovative and non-commercial research in astrophysics and cosmology in Europe and Switzerland by awarding a MERAC Prize and by supporting post-doctoral research by early career researchers in Europe.