Einstein Online inventor Markus Pössel honoured

This year's Hanno and Ruth Roelin Award for Scientific Journalism, endowed with 3,000 Euros, goes to AEI scientist Dr. Markus Pössel.

September 24, 2007

Markus Pössel is being honoured for his extensive work in the area of scientific journalism, especially for the Internet portal Einstein Online: http://www.einstein-online.info and for his book The Einstein Window - A Journey into Space Time, Hoffmann and Campe, Hamburg 2005.

The Hanno and Ruth Roelin Award is bestowed every year to a scientist or a scientific journalist, who has successfully conveyed new knowledge concerning astronomy and space research to a wider public. The award is bestowed by the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg. The selection is made by a jury consisting of scientists and scientific journalists.

Markus Pössel completed his doctoral studies in 2003 at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute), where he has since been working as a researcher with an emphasis on the fundamentals of the general theory of relativity and the communication of information concerning it. He developed the idea for an online offering concerning relativity research that would be directed to the general public just in time for the 2005 Einstein year. Einstein Online, the name of the portal, has since developed into a broad platform that – in addition to AEI - 17 well-known universities and research institutes throughout the world take part in. The portal contains of around 500 pages of text and over 200 illustrations and animations, which are used to convey the basics and the most exciting applications of Einstein's theory of relativity. It has had more than 800,000 recorded visitors from all over the world since its release in January 2005. In addition to his online work, Pössel has written a variety of texts on the subject of relativity theory and astrophysics directed at the general public. His most recent effort has been the book The Einstein Window: A Journey into Space Time, which takes the reader on a journey that starts with fundamentals of relativity theory and then moves on to current research on black holes, the Big Bang and gravitational waves.

Pössel's reaction to the prize: "I am very happy to receive this award. My special thanks go out to my colleagues here at the AEI, who have always actively supported my activities in the area of scientific journalism, as well as to the scientists who have contributed texts and images to Einstein Online."

The award will be bestowed on September 25th in Würzburg during the festive opening session of the annual meeting of the Astronomical Society.

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