By McGill Reporter Staff
McGill astrophysicist Vicky Kaspi and Prof. Gilbert Laporte of HEC Montréal are the winners of the 2017 Prix d’excellence of the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies. The awards were presented during the FRQNT Journée de la recherche held April 10 at École de technologie supérieure.
Kaspi’s “innovative work over the past years with her team at McGill University has helped to unravel the mysteries of pulsars, magnetars and, more recently, fast radio bursts, a phenomenon whose physical origins are still unknown,” the FRQNT noted.
The honour adds to Kaspi’s extensive list of recognitions and awards for her research. Last year, she became the first woman and one of the youngest researchers ever to win the Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering, NSERC’s highest honour. In 2015 she received the Canada Council’s Killam Prize for the Natural Sciences and was elected into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She holds a Canada Research Chair and the Lorne Trottier Chair in Astrophysics and Cosmology at McGill, where she is also the Director of the McGill Space Institute.
Gilbert Laporte holds the Canada Research Chair in Distribution Management. The FRQNT noted that his research has led to solutions to complex transportation problems in such areas as vehicle routing optimization, humanitarian logistics, the deployment of ambulance fleets, designing work schedules and defining electoral boundaries.
The Prix d’excellence FRQNT, in the amount of $10,000, recognizes the outstanding contributions of university or college researchers in the areas of natural sciences, mathematics and engineering, their international reputation and the benefits of their research for Québec.