Prestigious prize goes to Petra Kohutova at RoCS
European Solar Physics Division awarded Kohutova "for important contributions to the understanding of thermal instability in the solar atmosphere, combining observations, theory, and modelling.”
The award winner is researcher at RoCS - Rosseland Centre for Solar Physics. Photo: Private
The ESPD Prize Committee was strongly impressed by Kohutova's CV, by the high quality level of her research and publications. The official award of the Prize will take place during the next ESPD Meeting that will be held in 2024. European Solar Physics Division is part of the European Physical Society
What does this prize mean to you?
- I’m very grateful to the European Solar Physics Division for the recognition of my research. It's taken years of hard work, on top of all the challenges well known to postdocs on short-term contracts, who do most of the research these days. This includes uprooting your life to move across the world every few years. I haven’t been walking this path alone, so I want to give a shout-out to all my collaborators and people who were supportive and encouraging over the course of my career so far.
Could you explain a bit about your work?
- A large part of my research has been focused on answering the questions: Does it rain on the Sun? Why? And why should we care? To do this, I have been combining numerical modelling (which tells us how we would expect our Sun to behave) and solar observations (which tell us how the Sun really behaves). Studying the formation of this ‘plasma rain’ gives us insight into how the solar atmosphere is heated. It also helps us to trace the magnetic field in the corona, because the rain droplets follow magnetic fieldlines as they fall. All of this ultimately contributes to improving our predictions of solar activity and its impacts on the Earth.