The 2014 Arne Richter Award for Outstanding Young Scientists is awarded to Noé Lugaz for his innovative contributions to the understanding of coronal mass ejections.
Noé Lugaz has made a number breakthrough advances in the subject of coronal mass ejections (CMEs). His work bridges the gap between computational and observational solar-terrestrial physics, developing sophisticated numerical models to simulate CME expulsion and propagation in the interplanetary medium. A specific emphasis of Lugaz’s work has been the modelling of the interaction of various CMEs in space: he conducted the first 3D magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the interaction of CMEs from the Sun to the Earth. He has also made extensive use of the remote imaging capabilities of the Sun Earth Connection Coronal and Heliospheric Investigation (SECCHI) instrument suite on the STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) spacecraft, for which he developed novel techniques. A ground breaking piece of work was his harmonic mean method to analyse SECCHI observations. Its ability to predict the arrival of CMEs has been shown on many occasions to be superior to other methods and it is now widely used in the community and by official organisations. This work has many ramifications: it provides links between the solar and heliospheric disciplines and highlights the importance of numerical methods. At such a young age, Lugaz has already authored or co-authored over 30 peer-reviewed articles, some of which are widely quoted. He is an example to other young and aspiring space scientists.