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Laura Smilowitz Named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

Election as a Fellow of AAAS is an honor bestowed upon Association members by their peers

Laura Smilowitz

Laura Smilowitz of Los Alamos National Laboratory has been named Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

“Recognition as a Fellow of AAAS is a distinct honor for our scientists, and it is particularly appropriate for the work done at a national laboratory such as Los Alamos, given the breadth of our technical contributions, and the impact we have on science, policy and society,” said Carol Burns, deputy associate director for Science, Technology and Engineering at Los Alamos.

This year 396 members have been awarded this honor by AAAS because of their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. New Fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue (representing science and engineering, respectively) rosette pin on Saturday, Feb. 17 at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2018 AAAS Annual Meeting in Austin, Tex.

As part of the AAAS Section on Chemistry, Laura Smilowitz was elected Fellow for advancing our understanding of thermal explosions through development and application of diagnostics to separate and illuminate the complex interacting mechanisms controlling the response. She is in the Physical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy group at Los Alamos.

“Our team has accomplished a lot and I am extremely proud of this,” Smilowitz said. “I am grateful for the recognition by the AAAS of these accomplishments and would like to acknowledge the work of my team and mentors in our joint achievements.”

Smilowitz received a Ph.D. in physics from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1993. Following that, she was a Directors Postdoctoral Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory and then became a research associate at Brandeis University. In 1999, Smilowitz returned to LANL as a technical staff member in what is now C-PCS. She currently leads the Weapons Chemistry team in C-PCS. She received a 2014 Distinguished Performance Award for developing a new x-ray imaging capability. Her recent work has culminated in the use of penetrating radiographic techniques to study dynamic, spontaneous phenomena, which has the potential to transform our understanding of the thermal response of energetic materials.

The 2017 AAAS Fellows will be announced in the AAAS News & Notes section of the 24 November 2017 issue of the journal Science.

The tradition of AAAS Fellows began in 1874. Currently, members can be considered for the rank of Fellow if nominated by the steering groups of the Association’s 24 sections, or by any three Fellows who are current AAAS members (so long as two of the three sponsors are not affiliated with the nominee’s institution), or by the AAAS chief executive officer. Fellows must have been continuous members of AAAS for four years by the end of the calendar year in which they are elected.

About AAAS
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science (www.sciencemag.org) as well as Science Translational Medicine, Science Signaling, a digital, open-access journal, Science Advances, Science Immunology, and Science Robotics. AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes nearly 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world. The non-profit AAAS (www.aaas.org) is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, public engagement, and more. For the latest research news, log onto EurekAlert! (www.eurekalert.org), the premier science-news Web site, a service of AAAS. See www.aaas.org.