Award for Heidelberg Astrophysicist

Dr Dominika Wylezalek to receive the Ludwig Biermann Award of the German Astronomical Society

Astrophysicist Dr Dominika Wylezalek is to be honoured for her research on the evolution of galaxies and their supermassive black holes. She has been selected for the Ludwig Biermann Award, worth 3,000 euros, which the German Astronomical Society awards each year to outstanding young researchers. Dr Wylezalek and her Emmy Noether junior research group are based at the Institute for Astronomical Computing, which belongs to Heidelberg University’s Centre for Astronomy.

Dominika Wylezalek’s research focuses on exploring how galaxies form and what physical processes influence their development. She uses spectroscopic measurements to study actively growing supermassive black holes in the centres of galaxies, also known as active galactic nuclei (AGN).The goal of her research is to find evidence for the "self-regulation" of such active supermassive black holes and their host galaxies.

Dominika Wylezalek studied physics at the universities of Heidelberg und Cambridge (UK). In 2014, she earned her doctorate at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. She went on to do post-doctoral research at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore (USA) and at the European Southern Observatory in Garching near Munich as a research fellow. Since 2020, Dr Wylezalek has led the Emmy Noether junior research group "Galaxy Evolution and AGN" (GALENA). The Heidelberg scientist has previously been awarded the MERAC Prize of the European Astronomical Society for her contributions to observational astrophysics.

The Ludwig Biermann Award enables the prize winners to spend time doing research at an institution of their choice. The annual award is named after the German astrophysicist Ludwig Biermann (1907-1986). It will be presented on 12 September 2023 during the annual meeting of the German Astronomical Society in Berlin.