EANA Awards

Students Contest "Space Factor"

The EANA Students Contest "Space Factor" was established in 2011 and has been organized since then during the annual EANA Astrobiology Conference by Dr. Ralf Moeller, Institute of Aerospace Medicine, DLR. Since 2020, Marta Cortesão, DLR (since 2023 together with Stella Koch, DLR) continues to organize the contest, as one of several EANA education and support activities for young scientists in Astrobiology.
At each EANA conference, a session is dedicated solely to the EANA students contest, where early-career scientists (MSc students, PhD candidates or Post-Docs) present their research to all other participants of the conference, being evaluated by five different astrobiology experts.

Poster Awards

It is a tradition of EANA to award prizes for the best posters presented by students and young scientists at the annual workshops. A distinguished team of astrobiologists evaluates the posters based the scientific and presentation quality.




2023 Space Factor Students Contest

Due to the high number of participants this year, the EANA council decided to award 6 awards in total, separated into MSc and PhD awardees. The winners of the 2023 contest were awarded with a cash prize and a book voucher donated by International Journal of Astrobiology / Cambridge University Press. The award ceremony was led by EANA`s President Jean-Pierre de Vera and Students Contest organizers Marta Cortesão and Stella Koch during the closing session of EANA 2023.

PhD Awardees

1st prize
Silvia Pagnoscin et al.
Combined remote sensing and laboratory analysis to search for signs of life on Europa

2nd prize
Carolin Krämer et al.
There \& Back again: Developing a tool for testing of antimicrobial surfaces for space habitat design

3rd prize
Samir Chitnavis et al.
Feasibility of Photosynthesis around Red Dwarf Stars: A Thermodynamic Model

MSc Awardees

1st prize
David Rodrigues et al.
Engineering perchlorate resistance in cyanobacteria to enable long-term bioregenerative life support systems for crewed Mars missions

2nd prize
Ines Figueiredo et al.
Filamentous fungi for sustainable resource utilization in space habitats

3rd prize
Afonso Mota et al.
Beyond the Solar System: Search for Microbial Life on Exoplanets and the Role of Melanin

2023 Poster Awards

The winners of the 2023 contest were awarded with a cash prize and a book prize donated by the publisher Springer at the closing ceremony of EANA 2023.

List of awarded posters (random order):
  • Jana Fahrion et al.
    Preparation for the ARTHROSPIRA-C space flight experiment – Insights from ground tests
  • Salomé Lagasse de Locht et al.
    Simulation of a prebiotic carbonate-rich pond to investigate the effect of UV radiation on glycine
  • Laura Zucconi et al.
    A preliminary survey of the cellular responses of black fungus Cryomyces antarcticus to long- and short-term dehydrations
  • Beatriz Gallego Fernandez et al.
    Responses of hydrated biofilms of Chroococcidiopsis sp. 029 to simulated Martian surface conditions
  • Pablo L. Finkel et al.
    Characterization and paleoreconstruction of a polar lacustrine environment using lipid biomarkers
  • Costanza Maria Martella et al.
    Development of a cyanobacterial biosensor for real-time monitoring of space radiation response
  • Christian Lorenz et al.
    UV photo-degradation of the secondary lichen substance parietin: a spectroscopy analysis
  • Cassie Hopton et al.
    Habitability of icy moon subsurface oceans: limits of microbial growth in ammonia and alkaline brines



2021 Virtual Contests

The year 2021 was a special year - celebrating the 20th anniversary of EANA. Next to the EANA21 Outstanding Paper Award, at EANA21 several awards were given for the different types of virtual, scientific presentations. The prices were donated by the publishers Springer and Mary Ann Liebert, by Agência Espacial Portuguesa - Portugal Space, as well as by UNICAM SISTEMAS ANAL&Iecute;TICOS. Next to the Space Factor contest (organized by Marta Cortesão) and the online poster session (organized by Ruth-Sophie Taubner), EANA21 also awarded the best scientific presentations from all oral presentations. The winners were awarded by EANA\'s President Barbara Cavalazzi during the closing session.



2021 Space Factor Students Contest

1st prize
Sebastian Victor Gfellner et al.
Introducing the FORAminifera Rocket EXperiment (FORAREX)

2nd prize
Bárbara Soares et al.
Composition of terrestrial planets orbiting M dwarfs

3rd prize
Marina Fernandez et al.
Interstellar phosphorus chemistry as a complex system: a theoretical approach to the formation of the simplest building blocks of life

4th prize
Hector Palomeque et al.
Ignicoccus hospitalis – understanding its extraordinary radiation tolerance and an unsolved archaeal repair system

2021 Poster Awards

List of awarded posters (random order):
  • Ophelia Gunn and Charles Cockell
    Could Fluid Inclusions in Polar Ice Provide a Sanctuary for Martian Microorganisms?
  • Eduardo J. Cueto Diaz et al.
    CO2 adsorption capacities in amine-functionalized microporous silica nanoparticles
  • Víctor M. Rivilla et al.
    Discovery in space of ethanolamine, the simplest phospholipid head group
These posters were awarded with a book donated from Springer as well as a 1-year online subscription of Astrobiology, Mary Ann Liebert.
  • Vera Palma et al.
    Assessment of lipid biomarkers from Mars analogue subsurface environments
  • Caroline Brachmann et al.
    Modelling the composition of volcanic gases on young terrestrial planets in the C-H-O-N-S system
  • Bernardo Barosa et al.
    At the dawn of metabolism- How Aquificae can shed light into the evolution of carbon fixation and hydrogen oxidation
These posters were also awarded with a book donated from Springer.

EANA 20th Anniversary Presentation Award

  • Annemiek C. Waajen et al.
    How the presence of meteorites could have shaped microbial communities on early Earth
  • Kristina Beblo-Vranesevic et al.
    From Mars analogue environments to space: ground data evaluation of the survivability of Buttiauxella sp. MASE-IM-9 and Salinisphaera shabanensis
  • Lena Noack and Caroline Brachmann
    Can plate tectonics lead to observational traces in (exo-)planetary atmospheres?



2020 Virtual Contests

The 2020 conference was quite different to all previous meetings organized by EANA due the Covid-19 pandemic. The conference was organized as a virtual meeting, but still included an online edition of the Space Factor contest (organized by Marta Cortesão) as well as an online poster session (organized by Ruth-Sophie Taubner). We would like to thank our judges: Adrienne Kish, Ana Miller, Cyprien Versaux, Ewa Szuszkiewicz and Mickael Baqué. The winners were awarded with a cash prize and a book prize donated by the publisher Springer as well as by private book donations from Barbara Cavalazzi and Charles Cockell. The winners were awarded by EANA\'s President Barbara Cavalazzi and EANA Secretary Ruth-Sophie Taubner during the closing session.



2020 Space Factor Students Contest

1st prize
Bea Baharier, Julia Semprich, Karen Olsson-Francis, Jake R. Crandall, Justin Filiberto, Sally L. Potter-McIntyre, Scott Perl, and Susanne P.Schwenzer
From the San Rafael Swell to Mars

2nd prize
Arianna Ricchiuti and Fabio Pagan
Communicating Astrobiology: the role of Italian planetariums

3rd prize
Grace Richards, Victoria Pearson, Geraint Morgan, Manish Patel, and Simon Sheridan
Analysis of VOCs from Enceladus\' surface ice

4th prize
Ophelia Gunn and Charles Cockell
The Effect of Anions on Brine Evaporite Morphologies and the Implications for Extraterrestrial Habitability

2020 Poster Awards

List of awarded posters (random order):
  • E. Mateo-Marti, S. Galvez-Martinez, C. Gil-Lozano, and Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Pyrite-induced uv-photocatalytic abiotic nitrogen fixation: implications for early atmospheres and life
  • Lena Noack
    Volcanic outgassing on stagnant-lid planets vs. plate tectonics planets
  • Marta Cortesao, Katharina Siems, Stella Koch, David J Smith, and Ralf Moeller
    MARSBOx: microbes in a box, in a balloon, exposed to Mars-like conditions
  • Rosa Santomartino, Annemiek Waajen, Wessel de Wit, Ralf Moeller, Petra Rettberg, Felix M. Fuchs, Rob Van Houdt, Ilse Coninx, Natalie Leys, Charles S. Cockell and the BioRock team
    Microbe-mineral interaction and biomining on the International Space Station: BioRock and BioAsteroid
  • A. Dugdale, N. K. Ramkissoon, P. Fawdon, S. M. R. Turner, S. P. Schwenzer, K. Olsson-Francis and V. K. Pearson
    Development of Oxia Planum simulant relevant to the ExoMars mission



2019 Space Factor Students Contest

This 2019 student contributions were judged by Kai Finster, Adrienne Kish, Rocco Mancinelli, Elias Chatzitheodoridis, and Ewa Szuszkiewicz. The winners were awarded with a cash prize and a book prize donated by the publishers Springer and the International Journal of Astrobiology / Cambridge University Press. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Barbara Cavalazzi and Students Contest chairs Lena Noack and Marta Cortesão during the closing session of EANA 2019.
1st prize
Stella Koch
Addressing the fungal contamination - testing antifungal materials and radiation-driven decontamination methods

2nd prize
Lora Jovanović
Pluto, a distant cousin of the primitive Earth?

3rd prize
Barnabé Cherville
Optimization of the LAb-CosmOrbitrap experiment negative ion mode



2019 Poster Awards

All posters of early career scientists were evaluated by a jury consisting of several members of EANA (Tetyana Milojevic, Kai Finster, Kensei Kobayashi, John Brucato, Ruth-Sophie Taubner, Ewa Szuszkiewicz, Barbara Cavalazzi, Mickael Baqué, and Elias Chatzitheodoridis).
The publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press/International Journal of Astrobiology donated the book prizes for the awardees. The winners were awarded by EANA\'s President Barbara Cavalazzi and the poster contest organizer Lena Noack during the closing session of EANA 2019.

List of awarded posters (random order):
  • Siveen Thlaijeh
    Application of two-step laser mass spectrometry to the characterization of fossil organic matter and prospects for Exobiology
  • Alex B. Price
    Microbial nitrate-dependent Fe(II) oxidation: mechanisms and astrobiological significance
  • Giovanni Poggiali
    OSIRIS-REx sample return space mission exploring primitive carbonaceous asteroid Bennu: Spectroscopy of laboratory analogs to understand data from an astrobiology-relevant target
  • Russell Deitrick
    THOR: A Fast and Flexible 3D GCM for the Study of Exoplanets
  • Antonín Knížek
    Formation of (per)chlorates on Mars
  • Paola Modica
    Amino acids from photo- and thermo-processing of extraterrestrial ices: a possible source for further prebiotic chemistry
  • Marta Cortesão
    Effect of simulated microgravity on the filamentous fungus Aspergillus niger



2018 Space Factor Students Contest

We thank the jury members for evaluating the contributions of all ten participants of the "Space Factor" students contest. The jury consisted of several members of the EANA council and EANA members. The winners were awarded with a cash prize and a book prize donated by the publishers Springer and the International Journal of Astrobiology / Cambridge University Press. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Frances Westall and Students Contest chairs Ralf Möller and Lena Noack during the closing session of EANA 2018.


All participants of the 2018 "Space Factor" students contest together with the EANA president Frances Westall (left) and student contest main organizer Ralf Möller (right) and the winner of the Kate Rubins - Space Microbiology Award.

1st prize
Peter M. Higgins and Charles Cockell
A New Model to Estimate Energy Flow and Biomass in Terrestrial and Extraterrestrial Environments

2nd prize
Marta Cortesao et al.
Fungi in space: Implications for astronaut health and planetary protection

3rd prize
Maria Cavallius et al.
Water Vapour in the Beta Pictoris Debris Disk

4th prize
Mariano Battistuzzi et al.
An experimental setup to study by remote sensing analyses cyanobacteria growth and photosynthetic performances under non-terrestrial simulated environments

5th prize
Arjen Boosman et al.
UV-induced methane and volatile organic carbon emission from the Murchison carbonaceous chondrite

In addition, two new prizes were awarded for early-career researcher presentations. The Kate Rubins - Space Microbiology Award for Young Researchers was awarded to Katharina Siems.


The winners of the new "Horneck-Brack-Award" donated by Frances Westall (2nd from left) and Jean-Pierre de Vera (right on the left picture). The winners are from left to right: Tim Lichtenberg, Dennis Höning and Nozair Khawaja (right picture).

A second new prize was given in the name of the founders of Astrobiology in Europe - the Horneck-Brack Award, initiated by Jean-Pierre de Vera and Karen Olsson-Francis.

1st prize
Nozair Khawaja et al.
Complex macromolecular organic material from the subsurface ocean of Enceladus

2nd prize
Tim Lichtenberg et al.
Gradual desiccation of rocky protoplanets from aluminum-26 heating

3rd prize
Dennis Höning et al.
Long-term water and carbon cycles and habitability of terrestrial planets

2018 Poster Awards

All posters of early career scientists were evaluated by a jury consisting of several members of EANA and DAbG.
The publisher Springer and the International Journal of Astrobiology / Cambridge University Press donated a book prize for all awardees. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Frances Westall and the poster contest organizer Lena Noack during the closing session of EANA 2018.

List of awarded posters (random order):
  • Fabian Klenner et al.
    Analog Mass Spectra of Astrobiologically Relevant Organic Material for Spaceborne Mass Spectrometers
  • Sebastian Wolf et al.
    OREOcube - ORganics Exposure in Orbit: Photostability of organic molecules and biomarkers in space and planetary environments
  • Solmaz Adeli et al.
    Phyllosilicates and chlorides in evaporitic setting as key targets in the search for life on Mars
  • Jacob Heinz et al.
    Halotolerance of Planococcus halocryophilus in chloride and perchlorate brines
  • Prathana Desai et al.
    Development of Compact Sensor System for Detection of Water Activity
  • Fabian Schmidt and Jan Hendrik Bredehöft
    Interstellar formic acid by versatile water chemistry



2017 Space Factor Students Contest

We thank the jury members for evaluating the contributions of all eigth participants of the "Space Factor" students contest. The jury consisted of Rocco Mancinelli, Petra Rettberg, Daniela Billi, Silvano Onofri and Kensei Kobayashi. The winners were awarded with a cash prize, a one-year subscription to the journal Astrobiology, and a book prize donated by the publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press. The winners were awarded by EANA`s Vice-President Nils Holm and Students Contest chair Lena Noack during the closing session of EANA 17.

1st prize Alex Price, The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Autotrophy and biomineralisation of nitrate-dependent iron oxidisers on Mars-relevant mineral substrate

2nd prize Diana Boy, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Hannover, Germany
Abundance of radiation-resistant bacteria along an aridity gradient in the Atacama Desert -- Are radiation- and desiccation resistance connected from the habitat perspective?

3rd prize
Cyprien Verseux, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy
Cyanobacteria as a substrate for heterotrophs -- Implications for biological life-support systems on Mars


From left to right: Isabell Wolf (Poster award), Diana Boy (2nd prize students contest), Theresa Backhaus (Poster award), Cyprien Verseux (3rd prize students contest), Philippe Nauny (Poster award), Mayvis Musariri (Sohan Jheeta award), Lara Maldanis (Sohan Jheeta award), Uyama Taichi (Poster award), Alex Price (1st prize students contest).



2017 Poster Awards

All posters of early career scientists were evaluated by a jury consisting of Jan Jehlicka, Rosa de la Torre Noetzel, Severine Robert, Kristina Beblo-Vranesevic, Kristina Kislyakova, Nils Holm, Nigel Mason and Elias Chatzitheodoridis.
The publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press donated a book prize for all four awardees. The winners were awarded by EANA`s Vice-President Nils Holm during the closing session of EANA 17.

List of awarded posters in alphabetical order:
  • Isabell Wolf, University of Hohenheim
    co-authored by H. L. Pleyer, H. Strasdeit, S. Fox
    Laboratory Simulation of the Thermal Racemization of L-Alanine in Tide Pools of Primordial Volcanic Islands
  • Theresa Backhaus, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf
    co-authored by S. Ott
    Primary results of the analysis of the lichen Buellia frigida after 1.5 years of space exposure during the BIOMEX project
  • Uyama Taichi, University of Tokyo
    co-authored by Hashimoto Jun, Kuzuhara Masayuki, Tamura Motohide, D. Brandt Timothy, Tanigawa Takayuki, Aoyama Yuhiko
    Search for Exoplanet around Young Stellar Objects
  • Philippe Nauny, University of Glasgow
    co-authored by K. Simutis, J. Nainys, L. Mazutis, M. R. Lee, J. L. Toney, V. R. Phoenix
    Dry riverbed in the Atacama desert: a depth profile analysis for biosignatures



2016 Space Factor Students Contest


From left to right: EANA president Frances Westall, students contest winners Felix M. Fuchs, Camilla Calabrese und Hannes L. Pleyer, together with students contest organizer Ralf Möller

1st prize
Camilla Calabrese, Università di Bologna, Dipartimento di Chimica "G. Ciamician", Italy
High Resolution Millimeter Wave Absorption Spectroscopy: from the laboratory data to the astronomical surveys

2nd prize
Felix Matthias Fuchs, German Aerospace Center (DLR e.V.), Institute of Aerospace Medicine, Radiation Biology Department, Space Microbiology Research Group, Germany
Floating in space: Influence of simulated microgravity on Bacillus subtilis biofilm formation - An electron microscopic study for whole biofilm analysis

3rd prize
Hannes L. Pleyer, University of Hohenheim, Institute of Chemistry, Department of Bioinorganic Chemistry, Germany
Metalation of a Model Porphyrin in Simulated Primordial Tide Pools: Possible Prebiotic Formation of Porphyrin‐Type Cofactors

2016 Poster Awards

During EANA 16, all posters were evaluated by a jury consisting of K. Lehto, C. Muller, K. Finster, F. Westall, C. Panitz, S. Leuko and N. Holm.
The publisher Springer donated a book prize for all seven awardees. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Frances Westall during the closing session of EANA 16.


From left to right: Marta Cortesao, Avinash Dass, EANA president Frances Westall, Marc-Nicolas Rentinck, Greta Lamers and Frederic Foucher


List of awarded posters in alphabetical order:
  • Marta Cortesao, co-authored by Ralf Möller
    Space Vacuum: The Spores’ Forgotten Menace?

  • Avinash Vicholous Dass, co-authored by Hickman-Lewis Keyron, Brack André, Kee Terence, Westall Frances
    Stochastic prebiotic chemistry within realistic geological systems

  • Frederic Foucher, co-authored by Nicolas Bost, Sylvain Janiec, Frances Westall, Pascal Perron, Aicha Fonte, Nicole Le Breton, Jianyu Li, Thomas Platel, Michel Tagger, Michel Viso, Pascale Chazalnoel, Frederic Courtade, Michel Villenave
    LithoSpace: an automated system for in situ petrographic thin section preparation on Mars

  • Pauli Laine
    Detecting biomarkers by means of teraherz remote sensing

  • Greta Lamers, co-authored by Stefan Leuko, Petra Rettberg
    Repair of polychromatic radiation induced DNA damage in the archeon Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1

  • Marc-Nicolas Rentinck, co-authored by Alessandro Airo
    Bioflumology: Cyanobacterial biomat morphologies under different fluid flow conditions

  • Jennifer Wadsworth, co-authored by Charles S. Cockell, Ralf Möller
    The double-edged sword of Iron oxides: Their protective and destructive effects on life on the Early Earth and present-day Mars


2015 Space Factor Students Contest

1st and 3rd prize winners of the contest with the jury members and organizer of the student contest:
Franco Ferrari, Jean-Pierre de Vera, Iulia Myrgorodska, Maximilian Mora, André Brack, José Eduardo González-Pastor, Frances Westall and Ralf Möller.
1st prize
Iuliia Myrgorodska, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, France
Asymmetric photolysis of chiral molecules of prebiotic importance at synchrotron SOLEIL

2nd prize
Ruth-Sophie Taubner, Research Platform ExoLife, University of Vienna, Austria
A new method for quantification of methane production of hydrogenotrophic methanogens

3rd prize
Maximilian Mora, Center for medical research, Graz, Austria
The swimming behaviour of hyperthermophiles – or: how to survive potential early Earth conditions

2015 Poster Awards

During EANA 15, all 64 posters were evaluated by a jury consisting of H. Lehto, C. Cockell, P. Rettberg, J. Brucato, H. Cottin, D. Billi and K. Finster.
The publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press donated a book prize for all seven awardees. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Frances Westall and Honorary President Gerda Horneck during the closing session of EANA 15.

Organizers, awardees and jury members of the poster award:
Gerda Horneck, Frances Westall, Iulia Myrgorodska, Simone Martini, Carlos Banchon, Lena Noack, Ralf Möller (for Marina Raguse), Krzysztof Rychert, Kai Finster, Felix Matthias Fuchs, Harry Lehto and Daniela Billi.

List of awarded posters in alphabetical order:
  • Iulia Myrgorodska, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, France, co-authored by Cornelia Meinert, Pierre de Marcellus, Louis le Sergeant d’Hendecourt, Laurent Nahon and Uwe J. Meierhenrich
    Asymmetric photolysis of chiral molecules of prebiotic importance at synchrotron SOLEIL

  • Carlos Banchon, Microbial Systems Ecology, Department of microbiology, TU München, Freising, Germany / DLR, Köln, Germany, co-authored by Stefan Leuko, Petra Rettberg and Natuschka Lee
    The potential use of halophiles for environmental management on and beyond Earth

  • Felix Matthias Fuchs, German Aerospace Center, Institute of Aerospace Medicine, Radiation Biology Department, Cologne, Germany, co-authored by Petra Rettberg, Joerg Stuelke, Delma Childers, Charles Cockell, Kai Finster, Ruth Hemmersbach and Ralf Moeller
    “Slime but fine” -- New insights about Bacillus subtilis biofilm formation and robustness under simulated space conditions

  • Simone Martini, University of Florence, Italy / Univerily of Leiden, Leiden Observatory, the Netherlands, co-authored by E.P.Monaghan and P.Ehrenfreund
    Biology of Mars Soil Analogues, Biomolecules preservation and their relationship with life

  • Lena Noack, Department of Reference Systems and Planetology, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Belgium, co-authored by Dennis Höning, Attilio Rivoldini, Clemens Heistracher, Nastasia Zimov, H. Lammer, Tim Van Hoolst and Jan Hendrik Bredehöft
    Water-rich planets: How habitable is a water layer deeper than on Earth?

  • Marina Raguse, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Aerospace Medicine, Radiation Biology Department, Cologne, Germany, co-authored by M. Fiebrandt, K. Stapelmann, P. Eaton, F. Narberhaus, P. Awakowiczand R. Moeller
    Plasma sterilization as an innovative tool for the next generation of planetary protection

  • Krzysztof Rychert, Department of Ecology, Pomeranian University in Słupsk, Poland, co-authored by Beata Mendrzejewska and Anna Kiestrzyń
    Dynamics of oxygen consumption during formation of the anoxic zone


2014 Space Factor Students Contest


All participants and judges of the 2014 Students Contest
From left to rigth: Daniela Billi, Giuseppe Gallo, Kirsi Lehto, Claudia Hahn, Rocco L. Mancinelli, Frances Westall, Bo Byloos, Katja Nagler (2nd prize), Sherry L. Cady, Alexandra Perras (1st prize), Charles S. Cockell, Corinna Panitz, Dagmar Koschnitzki (3rd prize), Ralf Moeller, Michaela Musilova, Claudia Pacelli (Image by Natasha Nicholson).

1st prize
Alexandra Perras, Department of Internal Medicine, Medical University of Graz, Austria
Grappling hooks: The life style and ultrastructure of the SM1 Euryarchaeon which thrives in a Mars analogue site

2nd prize
Katja Nagler, Institute of Aerospace Medicine, German Aerospace Center, Germany
Analysis of Bacillus subtilis spore germination in high-salinity environments

3rd prize
Dagmar Koschnitzki, Institute of Aerospace Medicine, German Aerospace Center, Germany
Ignicoccus hospitalis shows high radiation tolerance although never exposed to it in its natural habitat

2014 Poster Awards

During EANA 14, the 64 posters were evaluated by a distinguished team of astrobiologists consisting of Lewis Dartnell (UK), Kai Finster (Denmark), Kensei Kobayashi (Japan), Kirsi Lehto (Finland), Manesh Patel (UK) and Henry Strasdeit (Germany).
Thanks to the generosity of the publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press, each awardee received a recent book topical to astrobiology in addition to the poster prize document. The winners were awarded by EANA`s President Frances Westall and Honorary President Gerda Horneck during the closing session of EANA 14.

Picture of the winners of the poster award1, subsidiary colleagues2 and organizers3 of the 2014 EANA poster awards.

From left to right:

Jean-Pierre de Vera2 (for awardee Dennis Höning1), Gerda Horneck3, Frances Westall3, Casey Bryce1, Maximilian Mora1, Tetyana Milojevic1, Bo Byloos1and Dominic Papineau2 (for awardee Matthew S. Dodd1).

Image courtesy of Natasha Nicholson.

List of awarded posters in alphabetical order:
  • Casey Bryce, UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK, co-authored by Sarah Martin, Thierry Le Bihan, Timothy Bush, Bryan Spears, Alanna Moore, Jesse Harrison, Natalie Leys, Bo Byloos and Charles Cockell
    Rock geochemistry drives stress and starvation responses in the bacterial proteome

  • Bo Byloos, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Belgian Nuclear Research Center SCK-CEN, Mol, Belgium, co-authored by Rob Van Houdt, Nico Boon and Natalie Leys
    Potential of Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34 for biomining from lunar-like basalt by determining the molecular mechanisms behind microbe-mineral interactions

  • Matthew S. Dodd, London Centre for Nanotechnology and Department of Earth Sciences, University College London, UK, co-authored by Dominic Papineau
    Biosignatures of early life in >3.8Ga Banded Iron Formations?

  • Dennis Höning, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Planetary Research, Berlin, Germany, co-authored by T. Spohn
    A Thermal Evolution Model of the Earth Including the Biosphere, Continental Growth and Mantle Hydration

  • Maximilian Mora, University of Graz, Austria, co-authored by Daniel Eckl, Michael Mauermeier and Christine Moissl-Eichinger
    ARBEX - Archaeal and bacterial extremophiles onboard the International Space Station ISS

  • Tetyana Milojevic, Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics Division, and Department of Biophysical Chemistry, University of Vienna, Austria, co-authored by Ziga Zebec, Simon Rittmann, Melina Kerou and Christa Schleper
    Iron-oxidising thermoacidophilic archaeon Metallosphaera sedula: insights into astrobiological application


EANA 2013 Space Factor Students Contest


All participants and judges of the 2013 Students Contest


1st prize
Jan Frösler
The influence of extracellular polymeric substances on the tolerance of Deinococcus geothermalis to the environmental conditions of space and Mars

2nd prize
Paloma Serrano
Methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost: response to simulated Martian conditions and biosignature description

3rd prize
Yuko Kawaguchi
Microbes in clay micro-particles collided with ultralow density silica aerogel at 4km/s can be detected by fluorescence imaging





EANA 2012 Space Factor Students Contest

In a half-day session on October 16th, 2012 the student contest “The Space Factor" was held for the second time, organized and chaired by Ralf Moeller (German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR), Cologne, Germany)) and co-chaired by Oleg Gusev (National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences, Tsukuba, Japan). In the student contest, 10 young scientists, PhD students from different research fields covering chemistry, cosmology, mineralogy, microbiology and planetology, introduced themselves and their research with oral talk and a poster presentation to all conference participants. An interdisciplinary committee board (Kai Finster (Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark), Nils G. Holm (Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden), Helmut Lammer (Space Research Institute, Graz, Austria), and Natalia B. Gontareva (Institute of Cytology, St. Petersburg, Russia) judged the contributions of all participating PhD students.
The EANA 2012 student contest was generously supported with several prizes (e.g. online journal subscription, Svante Arrhenius Astrobiology Award and prize money) by the Astrobiology Journal (Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.), DLR’s Radiation Biology Department and the Helmholtz Space Life Sciences Research School (SpaceLife), which is gratefully acknowledged here.

Picture of the participants1, reviewers2 and organizer3 of the 2012 EANA students contest "The Space Factor".

From left to right:
Ralf Möller3, Nils G. Holm2, Alfonso Delgado Bonal1, Kai Finster2, Ebbe Norskov Bak1, Siddharth Hegde1, Stefanie Lutz1, Mickael Baqué1, Petra Schwendner1, Natalia B. Gontareva2


Missing on the picture are:
Oleg Gusev3, Helmut Lammer2, Jan Marie Andersen1, Aristodimos Vasileiadis1, Arkadii V. Tarasevych1, Gayathri Murukesan1). Image courtesy of Marko Wassmann.


1st prize
Jan Marie Andersen (Københavns Universitet, Niels Bohr Institute, Centre for Star and Planet Formation, Copenhagen, Denmark / NSF Graduate Research Fellow at Boston University Astronomy Department, Boston, USA)
Talk and poster: M dwarfs as planet hosts: consequences of stellar activity on exoplanet detection
2nd prize
Petra Schwendner (Universität Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany / DLR Cologne, Germany)
Talk and poster: Monitoring of the microbial community during simulated flight to Mars
3rd prize
Mickael Baqué (University of Rome "Tor Vergata", Rome, Italy)
Talk and poster: BIOMEX-Desert Cyanobacteria: ground simulations of the EXPOSE-R2 mission


EANA 2012 Poster Awards

The posters presented at EANA12 were evaluated by co-chairs according to the scientific and presentation quality. Eight poster book awards were granted to the following recipients:
  • Siddharth Hegde for his poster "Colors of extreme exo-Earths environments"
  • Samuel Regandell for "Spectral synthesis for protoplanetary disk models"
  • Franz Leißing for "The thermal stability of tetrapyrrols: exploring the limits"
  • Veronika Grosz for "Continuous, in situ measurement of the altitude-dependent change of UV radiation and its effects on biological systems"
  • Lauri Nikkanen for "Origin of cellular life: The earliest genome was of eukaryotic type?"
  • Jun Kawai for "Self-assembly of Titan tholins in environments simulating Titan liquidospheres andits implication to formation of primitive membrane in Titan"
  • Engy Ahmed for "Soil Microorganisms and Mineral Weathering: Mechanics of Biotite Dissolution"
  • Joachim Meeßen for "Comparative studies on the morphological-anatomical, chemical, and physiological properties of four space-relevant lichen species to assess their high potential in resisting extreme environmental conditions"
The book awards were kindly donated by the publishers Springer and Cambridge University Press.


EANA 2011 Space Factor Students Contest


Award ceremony 2011

All participants 2011


1st prize
Anja Bauermeister (a PhD student from the University of Duisburg/Essen, Biofilm Centre, Essen, Germany and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), Insititue of Aerospace Medicine, Radiation Biology, Cologne, Germany) gave the Best Young Researcher presentation, entitled
Could acidophilic iron-sulfur bacteria be suitable model organisms for Mars?
2nd prize
Francisco Javier Sánchez Iñigo, PhD student (from Earth Observation Department, INTA. Ctra. de Ajalvir, Km. 4, Torrejón de Ardoz, 28850 Madrid, Spain)
Presentation title: Resistance of Rhizocarpon geographicum to UV-B and UV-C radiation in a hydrated- and desiccated state
3rd prize
Aditya Chopra, PhD student (from The Australian National University, Planetary Science Institute, Canberra, Australia)
Presentation title: What do the elemental abundances tell us about the universality of life?


EANA 2011 Poster Awards

The posters presented at EANA11 were evaluated by co-chairs according to the scientific and presentation quality. Five poster book awards were granted to the following recipients:
  • Ana-Catalina Plesa for her poster "Thermo-chemical evolution and the atmospheric evolution of terrestrial planets"
  • Aditya Chopra for his posters "What do the elemental abundances tell us about universality of life?" and "Elemental insights into the site of the origin and early evolution of life on Earth"
  • Lena Noack for her poster "Plate tectonics on Earth-like planets: Implications for habitability"
  • Shin-ichi Yokobori for his poster "Capture and space exposure experiments of microorganisms on the ISS orbit proposed in "TANPOPO" mission"
  • Gopal Pathak for his poster "A novel DNA repair enzyme from Acinetobacter sp. Ver3 isolated from an extreme environment"
The book awards were donated by the publishers Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, Springer, and Wiley VCH, which is highly appreciated.