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[SAO/NASA ADS]   ADS Awards and Recognition

This page describes some of the awards presented to the NASA Astrophysics Data System and to individual team members highlighting the importance of the ADS services to the scientific community.

The NASA Astrophysics Archival Senior Review Panel ranked ADS first among 6 projects in its 2008 assessment. "ADS is so extensively used by the entire professional astronomy community that it is hard to imagine existing without it," commented the panel. The full report is available at

The Royal Astronomical Society has awarded the 2008 Award for Services to Astronomy to Gunther Eichhorn for his work as "the project manager for the NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS), the online database that includes the vast majority of astronomical literature. ADS gives open access to astronomical research material and has revolutionised the field, allowing astronomers and others to investigate publications on an equal basis." (See press release at ).

The United Nations General Assembly commended the ADS for "the mirror sites of the NASA-funded Astrophysics Data System (ADS). . . had been enthusiastically accepted by the scientific community and had become important assets for developing countries . . . " (Excerpt from "United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, Report on the United Nations/European Space Agency/National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the United States of America Workshop on the International Heliophysical Year 2007) (Abu Dhabi and Al-Ain, United Arab Emirates, 20-23 November 2005) Report number A/AC105_856 (available online at ).

The United Nations General Assembly commended the ADS for "its work and success in laying out and implementing road maps for the improved access for all scientists to the scientific literature. . ." (Excerpt from "United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, Report on the Twelfth United Nations/European Space Agency Workshop on Basic Space Science (Beijing, 24-28 May 2004.") Report number A/AC105_829 (available online at ).

The United Nations General Assembly ". . . noted the great value of NASA's Astrophysics Data System in providing access to astronomical literature. Participants urge industrialized countries to ensure continuing support for free access to the system. . ." (Excerpt from "United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, Report on the Tenth United Nations/European Space Agency Workshop on Basic Space Science: Exploring the Universe; Sky Surveys, Space Exploration and Space Technologies (Reduit, Mauritius, 25-29 June 2001.") Report number A/AC.105.766 (available online at ).

U.S. National Academy of Science: "NASA's initiative for the Astrophysics Data System has vastly increased the accessibility of the scientific literature for astronomers. NASA deserves credit for this valuable initative and is urged to continue it." (Excerpt from Astronomy and Astrophysics in the New Millennium, Policy Recommendations for NASA, p. 193. Available online at ).

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Visiting Committee: "It is no exaggeration to say that ADS has revolutionized the use of the astronomical literature, dramatically changed the use and focus of astronomical libraries, empowered astronomy research in underdeveloped countries and small institutions, and is probably the most valuable single contribution to astronomy research that the CfA has made in its lifetime." (From Report of the CfA Visiting Committee, 2002)

The American Astronomical Society awarded the 2001 van Biesbroeck Prize to Michael Kurtz, "... the visionary designer of the Astrophysics Data System (ADS) which clearly has revolutionized for over a decade the speed and thoroughness in which astronomers now can search and access the vast and still growing technical literature." (Excerpt from Physics Today, Vol. 54, iss.6, p. 72. Available online at ).

The Special Libraries Association awarded the 2001 Physics, Astronomy and Mathematics Division Award to Guenther Eichhorn for his role "in the genesis and growth of the Astrophysics Data System, the development of which represents an unparalleled shift in the propagation of the literature of astronomy. ... Under your leadership, the ADS ... has become an indispensable aid to astronomical research." (Excerpt from Physics Today, Vol. 54, iss.8 , p. 61. Available online at ).