American Philosophical Society
Member History

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1Name:  Dr. Riccardo Giacconi
 Institution:  Johns Hopkins University
 Year Elected:  2001
 Class:  1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences
 Subdivision:  101. Astronomy
 Residency:  Resident
 Living? :   Deceased
 Birth Date:  1931
 Death Date:  December 9, 2018
Riccardo Giacconi received his Ph.D. at the University of Milan in 1954. He was a professor and associate director of the Harvard/Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (1973-82); director of the Space Telescope Science Institute (1981, 1993); professor at the University of Milan (1991-99); and director general of the European Southern Observatory (1993-99). A professor at the Johns Hopkins University after 1982, he also served as president of Associated Universities, Inc. from 1999 on. One of the founders of x-ray astronomy, Riccardo Giacconi was the leader of the teams that detected the first cosmic x-ray source, made the first x-ray image of the sun, and developed and operated the early UHURU x-ray satellite and the Einstein x-ray telescope. He played a major role in the early definition of the Chandra X-ray Observatory. As the first director of the Space Telescope Science Institute, as director of the European Southern Observatory, and throughout his career, he made outstanding contributions to the development of astronomy and was a forceful spokesman for international science. Dr. Giacconi was the recipient of the Helen B. Warner Award of the American Astronomical Society; the Elliott Cresson Medal of the Franklin Institute; the Catherine Wolfe Bruce Gold Medal of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific; the Dannie Heineman Prize of Astrophysics from the American Astronomical Society and the American Institute of Physics; the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society; and the Wolf Prize in Physics. He received the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physics and the National Medal of Science in 2005. Dr. Giacconi was a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, l'Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, and the Royal Astronomical Society. He was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2001. Riccardo Giacconi died on December 9, 2018 in La Jolla, California at the age of 87.
Election Year
2001 (1)