Photo Report: Lennart Nilsson Award to Babak Tafreshi and Carolyn Porco

The 2009 Lennart Nilsson Award was presented to well-known American planetary scientist and the head of Cassini spacecraft imaging team Dr. Carolyn Porco and Iranian photographer and science journalist, the founder and director of TWAN, Babak A. Tafreshi in recognition of their photographic work, which — each from its own perspective — recalls humankind’s place in the universe. The annual award is the world’s most prestigious distinction in scientific photography which is presented in honor of the legendary Swedish photographer Lennart Nilsson who has been working with imagery at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm for decades. Like Lennart Nilsson the winners of the awards are mainly those who have captured worlds that are otherwise hidden from human sight. As described by the award panel the photographs of TWAN director “reclaim a night sky that most modern people have lost. Babak Tafreshi takes us to remote places where the stars still look like they did at the dawn of mankind. His work calls to mind the beauty of the universe and human life on our planet.” The award is administered by Karolinska Institute and is given to the winners each year on October 28 in the Berwald Hall of Stockholm. On his visit to Sweden for the Lennart Nilsson Award ceremony Babak Tafreshi lectured about The World at Night for Department of Astronomy in Lund University, Tycho Brahe Astronomy Association and Skane Engineering Club in Malmo, Amateur Astronomers Association of Stockholm, Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics in University of Oslo (Norway). Public lectures by Carolyn Porco and Babak Tafreshi were also organized by the award in the prestigious Nobel Museum in Stockholm. More about 2009 Lennart Nilsson Award winners on the news: New Scientist, Sky&Telescope, Discovery News, TWAN, Karolinska Institute. Photos by Staffan Larsson and Babak Tafreshi unless otherwise noted.


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