Royal Microscopical Society Medal Series
The RMS Medal Series, awards scientific achievements in each of the Science Sections as well as awarding the unsung heroes and those who volunteer a huge amount of their time and energy to the RMS, helping the next generation of microscopists.
- President's Medal for Services to the Society
- Vice-Presidents' Medal for Microscopy Research and Laboratory Support
- Alan Agar Medal for Electron Microscopy
- Medal for Light Microscopy
- Medal for Flow Cytometry
- Medal for Life Sciences
- Medal for Innovation in Applied Microscopy for Materials Science
- Medal for Scanning Probe Microscopy
President's Medal for Services to the Society
The RMS President’s Medal is awarded for an exceptional voluntary contribution to the work of the RMS.
2017 Winner - to be announced soon...
Vice-Presidents' Medal for Microscopy Research and Laboratory Support
The Vice-Presidents' Medal recognises the 'unsung heroes' of microscopy by making an award to an engineer, technician or laboratory research support scientist
2017 Winner - Dr Sam McFadzean, University of Glasgow
Dr McFadzean moved to the University of Glasgow School of Physics and Astronomy in 1998 and since then has been indispensable to all those working in the department. After juggling his role with studying part time for his PhD, Dr McFadzean’s role has grown significantly down to the trust and reliability he demonstrates in all of his work.
As well as being responsible for the installation and upkeep of five major systems in the department, undertaking substantial managerial duties and the majority of the industrial contract work he is also advising and managing the IT infrastructure.
Dr McFadzean co-ordinated the technical aspects of the installation of the KNC’s most recent electron microscope and has been at the forefront of the customisation of the KNC’s instruments. Most notably, he was integral to the development of a fast electrostatic shutter that has subsequently been incorporated into every high-performance Electron Energy Loss Spectrometer sold by Gatan worldwide, and he has customised the hardware used for differential phase contrast electron microscopy leading to work was recently published with Dr McFadzean as a co-author.
Alan Agar Medal for Electron Microscopy
The aim of the award is to celebrate and mark outstanding scientific achievements applying electron microscopy in the field of physical or life sciences
2017 Winner - Professor Angus Kirkland, University of Oxford
Professor Kirkland is known for being an electron microscopist with an incredibly wide-ranging understanding and knowledge of the field. Some of his most high-profile research has been in exit-wave reconstruction. His arguably most notable work is the development of super-resolved exit-wave reconstruction methods through which, using an aberration-corrected instrument, he demonstrated a remarkable improvement in resolution to 78 picometres at 200 kV, more than 40% better than the axial limit. As published in Science, Prof Kirkland characterised of individual 2 x 2 and 3 x 3 atom nanocrystals encapsulated in a single walled carbon nanotube solved using exit-wave reconstruction to locate single I and K atoms.
Prof Kirkland was the first to clearly develop a comprehensive understanding of signal and noise transfer and the effects of this on the performance of electron image detectors.
His innovative work on detector characterisation showed that the power spectrum of an evenly illuminated white-noise image is in general not equal to the modulation transfer function (MTF) and that the conventional techniques to measure the MTF give over-optimistic estimations of the MTF. Professor Kirkland has shown that he is able to fully appreciate, identify, contribute and disseminate entirely new developments across the broad field of electron microscopy to both the European and international community.
Medal for Light Microscopy
The aim of the award is to celebrate and mark outstanding scientific achievements applying or developing new forms of light microscopy
2017 Winner - Dr Jan Huisken, Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics
Dr Huisken is an accomplished biophysical scientist who has contributed novel imaging tools that have enabled new and powerful observations of developmental and physiological processes.
Along with his co-workers, Dr Huisken introduced light sheet microscopy (or selective plane illumination microscopy) to the field of biological imaging in 2004. Since then, SPIM has replaced confocal and two-photon microscopy in many applications, and revolutionized in vivo whole embryo imaging.
Dr Huisken has pioneered sample preparation for long time lapse experiments and has expanded SPIM in a number of directions for a number of different applications, including a high-speed instrument for cardiac imaging. He has also exploited the bright-field contrast of unstained specimens to obtain in vivo tomographic reconstructions of the 3D anatomy of zebrafish. Unlike most microscopy laboratories, each microscope that Dr Huisken builds is specifically designed to address a particular biological question that requires cutting-edge observations not possible on a commercial microscope.
Medal for Flow Cytometry
The aim of the award is to celebrate and mark outstanding scientific achievements to scientists applying flow cytometry in the field of immunology or cell biology.
2016 Winner - Dr Karen Hogg, University of York
Dr Hogg is an experimental officer in the University of York’s Department of Biology’s Imaging and Cytometry Technology Facility. Over the last five years has provided expert scientific service within the laboratory and has taken a lead role in the operation and method development of MoFlo Astrios Cell Sorter and Flow Analysers.
Dr Hogg is seen as a research and information resource both within and external to the Department of Biology and provides appropriate guidance, training and advice to users. She collaborates with academic and research staff on innovative techniques and applications, delivers lectures to the MSc students and tutors for internal and external practical courses.
Medal for Life Sciences
The aim of the award is to celebrate and mark outstanding scientific achievements applying microscopy in the field of cell biology.
2015 Winner - Dr John Briggs, European Molecular Biology Laboratory
Dr Briggs is an excellent ambassador for the power of microscopy in modern life sciences research, with his work spanning both fields of virus particle structure and vesicle trafficking. He has made significant technical developments which have facilitated techniques such as time resolved electron tomography of clathrin coated vesicle formation, this along with other work of Dr Briggs have led to significant changes in the understanding of these pathways.
Dr Briggs has capitalized on his position as a group leader at the EMBL in Heidelberg to produce work of the highest quality. His contributions have been highly significant in both virology and membrane trafficking, giving new insight through quite exceptional high resolution imaging.
Dr Briggs continues to work at the forefront of his field and is held in high regard by many of his peers and international leaders in these fields.
Medal for Innovation in Applied Microscopy for Materials Science
The aim of the award is to celebrate and mark outstanding scientific achievements in applying microscopy in the field of materials science.
2017 Winner - Dr Sarah Haigh, University of Manchester
Dr Haigh has made ground-breaking contributions to the development of techniques for the study of two-dimensional materials and nanomaterials by scanning transmission electron microscopy. Dr Haigh performed the first atomic-scale cross-sectional imaging of 2D heterostructures, demonstrating that interfaces could be made atomically sharp. This insight helped improve the electronic mobility in graphene sheets and provided motivation for producing more complex stacks, establishing the rapidly growing field of van der Waals heterostructure devices. More recently, this approach has been applied to the imaging of microfluidic channels. She was also able to grant a deeper understanding of the irradiation damage threshold in nuclear reactor components using in-situ observations of ion-induced defect formation in nuclear graphite and graphene. Dr Haigh is also passionate about the development of fundamental microscopy techniques, being a pioneer of energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) STEM tomography. Among other key progressions, she has developed a new technique for accurately analysing the composition of gamma prime precipitates in a nickel superalloy, enabling a deeper understanding of precipitate coarsening effects.
Medal for Scanning Probe Microscopy
This award celebrates outstanding progress made in the field of scanning probe microscopy (SPM)
2017 Winner - Dr Bart Hoogenboom, University College London
Since being a PhD student, Dr Hoogenboom has made important contributions to the development and application of scanning probe microscopy to a wide range of scientific areas. Since establishing his research group in 2007, Dr Hoogenboom has made a number of achievements in the life sciences including visualisation of the DNA double helix which can help make important breakthroughs in gene expression and regulation. His group developed new AFM methodology and data analysis to probe inside the channel of nuclear pore complexes, offering great nanotechnological, physical and biological relevance. His group have also started a programme on real-time imaging of membrane degradation by antimicrobial peptides and pore forming proteins, resulting in, amongst other discoveries, the most complete view to date of membrane pore formation by a family of bacterial toxins that play a role in diseases such as bacterial pneumonia, meningitis and septicaemia. As well as his scientific accomplishments, Dr Hoogenboom played a pivotal role in setting up the London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN) atomic force microscopy facilities, enabling the LCN to boast world leading AFM capabilities, benefiting a wide community at both UCL and Imperial College. Dr Hoogenboom has transformed the training and use of these facilities, which has been key in promoting the use of scanning probe microscopy to a huge number of people, not just microscopists but the general public as well.