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This award is established by the Planetary Science Institute in memory of Senior Scientist Betty Pierazzo to support and encourage graduate students to build international collaborations and relationships in planetary science.

Two awards are made each year (contingent upon there being meritorious applications). One is awarded to a graduate student working on his or her Ph.D. at an institution within the U.S. This is to support travel to a planetary science-related meeting (conferences and workshops) outside of the U.S. The second award is to a graduate student working on his or her Ph.D. at an institution outside of the U.S. This is to support travel to a planetary science-related meeting within the U.S. These include general meetings that have planetary-focused sessions such as the AGU, GSA, EGU and IAG.  All meetings must be open to general participation by the planetary community to be eligible.

The award will consist of a certificate and up to $2,000 US. The award will be presented by a PSI representative at a scientific conference or meeting.

bettyBetty Pierazzo was an expert in the area of impact modeling throughout the solar system, as well as an expert on the astrobiological and environmental effects of impacts on Earth and Mars. In addition to her research, she was passionate about education, teaching and public outreach, developing planetary-related classroom materials, professional development workshops for teachers, and teaching college-level classes herself. Betty believed in the strength of broad collaborations in all of her research and education activities. This award memorializes the scope of how she lived her life and the good she sought to bring to our profession and communities.



The subject matter of the work by the recipient of the Pierazzo International Student Travel Award may be in any area of planetary science. This includes work to inventory planetary objects in our solar system and around other stars and to improve our understanding of the processes active in and among them, their origin and evolution. This includes the history and prospects of habitable environments on or within these objects. The study of terrestrial processes and ecosystems are also included to the extent that they shed insight on such processes elsewhere in solar systems. Work on the hazards and mitigation of such hazards of solar system objects to terrestrial life, or their potential as sources of exploitable resources, is also included.


The applicant must be a graduate student at the time of the meeting at which he or she proposes to make a presentation. The applicant must attend the meeting as a condition for receiving the award. 

Help more students make great professional connections and contribute to the Betty Pierazzo Memorial Fund!


Please contact: pista_questions [at]



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