Sociedad Mexicana de Astrobiología (SOMA)January 5, 2016
Dr. Roberto Vázquez Meza, President
Instituto de Astronomía, UNAM
Ensenada, Baja California, México
Dr. Guadalupe Cordero Tercero, Vice President
Instituto de Geofísica, UNAM
Ciudad Universitaria, DF, México
About the Mexican Society of Astrobiology
SOMA (Mexican Society of Astrobiology) is a non-profit, self-sustained organization consisting of a multidisciplinary group of academics and students interested in promoting the knowledge and progress of Astrobiology in Mexico. Its headquarters are located at the Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares (Institute of Nuclear Sciences – ICN) at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) in Mexico City.
The society was originally named Sociedad Mexicana de Ciencias de la Vida en el Espacio (Mexican Society of the Sciences of Life in Space) upon its creation in 2000. Its founders were Mexican researchers and people dedicated to the popularization of science. In 2002, the Society adopted its current name, Sociedad Mexicana de Astrobiología (SOMA).
The current director of SOMA is Dr. Antígona Segura, an astronomer dedicated to the study of exoplanets and biosignatures. The vice president of the Society is Dr. Sandra I. Ramírez-Jiménez, a chemist who is an expert in the study of planetary atmospheres and extremophiles.
While SOMA members are mostly researchers, undergraduate students and graduate students, any person interested in the scientific study of, or the popularization of research related to, the study of life as a planetary phenomenon is welcomed to join the Society. SOMA currently has approximately 70 members.
The main objectives of SOMA are:
- Integrating scientists, professionals and students interested in Astrobiology to increase our understanding of this developing field in Mexico.
- Promoting national and international collaboration among organizations dedicated to Astrobiology and related fields.
- Motivating young students to initiate a scientific career in topics related to Astrobiology.
- Popularizing the understanding and awareness of Astrobiology by giving support to media (TV, radio, press and electronic publications).
Some of the main SOMA activities include:
- Organization and sponsoring of the Biannual Meeting of the Mexican Society of Astrobiology.
- Organization of and participation in public lectures, seminars, and round tables on current topics related to Astrobiology.
- Organization of Astrobiology Workshops for SOMA members and non-members, undergraduate and graduate students, and high school teachers.
- Organization of the Biannual Mexican School of Astrobiology for undergraduate and graduate students.
- Collaborations to create curricula for Astrobiology courses at undergraduate and graduate levels.
- Publication of the bimonthly Bulletin of the Society, which contains summaries of the high-impact news on Astrobiology research, announcements for scientific meetings and internal news of the Society. The SOMA bulletin is distributed via e-mail to Society members and international fellows.
- Providing information to, and participate in talks and interviews for, various media (TV, radio, press and electronic publications) on Astrobiology related news.
- Management of public Websites dedicated to Astrobiology.
- Centro de Astrobiología (CAB)
- Australian Centre for Astrobiology (ACA) AFFILIATE PARTNERS
- Astrobiology Society of Britain (ASB)
- Canadian Astrobiology Network (CAN)
- European Exo/Astrobiology Network Association (EANA)
- Helmholtz Alliance: Planetary Evolution and Life
- Instituto de Astrobiología Colombia (IAC)
- Japan AstroBiology Consortium (JABC)
- Nordic Network of Astrobiology
- Russian Astrobiology Center (RAC)
- Société Française d’Exobiologie (SFE)
- Sociedad Mexicana de Astrobiología (SOMA)
- UK Centre for Astrobiology
- University of São Paulo (USP) Research Unit in Astrobiology (NAP-Astrobio)