The awards were given annually to up to four individuals who have performed outstanding public service in support of science.
The Annie Jump Cannon Award is for outstanding research and promise for future research by a postdoctoral woman researcher.
The AAS Education Prize is to recognize outstanding contributions to the education of the public, students and/or the next generation of professional astronomers.
The Van Biesbroeck Prize is normally awarded every two years and honors a living individual for long-term extraordinary or unselfish service to astronomy, often beyond the requirements of his or her paid position.
The Heineman Prize for Astrophysics is awarded jointly by the American Institute of Physics and the American Astronomical Society to recognize outstanding work in the field of astrophysics.
The AAS's Joseph Weber Award for Astronomical Instrumentation is to be awarded to an individual, of any nationality, for the design, invention or significant improvement of instrumentation (not software) leading to advances in astronomy.
The Warner Prize is normally awarded annually for a significant contribution to observational or theoretical astronomy during the five years preceding the award. It is given to an astronomer who has not attained 36 years of age in the year designated for the award or must be within eight years of receipt of their Ph.D. degree.
The Pierce Prize is normally awarded annually for outstanding achievement, over the past five years, in observational astronomical research based on measurements of radiation from an astronomical object. It is given to an astronomer who has not attained 36 years of age in the year designated for the award.
The AAS administers a National Science Foundation grant that provides funding for airline travel to international science meetings. This funding is available only to individuals at US institutions.