The world has lost one of its greatest minds today as theoretical physicist Dr. Stephen Hawking passed away at the age of 76 in Cambridge.
His achievements in the realm of physics are countless, chief among them discovering that black holes, previously thought to only suck in energy and matter, actually emitted a form of radiation. That radiation is now called Hawking Radiation. He also took part in mathematically incorporating Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity with the field of quantum physics.
He also wrote and published A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes in 1988. It has since become one of the best selling science books of all time.
Dr. Stephen Hawking was born in Oxford, England on January 8th, 1942. Dr. Hawking was diagnosed with motor neuron disease, or ALS, at the age of 21 in 1963. He was given two years to live.
He attended both the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge and taught mathematics at the latter.
He was also accepted into the Royal Society in 1974 at 32, a prestigious honor previously given to the likes of Sir Isaac Newton.
The Oscar-nominated biopic The Theory of Everything was released in 2014 and was based around the life of Dr. Stephen Hawking. He was portrayed by Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar for the role.
Lucy, Robert, and Tim, Dr. Hawking’s children, issued a statement to the Guardian in the early hours of Wednesday morning on the passing of their father,
“We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today. He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years. His courage and persistence with his brilliance and humour inspired people across the world. He once said, ‘It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.’ We will miss him forever.”
In addition to his children, Dr. Stephen Hawking is survived by three grandchildren.