One of the few scientists in the modern world who have gained a celebrity-like recognition and fan-following is physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking. His death on March 14, 2018 sent waves of sadness throughout the scientific community as well as non-scientific folks who were his admirers. Despite fighting a battle with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), his desire to explore the universe spread his scientific knowledge to the rest of the world. From the formation of the universe to its possible end, Hawking made calculated predictions about it all.
Remembering him on his death anniversary, here are a few ground-breaking discoveries that can be attributed to the phenomenal scientist and inspiring human being.
Proving Black Holes
He was the first person to ever provide mathematical proof for the existence of black holes. They had been a theory before Hawking’s validation.
The Hawking Radiation
His prediction that black holes emit radiation was found true and named after him. Thanks to these predictions, we now know black holes can vary in size in accordance to the radiation of energy.
Hawking Area Theorem
This was a team effort with Brandon Carter and James Bardeen. Together, they discovered the laws of the mechanics of black holes. The first of these was named after Hawking, which says the black hole never gets smaller in terms of total surface area.
Formation of black holes
Apart from discovering their existence, Hawking also postulated how they were formed. As a star dies, its entire mass collapses into infinite density at a single point (or singularity) which in turn forms a black hole.
The Theory of Time
His theories regarding time are quite interesting. One of the many time-related theories he offered was that before the Big Bang explosion (widely accepted as the event leading to the birth of our current universe) time was basically non-existent. This means questions regarding “what existed or happen before” this event are essentially meaningless.