Stephen Hawking | Biography, Facts, Theory, Books

Stephen Hawking was an English theoretical physicist, author, and cosmologist. He is known for his research in the fields of black holes and relativity. He is the best scientist of all time. He discovered many theories and gave inventions. He is the author of famous science books like 'A Brief History of Time' and is famous in the field of physics.

Stephen Hawking, Biography, Facts, Theory
  • Full Name: Stephen Hawking
  • Born: 8 January 1942, Oxford, United Kingdom
  • Died: 14 March 2018, Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Spouse: Jane Hawking (m. 1965–1995)
  • Children: Lucy Hawking, Timothy Hawking, Robert Hawking
  • Parents: Frank Hawking, Isobel Hawking

Early Life

Stephen Hawking was born on 08 January 1942, in Oxford, England. Stephen Hawking was the eldest child of Frank Hawking and Isobel Hawking. He grows up with his three siblings. Hawking was born into a family of thinkers. His mother earned her way into Oxford University in the 1930s. His father was a well-known medical researcher and was a specialist in tropical diseases.

In 1950, Hawking's father worked to manage the Division of Parasitology at the National Institute of Medical Research. All members of the Hawking family were pretty quiet and simple. The family's home in St. Albans was an uncomplicated three-story fixer-upper house, and their car was an old London taxi. He wanted his eldest child to go into medicine, but at an early age, Hawking showed a passion for science and the sky.

Education

Stephen Hawking began his schooling at the Byron House School, Highgate, London. When Hawking was eight years old, he attended St Albans High School for Girls for a few months. During his academic years, Hawking was recognized as a bright student and was not an exceptional student, and was third from the bottom. Stephen loved board games, and he along with his few close friends created new games of their own.

In October 1959, at the age of 17, Hawking began his university education at University College, Oxford. Even though he expressed a desire to study mathematics, Oxford didn't propose a degree in mathematics, that for Hawking gravitated toward physics and specifically cosmology. He didn't put much time into his studies. Hawking graduated with honors in natural science, in 1962.

After graduation, he went to attend Trinity Hall at the University of Cambridge for a Ph.D. in cosmology. After completing their Ph.D., Hawking became a member of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, In 1968. In 1973, Stephen Hawking along with G.F.E. Ellis, published his first, highly-technical book, The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time.

Books by Hawking

In his life, Hawking wrote or co-wrote a total of 15 books. A few of the most noteworthy include the universe in a nutshell In 2001, Hawking published his book 'The Universe in a nutshell. This book offers an illustrated guide to understanding cosmology's big theories.

The Grand Design

In September 2010, Hawking's book 'The Grand Design' was published. In this book, he spoke against the idea that God could have created the universe in his book The Grand Design. Hawking also said that "Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist."

Family

In 1963, at a New year party, Stephen Hawking met a young languages undergraduate, 'Jane Wilde'. Stephen and Jane Wilde married in 1965. In 1967, Jane gave birth to a son, Robert and the couple get their daughter named 'Lucy', in 1970. Their third child, Timothy, arrived in 1979. Hawking left his wife Jane for one of his nurses, Elaine Mason, in 1990, and get married to her in 1995.

In 2003, some nurses of Hawking reported their suspicions to police with the cause that Elain was abusing her husband, physically. Hawking denied the allegations, and the investigation was called off. Hawking and Elaine filed for divorce, in 2006. After his divorce from Elaine, Hawking reportedly grew closer to his family and reconciled with Jane. Also, he published five science-themed novels for children with his daughter, Lucy.

Disease

Hawking first began to notice problems with his physical health while he was at Oxford. In 1963, at the age of 21, Hawking was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease). When his father took notice of his condition, he took Hawking to see a doctor. For the next two weeks, Stephen made his home at a medical clinic, where he underwent a series of tests. Hawking said that "Before my condition was diagnosed, I had been very bored with life," he said. "There had not seemed to be anything worth doing".

When he realized that he might not even live long enough to earn his Ph.D., he poured himself into his work and research. He was forced to use a wheelchair by 1969. As physical control over his body diminished, the effects of his disease started to slow down. In the middle 1970s, Hawking's family had taken in one of Hawking's graduate students to help manage his work. Stephen can only get up and feed himself but other work required assistance.

In 1985 due to a tracheotomy, he lost his voice. After losing his voice the physicist needed 24-hour care. This incident attracted a Californian computer developer. He had developed a speaking program that could be directed by eye or head movement. This invention allowed Hawking to select words on a computer screen that were then passed through a speech synthesizer.

Hawking's discoveries

Hawking became a celebrity within the scientific World, In 1974 when he showed that black holes aren't the information vacuums that scientists had thought they were. He demonstrated that matter, in the form of radiation, can escape the gravitational force of a collapsed star (black hole).

Later on Hawking along with a young cosmologist, Roger Penrose, worked together to expand upon Penrose’s earlier work, and had earlier discovered groundbreaking findings about the fate of stars and the creation of black holes. This research on black holes by Hawking marked him with awards, notoriety, and distinguished titles that reshaped the way the world thinks about black holes and the universe.

When Hawking proposed his radiation, the announcement gave a shock wave to the scientific world. In 1974, Hawking was named a fellow of the Royal Society, at the age of 32. He earned the prestigious Albert Einstein Award along with other awards. Hawking appeared at a conference in Sweden, in August 2015, to discuss new theories about black holes and the vexing "information paradox." This conference was on the issue of what becomes of an object that enters a black hole.

In this conference, Hawking proposed that information about the physical state of the object is stored in 2D form within an outer boundary known as the "event horizon." Noting that black holes "are not the eternal prisons they were once thought.

Space Travel

At the age of 65, Hawking made an important step toward space travel, in 2007. He visited the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, to experience an environment without gravity. He was freed from his wheelchair to experience bursts of weightlessness, Over the course of two hours over the Atlantic, and was a passenger on a modified Boeing 727. His Pictures of the freely floating physicist splashed across newspapers.

After experiencing zero gravity he said- The zero-G part was wonderful, and the high-G part was no problem. I could have gone on and on. Space, here I come".

Death

Hawking was suffering from ALS disease and he died on 14 March 2018, A family spokesman confirmed that the iconic scientist died at his home in Cambridge, England. later on, in March 2018, it was announced that Hawking's ashes would be interred at Westminster Abbey in London, alongside other scientific luminaries like Isaac Newton.