Saturday, January 17, 2009

Stephen William Hawking

Stephen William Hawking
Stephen William hawking was born on January 8, 1942. His parent, Frank and Isobel, lived in London but went to Oxford for his birth to avoid the London of World War II.

Both Frank and Isobel Hawking had studied at Oxford University. Frank studied medicine and became a specialist in tropical disease. Isobel became a secretary and met Frank, and they married in early days of war.

Stephen went to the private St. Albans School, beginning his studies in September 1952. He had two younger sisters, Mary and Philippa, and a brother, Edward.

Stephen soon discovered his great gift for mathematics and an intuitive capacity of good ideas, nevertheless, he did not excel as an undergraduate at Oxford University. He got scholarship to University College, which had also been his father’s college.

During his last year at Oxford, physical difficulties emerges, he did nothing about it, but when he went home for Christmas his mother had him examined in the hospital. He soon got report that he had ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis also known as motor neuron disease or Lou Gehrig’s disease.

At Cambridge Hawking was a student at Trinity Hall. Hawking’s fame began with work developed by Fred Hoyle, well known for working with Hermann Bondi and Thomas Gold on the “steady state” theory of the universe.

Hawking the Oxford undergraduate had shown little promise of becoming a great genius, but when the devastating consequences of his disease appeared in Cambridge, he began to shine with his own light, like a new star igniting into a bright nova.

Through his work on black holes Hawking is widely known. In 1971 he argued that black holes could be formed other than by a star’s gravitational collapse. They could have been produced, in the form of mini-black-holes, in the original big-bang.

These objects, if they exist, still wait discovery. Hawking went on in 1974 to describe a process by which black holes could quite unexpectedly emit radiation at a steady rate; this is known ‘Hawking radiation’.

Hawking has also considered the problem of the quantization of gravity, although he has not yet reached any generally accepted conclusions. He explained his scientific theories in a, popular book, A Brief History of Time (1987), which has been in bestseller list for nearly four years.
Stephen William Hawking

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