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Why Stephen Hawking never won the Nobel Prize

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NEW DELHI: British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking never won a Nobel Prize for his remarkable work, no, not even for his discovery that ‘Black Holes can die’.

Why was this?

Because even though his ‘Black Holes are mortal’ theory is now firmly accepted in theoretical physics, there was no way to verify it, wrote Timothy Ferris, author of ‘The Science of Liberty’, in National Geographic magazine.

“The problem was that there was no way to verify the idea. Black holes are too long-lived to be observed today in their death throes,” said Ferris.

The author added that Hawking may have won the prize if the phenomenon of Black Holes ‘dying’ could be observed.

“But that won’t happen for billions of years, not until the first star-size black holes start exploding,” explained Ferris.

A similar reason was why Peter Higgs, who postulated Higgs Boson in 1964, didn’t get the vaunted Nobel for the longest time. He eventually won it in 2013 – jointly with François Englert – a year after a European research organisation CERN said they had each observed a new particle consistent with Higgs Boson.

Updated: March 14, 2018 — 4:59 am

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