Stephen Hawking Facts



  • Stephen Hawking is one of the most famous living scientists. His computer-simulated voice is familiar on many television science programmes.
  • Stephen Hawking (b.1942) is a British physicist who is famous for his ideas on space and time.
  • Hawking was born in Oxford, England and studied at Cambridge University, where he is now a professor.
  • Hawking suffers from the paralyzing nerve disease called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. He cannot move any more than a few hand and face muscles, but he gets around very well in an electric wheelchair.
  • Hawking cannot speak, but he communicates effectively with a computer-simulated voice.
  • Hawking’s book A Brief History of Time (1988) outlines his ideas on space, time and the history of the Universe since the Big Bang. It was one of the best-selling science books of the 20th century.
  • Einstein thought of and Hawking developed the idea of black holes. They are collapsed objects, such as stars, that have become invisible.
  • Hawking’s contributions to the study of gravity are considered to be the most important since Einstein’s.
  • More than anyone else, Hawking has developed the idea of black holes — points in space where gravity becomes so extreme that it even sucks in light.
  • Hawking developed the idea of a singularity, which is an incredibly small point in a black hole where all physical laws break down.
  • Hawking’s work provides a strong theoretical base for the idea that the Universe began with a Big Bang, starting with a singularity and exploding outwards.
  • Hawking is trying to find a quantum theory of gravity to link in with the three other basic forces (electromagnetism and nuclear forces). The Big Bang theory assumes the Universe started with a singularity, a point of infinite mass.