dandorfman (dandorfman) wrote,

Доклад Юли о Стивене Хокинге

Молодой Стивен Хокинг. Свадебная фотография.

Самый интересным докладом на прошедшем заседании клуба был доклад Юли Сигаловской о Стивене Хокинге.
Оригинал доклада - на английском, русского текста нет. Но если кому-нибудь из моих только русскоязычных читателей эта тема покажется интересной, я переведу этот текст на русский.

Text for Stephen Hawking presentation (partial)

Some websites:









Early Years

Stephen William Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 in Oxford, England, in the middle of World War II. After his birth in the relative safety of Oxford, the family moved back to London, where his father headed the division of parasitology at the National Institute for Medical Research, despite the continued risk of bombing from the German air forces. In 1950, Hawking moved with his family to St. Albans, where he attended St. Albans High School for Girls from 1950 to 1953 (boys could attend until the age of 10), and from the age of 11, he attended St. Albans School, where he was a good, but not an exceptional, student.

In 1959, he won a scholarship to University College, Oxford, his father's old college, where he studied physics under Robert Berman (mainly because his own preference, mathematics, was not offered there), where he pursued his particular interests in thermodynamics, relativity, and quantum mechanics. Despite his sometimes lax study habits and his boredom with university life, he graduated in 1962 with a First Class BA degree.

After graduating from Oxford, he spent a short time studying sunspots at Oxford University’s observatory. However, he soon realized that he was more interested in theory than in observation, and left Oxford for Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where he studied for a time under Fred Hoyle, the most distinguished English astronomer of the time.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Soon after arriving at Cambridge, at the age of 21, Hawking started to develop the first symptoms of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or “Lou Gehrig's disease”). Henry Louis Gehrig, born Heinrich Ludwig Gehrig, nicknamed "the Iron Horse", was an American baseball first baseman who played his entire professional career in Major League Baseball for the New York Yankees, from 1923 until 1939.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a group of rare neurological diseases that mainly involve the nerve cells (neurons) responsible for controlling voluntary muscle movement. Voluntary muscles produce movements like chewing, walking, and talking. The disease is progressive, meaning the symptoms get worse over time. Currently, there is no cure for ALS and no effective treatment to halt, or reverse, the progression of the disease.

ALS is a type of motor neuron disease which would eventually cost him almost all neuromuscular control. Although doctors predicted (incorrectly, as it turned out) that Hawking would not survive more than two or three years, he did gradually lose the use of his arms, legs and voice, until he was almost completely paralyzed and quadriplegic.

Who gets ALS?

In 2016 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that between 14,000 - 15,000 Americans have ALS. ALS is a common neuromuscular disease worldwide. It affects people of all races and ethnic backgrounds.

There are several potential risk factors for ALS including:
•Age. Although the disease can strike at any age, symptoms most commonly develop between the ages of 55 and 75.

•Gender. Men are slightly more likely than women to develop ALS. However, as we age the difference between men and women disappears.

•Race and ethnicity. Most likely to develop the disease are Caucasians and non-Hispanics.

The majority of ALS cases (90 percent or more) are considered sporadic. About 5 to 10 percent of all ALS cases are familial, which means that an individual inherits the disease from his or her parents.

Slides – text

He lived to 76 surviving additional 52 years.

Further career

Crucially, in 1965, he attended a lecture by the English mathematician Roger Penrose, who had recently produced a ground-breaking paper on space-time singularities (events in which the laws of physics seem to break down). Hawking became re-energized and engaged with renewed vigour in the study of theoretical astronomy and cosmology, particularly in the area of black holes and singularities. He would later collaborate with Penrose on several important papers on these subjects.

Another turning point in his life also occurred in 1965, with his marriage to a language student, Jane Wilde. With her help, and that of his doctoral tutor, Dennis Sciama, Hawking went on to complete his PhD and to become a Research Fellow and, later, a Professorial Fellow at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.

He had three children with Jane Wilde: Robert (1967), Lucy (1969) and Timothy (1979), but the couple finally separated in 1991, reportedly due to the pressures of Hawking’s fame and his increasing disability.

In 1968, he joined the staff of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, where he remained until 1973, and began to apply the laws of thermodynamics to black holes by means of very complicated mathematics.

These cutting edge achievements were made despite the increasing paralysis caused by Hawking's ALS. By 1974, he was unable to feed himself or get out of bed, and his speech became so slurred that he could only be understood by people who knew him well. In 1985, he caught pneumonia and had to have a tracheotomy, which left him unable to speak at all, although a variety of friends and well-wishers collaborated in building him a device that enabled him to write onto a computer with small movements of his body, and then to speak what he had written using a voice synthesizer.

In 1973, he left the Institute of Astronomy for the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics and, in 1979, he was appointed Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge University, a post he was to retain for 30 years until his retirement in 2009.


Hawking’s ground-breaking research resulted in considerable fame and celebrity. In 1974, at the age of 32, he was elected as one of the youngest ever Fellows of the Royal Society. He was created a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1982, and became a Companion of Honour in 1989. He has accumulated twelve honorary degrees, as well as many other awards, medals and prizes, including the Albert Einstein Award, the most prestigious in theoretical physics. He also became well-known among a wider audience, especially after his 1988 international bestselling book “A Brief History of Time”, and its follow ups “The Universe in a Nutshell” (2001) and “A Briefer History of Time” (2005).

In 1995, Hawking married his nurse, Elaine Mason, although they divorced in 2006 amid unconfirmed rumours of physical abuse, and he has since made up his differences with his first wife, Jane. In 2003, Hawking became dangerously ill with pneumonia, before confounding his doctors once again by recovering and throwing himself ever more emphatically into his work.

Hawking's views on the existence of God have been the subject of much debate, especially since his 1988 "A Brief History of Time" in which he mused that the discovery of an overarching theory of everything would allow us to "know the mind of God", which some people have interpreted as literal and some as literary. However, in his 2010 book "The Grand Design" he states unequivocally that "spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God...to set the universe going".

Hawking retired from his position as Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge in 2009, in accordance with the University's retirement policy, and accepted a Distinguished Research Chair at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Canada. In the same year, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States.

Stephen Hawking died at age 76 on March 13, 2018.

Major Accomplishments

#1 Along with Roger Penrose, he did ground-breaking work on singularities

Roger Penrose

A gravitational singularity is a one-dimensional point which contains infinite mass in an infinitely small space. In a singularity, gravity becomes infinite, space-time curves infinitely and the laws of physics as we know them cease to exist. Along with English mathematical physicist Roger Penrose, Stephan Hawking did path-breaking work on singularities which proved their existence and theorized that the universe might have begun as a singularity. Their Penrose–Hawking singularity theorems attempt to answer when gravitation produces singularities.

#2 Hawking co-discovered the four laws of black hole mechanics

With James Bardeen and Brandon Carter, Stephan Hawking discovered the four laws of black hole mechanics. These laws are physical properties that black holes are believed to satisfy and are analogous to the laws of thermodynamics. In January 1971, his essay titled “Black Holes” won the prestigious Gravity Research Foundation Award.

Simulated view of a Black Hole

#3 His most significant theory is that black holes emit the Hawking radiation

Previously physicists believed nothing could escape a black hole. In 1974, Stephan Hawking showed that black holes emit radiation, which may continue till they exhaust their energy and evaporate. Stephen’s prediction of what became known as the Hawking radiation initially created a controversy but on further research was considered an important breakthrough in theoretical physics.

Hawking Radiation explanation
#4 He contributed to the theory of cosmic inflation

Introduced by Alan Guth in 1980, cosmic inflation is a theory in physical cosmology which proposes that following the Big Bang, the universe expanded exponentially before settling down to slower expansion. It is now widely accepted. Stephen Hawking was one of the first to calculate quantum fluctuations that were created during cosmic inflation and to show how they might give rise to the spread of galaxies in the universe.

History of the Universe Diagram

#5 Along with James Hartle, he proposed an important model on universe’s initial state

Along with James Hartle, Stephen Hawking published a model known as the Hartle–Hawking state in 1983. It proposed that time didn’t exist before the Big Bang and hence the concept of the beginning of the universe is meaningless. The Hartle–Hawking state universe has no beginning as it has no initial boundaries in time or space. It remains one of themost prominent theories on the initial state of the universe.

Hawking says the universe had no clear “bang.” You can wind back the clock to the edges of those first moments of existence, but asking what came before would be like asking why you can keep walking north when you get to the North Pole. Time, as we define it, loses its meaning as the universe shrinks down.

James B. Hartle

#6 With Thomas Hertog, he proposed a theory of “top-down cosmology”

In 2006, Stephen Hawking, along with Thomas Hertog of CERN, proposed a theory of “top-down cosmology”. It proposed that the universe had not one unique initial state but consisted of a superposition of many possible initial conditions. Thus as we don’t know the initial conditions at the beginning of the universe, we can’t have a bottom-up model. This leaves the possibility of only a top-down approach as we know the final state of the universe – the one we are in now. The theory became popular as it fits in with the well-known string theory.

Films http://www.hawking.org.uk/films.html

The Theory of Everything (2014) by James Marsh.

The Theory of Everything is Stephen Hawking's multi award-winning biopic. Eddie Redmayne won an Academy Award for Best Actor as Professor Hawking, and Felicity Jones portrayed Jane Hawking. It follows the story of Stephen and Jane's life, from first meeting in Cambridge in 1964, with Stephen's subsequent academic successes and his increasing disability.

Hawking (2013) documentary by Stephen Finnigan.

​HAWKING is the extraordinary story of the planet's most famous living scientist, told for the first time in his own words and by those closest to him. Made with unique access to Professor Hawking's private life by BAFTA nominated director Stephen Finnigan, this is an intimate and moving journey into Professor Hawking's world, both past and present.

Hawking (2004) BBC drama by Philip Martin. Starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Prof. Hawking

​A BBC television film starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Professor Hawking. It follows Stephen's early life as a PhD student following his quest for the big bang theory while struggling with the onset of Motor Neurone Disease.

A Brief History of Time (1991) by Errol Morris

​The original 1991 biography of Professor Hawking, directed by Errol Morris, containing interviews with Stephen, his colleagues, friends and family.
Tags: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6

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