Death of a genius: Professor Stephen Hawking dies aged 76

Death of a genius: Professor Stephen Hawking dies aged 76

The story of his life was first adapted as a BBC feature-length drama in 2004, where Benedict Cumberbatch stars as a young Hawking working on his steady-state theory at Cambridge and the immediate aftermath of his diagnosis with ALS, a motor neurone disease.

There was also his income as Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge University, where according to the Times Higher Education professors earn about £140,000.

"Saddened to learn of the passing of Stephen Hawking", Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said in a tweet.

The contributions of Hawking to our understanding of the universe are very significant.

He's well known for his incredible scientific breakthroughs with Roger Penrose, having studied black holes and relativity, attempting to finally solve the mystery surrounding how the universe began, and was awarded the CBE in 1982.

"Professor Stephen Hawking was a brilliant and extraordinary mind - one of the great scientists of his generation".

Hawking was also someone with a cheeky sense of humour and appeared on television shows such as The Simpsons, Futurama and Big Bang Theory.

A previous holder of the prestigious post was the 17th-century British scientist Sir Isaac Newton.

1988 - Publishes "A Brief History of Time", a book on cosmology aimed at the general public that becomes an instant bestseller.

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Stephen Hawking is an advocate of searching for other habitable planets in order to survive the human race and in 2007 he took a zero-gravity flight to experience the weightlessness.

"I believe the simplest explanation is, there is no God".

In 1997, Stephen Hawking lost a bet to American Theoretical Physicist about the concept of Black Holes which stated that nothing can escape from a black hole which was in violation of the fundamentals of quantum mechanics.

Stephen has three children and three grandchildren.

His most famous book "A Brief History of Time", was created to be read by ordinary people and not just scientists.

In September 2016, Hawking joined 375 "concerned" scientists in penning an open letter criticizing then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, citing the threat of climate change and blasting his push for the U.S. to leave the Paris accord.

His rise to fame and relationship with his first wife, Jane, was dramatised in the 2014 film, The Theory Of Everything, in which Eddie Redmayne put in an Oscar-winning performance as the physicist battling with a devastating illness.

Hawking got married twice, had three children, then lived to meet his three grandchildren, even as ALS slowly gnawed away at his muscle function. The couple divorced in 1991.

Prof Stephen Hawking at SEA LIFE Hunstanton in 2017 with herpetologist Ally Sharp. "He is a demagogue who seems to appeal to the lowest common denominator", Hawking said.

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