Hawking after the age of 70: in any case, we should “watch out for the sky”

Since his 70th birthday, Hawking’s focus of attention has changed significantly, including the goals that he believes are indispensable for human survival.

However, the science he devoted himself to also focused more on the frontier than ever before – what Wheeler called “the blazing barrier of the world”.

Hawking was a renowned speaker of the Ritz lecture. This annual live broadcast lecture is designed to celebrate the tradition of public education broadcasting founded by John Ritz, the BBC’s first director general, Lord Ritz.


Hawking traces back the history of black hole research and his own participation. He pointed out that the solution to the paradox of information loss may be based on Feynman’s cosmology.

Feynman believes that the universe does not have a single history, but many different possible histories.

Hawking then went on to introduce a new interpretation – Super translation, which was the argument that he, Perry and stromminger made just three weeks ago.

He advised the audience to “watch the sky”.


The media are more eager to use his conjecture as material to report that a large enough rotating black hole may form a one-way pipe to another universe.

Hawking emphasized one-way and told the audience that even if he loved the idea of space flight, he would not try it.

In both lectures, Hawking was more tolerant of God than before.


He mentioned Laplace’s famous response to Napoleon’s query and explained how to integrate God into Laplace’s scientific view – “I never needed that hypothesis.”.

Then he commented, “I don’t think Laplace is advocating that God doesn’t exist. He just thinks that he doesn’t interfere in violating the laws of science. That must be the position of all scientists. “

A little more than a week later, the news reported a long-awaited breakthrough and found that it was just the right time to perfectly follow Hawking’s black hole lecture.

The beginning of the story is quite appropriate. It happened a long time ago in a galaxy far away.


The two black holes collide with each other at nearly half the speed of light to form a single black hole, which also converts the combined mass into energy and emits bursts of gravitational waves.

These fluctuations spread over 1.3 billion years in space and reached LIGO at 5:51 a.m. in the eastern time zone of North America on September 14, 2015.

After rigorous analysis, five months later, David Leitz, executive director of LIGO laboratory, revealed at a press conference in Washington, D.C


“Ladies and gentlemen, we have detected gravity waves. We did it! “

The discovery is the first direct evidence of the existence of black holes. Theoretical verification and indirect observation evidence have existed for a long time, but this is a “murder weapon”!

LIGO contains two detectors, located in Washington state and Louisiana.

It is expected that when the gravity wave sweeps the earth, the two detectors will detect it almost at the same time, but they are not completely synchronized.


During the period from the launch of LIGO in 2002 to the shutdown of LIGO in 2010, there was no such phenomenon at all.

The upgrade paid off almost immediately. Gravity wave 150914 arrived at the Louisiana detector. One hundredth of a second later, the wave appeared in Washington state. The south to North sequence shows that the source of the wave is in the sky of the earth’s southern hemisphere.

Hawking warmly congratulated his old friend Thorne and the LIGO team, and stressed the significance of this discovery for the future of astronomy.


Before that, our exploration of the universe only used light, radio waves and other electromagnetic radiation. Gravity waves provide a new way to look at the universe.

Seth Fletcher of Scientific American explains in detail:

Using radio waves to probe the sky led to the discovery of radio galaxies, quasars and astrophysical black holes.

The detection of gravitational waves also has a new function, because it will mark the beginning of an era. From then on, scientists can use gravitational waves like electromagnetic radiation as a tool to observe the universe.


Xiaobian believes that science communicators let everyone participate in science, from schoolchildren to politicians, and even retirees, so as to put science at the core of daily life.

Bring science to the people, and bring the people into science. It’s important to me, to you and to the world.

Since Hawking’s 70th birthday, his focus of attention has changed significantly in the next few years, including some goals that he believes are indispensable for the survival of mankind.


However, the science he devoted himself to also focused more on the frontier part, which Wheeler called “the blazing barrier of the world”.

Hawking paid homage to his teacher Tata and said at the beginning: “everything begins with the seed of love. Love of music, love of history For me, it’s the love of science. “

In any case, it’s “watch the sky!”

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