11 reasons to love Stephen Hawking (if you didn't already)

11 reasons to love Stephen Hawking (if you didn't already)

Stephen Hawking, arguably the world's greatest living scientist, is still expanding his own horizons as well as those of the universe - the 73-year-old is going to be at Glastonbury this year, giving a speech on the Kidz Field.

The Beckham family fanboyed and fangirled all over the professor when they met him last month, and they're far from the only ones - the author of A Brief History of Time is an all-round national treasure. In honour of his continued general amazingness we've rounded up some of Hawking's greatest achievements, in science and popular culture, in layperson's terms:

1. He used Einstein's theory of relativity to find evidence for the Big Bang

Colour-coded temperature variations on the first all-sky microwave image of the universe soon after the Big Bang, in an image captured by Nasa and Princeton University in 2003.

2. He's always had epic style

3. He figured out the behaviour of black holes, blowing previous classical and quantum physics theories out of the water

4. He's funnier than John Oliver

5. And he's not afraid to show off his musical talent, either

6. He developed a quantum theory of gravity, which gives us a new "wave function" way to see the universe outside the boundaries of time and space

7. He consoled teenage girls heartbroken over Zayn Malik leaving One Direction by reminding them it's possible that in an undiscovered parallel universe, the band is still together

8. He fulfilled every kid's dream by turning into a Transformer in a Red Nose Day sketch

9. He's been on The Simpsons, Futurama, The Big Bang Theory, Family Guy, Red Dwarf, and is the only person ever to play themselves on Star Trek

Stephen Hawking and Bill Clinton watch Hawking's Star Trek: The Next Generation cameo in 1998.

10. His research showed us how galaxies are formed, which is thanks to fluctuations in the speed at which the universe expands

The Crab Nebula, seen from NASA's Hubble Space telescope in 2005. This image shows the six-light-year-wide expanding remnant of a supernova explosion, which Native Americans and Japanese and Chinese astronomers recorded witnessing in 1054 A.D.

11. He's a musical muse: Hawking is on Pink Floyd's latest album The Endless River and he recorded a speech about power which U2 is using to close the set of their current tour

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