• Fellowships Continue Stephen Hawking’s Legacy of Scientific Engagement
    Stephen Hawking visiting the ATLAS Experiment at CERN in 2013. (Credit: Anna Pantelia/CERN)

News & Views

Fellowships Continue Stephen Hawking’s Legacy of Scientific Engagement

Mar 21 2020

Two researchers from the University of Manchester, Dr Danai Antonopoulou and Dr Stefan Schacht, who recently joined from Cornell University, are amongst the first nine recipients of the Stephen Hawking Fellowships, launched by UK Research and Innovation on March 6, in recognition of his exceptional contributions to scientific knowledge and popularisation of science.

Supported through the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), the fellows will tackle major scientific questions such as the nature of the early universe and dark matter and whether string theory really is a ‘theory of everything’, engaging with the public through stand-up comedy, art and music.

Professor Stephen Hawking’s children, Lucy, Robert and Tim Hawking, said: “We are proud to be associated with this initiative, which builds on the legacy of our father by supporting research into these areas of science.

“One of his greatest achievements was opening up even the most complex scientific breakthroughs to the wider world and we hope that these Fellows are able to continue that important mission by inspiring people from all walks of life in the wonders of science.”

Dr Schacht aims to build on last year’s observation of the unique phenomenon of matter-antimatter asymmetry in a form of particle called the D0 meson, to take us one step closer to answering our big questions about the fundamental laws of nature.

He plans to engage the wider public by establishing a programme for particle physics at the Bluedot Festival an annual music, science and art festival at the Jodrell Bank Observatory site.

Based at the Jodrell Bank Centre of Astrophysics, Dr Antonopoulou will advance our knowledge of neutron stars and their unusual physical properties, such as superfluidity and superconductivity and the nature of extremely dense matter.

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