Stephen Hawking 70th Birthday

January 8, 2012 by staff 

Stephen Hawking 70th BirthdayStephen Hawking 70th Birthday, British scientist Stephen Hawking has been forced to miss a scientific debate to mark his 70th birthday but sent an upbeat message saying he was living at a “glorious time”.

As scientists and media gathered at Cambridge University on Sunday for a symposium to mark Hawking’s birthday, vice-chancellor Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewic said: “Stephen has been unwell and was only discharged from hospital on Friday.”

But in a pre-recorded message, the physicist urged participants to focus on his glittering career and the future of science rather than his struggles against illness.
“It has been a glorious time to be alive and doing research in theoretical physics,” he said.

“We must also continue to go into space for the future of humanity,” he said. “I don’t think we will survive another thousand years without escaping beyond our fragile planet.”

Hawking, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease aged 21, followed the special symposium on The State of the Universe via webcast, the vice-chancellor said.

Despite spending most of his life in a wheelchair and being able to speak only through a computer, the theoretical physicist’s quest for the secrets of the universe has made him arguably the most famous scientist in the world.

When Hawking was diagnosed with the debilitating condition aged 21, he was given only a few years to live, but has defied medical opinion by reaching his eighth decade.

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