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Friday, April 18, 2014

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Nobel laureate Mather to speak, April 19

Nobel laureate John Mather will deliver a lecture titled "From the Big Bang to the Nobel Prize" at 4:45 p.m. Thursday, April 19, in A-02 McDonnell Hall.

In a talk intended for a lay audience, Mather will tell the story of how the universe began, how it could have produced an Earth where sentient beings can live and how those beings are discovering their history through spaceborne instruments. A project scientist for NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite and senior project scientist for the planned James Webb Space Telescope, Mather will offer details on how COBE's findings support the Big Bang theory and the opportunities for future discovery the Webb telescope will provide.

Mather is a senior astrophysicist in the Observational Cosmology Laboratory at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. His research centers on infrared astronomy and cosmology. He shared the 2006 Nobel Prize in physics with George Smoot for their work on COBE.

Mather's address is the fifth annual Raymond and Beverly Sackler Lecture in Astrophysics and is sponsored by the Department of Physics. It will be preceded by tea at 4 p.m. in 218 Jadwin Hall.

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