Champagne supernovae: astronomers claim Nobel Prize

October 4, 2011

The Nobel Prize in physics has been awarded to three astronomers for their discovery of the accelerating expansion of the universe.

Half of the prize money will go to Saul Perlmutter, a professor of astrophysics at the University of California Berkeley.

The other half will go to Brian Schmidt, a distinguished professor at the Australian National University and Adam Riess, professor of astronomy and physics at Johns Hopkins University and a senior member of the science staff at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore.

All three are credited for their discovery in the late 1990s of the accelerating expansion of the universe through their observations of distant supernovae. The acceleration is believed to be caused by dark energy.

All three winners were tipped for prizes by Thomson Reuters analyst David Pendlebury, based on his scrutiny of highly cited papers.

paul.jump@tsleducation.com

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