Stephen Hawking Archives, office acquired for the British public –

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Stephen Hawking Archives, office acquired for the British public – fr


LONDON – The Science Museum in London and the University of Cambridge Library said on Wednesday it had acquired a large collection of objects belonging to the late physicist Stephen Hawking, from his custom wheelchairs to landmark articles on theoretical physics and his scripts since appearing on “The Simpsons”.

The entire contents of Hawking’s Cambridge office – including his communications equipment, memorabilia, bets on science debates and office furniture – will be kept as part of the collection owned by the Science Museum Group.

Hawking held the office of the university’s department of applied mathematics and theoretical physics from 2002 until shortly before his death in 2018.

The highlights will be on display at the Museum of London early next year. Museum officials are also hoping to set up a traveling exhibit in the UK before setting up a permanent exhibit in London.

Meanwhile, his extensive archive of scientific and personal documents, including a first draft of his bestseller A Brief History of Time and his correspondence with leading scientists, will remain in the University of Cambridge Library. .

The institution’s acceptance of Hawking’s records and office meant that his estate settled 4.2 million pounds ($ 5.9 million) in inheritance tax.

This was done thanks to a plan by the British government that allows those with such tax bills to pay by transferring important cultural, scientific or historical objects to the nation. Objects accepted under the plan are allocated to public collections and available to all.

Hawking studied for his doctorate at Cambridge and later became the university’s Lucasian professor of mathematics, the same post Isaac Newton held from 1669 to 1702.

Cambridge’s acquisition of the 10,000-page archives means that Hawking’s papers will join those of Newton and Charles Darwin in the University Library, where they will soon be available to the public.

“The archives allow us to enter Stephen’s mind and travel with him through the cosmos to, as he put it, ‘better understand our place in the universe,’ said Jessica Gardner, librarian of the ‘university.

“This vast archive provides extraordinary insight into the evolution of Stephen’s scientific life, from childhood to research student, from disability activist to world-renowned revolutionary scientist,” she added.

Diagnosed with motor neuron disease at age 22 and barely a few years to live, Hawking survived for decades, dying in 2018 at age 76. made him a celebrity beyond college reservations. Hollywood celebrated her life in the 2014 biopic “The Theory of Everything”.

Hawking’s children, Lucy, Tim and Robert, said they were happy their father’s work was being preserved for the public for generations to come.

“My father would be so happy and I think maybe at the same time, just a little overwhelmed that he was going to be a part of… the history of science, that he was going to be alongside the great scientists, the people of whom he really admired the work, ”said Lucy Hawking.

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