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Nobel Prize Winner Lectures at University of Stockholm
Nobel recipient John Mather autographs posters for students at the University of Stockholm, Sweden. Dr. John C. Mather, co-winner of the 2006 Nobel Prize for physics, got the rock star treatment today as students waited in line for his autograph at the University of Stockholm in Sweden. Dr. Mather lectured today at the university of as part of the events leading up to the presentation of the Nobel Prize.

Image left: Dr. John C. Mather autographs poster for students at the University of Stockholm, Sweden. Click image to enlarge Credit: NASA/Ed Goldstein.

Dr. Mather and Dr. George F. Smoot shared the prize for their collaborative work on understanding the Big Bang. Their work was based on data from NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE), which studied the pattern of radiation from the first few instants after the universe was formed.

Dr. Mather talks to students at the University of Stockholm, Sweden.Image right: Dr. Mather talks with students as the University of Stockholm.Click image to enlargeCredit: NASA/Ed Goldstein.

Until fairly recently very little was known about the origin of the universe. The Big Bang Theory stated in the simplest of terms that, long ago, something happened and about a billion years later stars and galaxies appeared. Dr. Mather helped fill in the pieces with his work on COBE.

In 1992, the COBE team announced that they had mapped the primordial hot and cold spots in the cosmic microwave background radiation. These spots are related to the gravitational field in the early universe, only instants after the Big Bang, and are the seeds for the giant clusters of galaxies that stretch hundreds of millions of light years across the universe.

+ Read More About Dr. Mather and his research

Photo Credit: NASA