Oct. 9, 2019

Three scientists, James Peebles, Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz have won the Nobel Prize 2019 for Physics for their contribution to the understanding of the evolution of the universe and earth's place in the cosmos.

Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB): 

  • Canadian-American cosmologist James Peebles, 84, won one-half of the Prize for his theoretical work helping us understand how the universe evolved after the Big Bang.

  • His work is focused largely on Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation, which is electromagnetic radiation left over from the early universe once it had cooled sufficiently following the Big Bang.


  • The other half went to Swiss astronomers Michel Mayor, 77, and Didier Queloz, 53, for their discovery of an exoplanet that challenged preconceived ideas about planets.

  • Using a spectrograph, ELODIE, they predicted the planet by observing the “Doppler effect” — when the star wobbles as an effect of a planet’s gravity on its observed light.

  • Today, exoplanets are being discovered very frequently — over 4,000 are known — which is remarkable progress from three decades ago, when not even one exoplanet was known.