According to a report by the Sunday Times, the world-renowned astrophysicists’ co-authored a mathematical study in which he and his colleagues sought to prove the multiverse theory, and how different universes exist out there.
In addition, he also predicted how the universe we currently live in would eventually fade to darkness as stars throughout the cosmos run out of energy.
His last scientific paper—titled ‘A Smooth Exit from Eternal Inflation’—is currently being reviewed by a leading scientific journal, and is expected to be accepted for publication shortly.
A Smooth Exit from Eternal Inflation collects concepts from his theory of the lack of limits, which states that the universe expanded from a small point after the Big Bang.
As explained by the Sunday Times, this new proposal suggests that this great explosion was only one of an infinite number of explosions that occurred, each of which created its own universe.
In this context, Thomas Hertog, who collaborated with Hawking, explained that the work makes the multiverse easier to understand, by making it “a verifiable scientific framework.”
However, upon closer inspection, and as explained by follow-up articles published by Gizmodo and the Register, the study, which is yet to be peer-reviewed actually leans away from the multiverse theory, as the two scientists concluded; “we conjecture that the exit from eternal inflation does not produce an infinite fractal-like multiverse, but is finite and reasonably smooth”.
However, in the study, research shows that, if the correct mathematical tools are used, a space probe capable of discovering its existence could be sent. These mathematical tools are explored in the new study waiting to be peer-reviewed.
If this proposal of the British astrophysicist had succeeded while Hawking was still alive, Hertog assured that it would have allowed him to obtain the Nobel prize that “he had wanted for so long.”
“This was Stephen: to boldly go where Star Trek fears to tread,” said Hertog, professor of theoretical physics at KU Leuven University in Belgium.
“He has often been nominated for the Nobel and should have won it. Now he never can.”
However, this will not happen since the recognition is not delivered posthumously.
Meanwhile, the latest theory developed by the scientist is still being analyzed by specialists of the US scientific journal Physical Review Letters, who must give their approval before it is published.
A number of scientists around the world have said how Professor Hawking’s work may represent the breakthrough that cosmology needs, as it’s the first theory that may be verifiable through experiments.