MOSCOW, September 4 (RIA Novosti) – Two Russian-born physicists have won this year’s $500,000 Gruber Prize in Cosmology for developing a theory of the universe's earliest moments.
Vyacheslav Mukhanov, full professor of physics at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, and Alexei Starobinsky, the main research scientist at the Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics in Moscow, shared the award, which was presented Tuesday as part of the Cosmo-2013 conference at the Stephen Hawking Centre for Theoretical Cosmology in Cambridge, England.
They were named the winners of this year’s prize in July for their “formative contributions to inflationary theory, an essential component for understanding the evolution and structure of the universe,” the Gruber Foundation said in a press release.
The 2013 prize citation credits Starobinsky and Mukhanov “with a profound contribution to inflationary cosmology and the theory of the inflationary perturbations of the metric of spacetime.”
“This theory, explaining the quantum origin of the structure of our universe, is one of the most spectacular manifestations of the laws of quantum mechanics on cosmologically large scales,” the citation says.