Nobel Week Dialogue

Didier Queloz

Didier Queloz received the Nobel Prize for his discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a star outside our solar system. His research has continued to focus on exoplanet systems, and more recently on the detection of Earth-like planets and universal life.

Didier Queloz sparked the “exoplanet revolution” in astrophysics. In 1995, together with his PhD supervisor Michel Mayor, he announced the first discovery of a giant planet orbiting a star outside our solar system. This seminal discovery spawned a revolution in astronomy and kickstarted the field of exoplanet research.  

Over the following 25 years, Queloz’s scientific contributions have essentially been to make progress in the detection and measurement of exoplanet systems, with the goal of better understanding their physical structure, formation and evolution by comparison with our solar system. More recently, he has directed his activity towards the detection of Earthlike planets and universal life.  

Over the course of his career, Queloz has developed new astronomical equipment, observational approaches and detection algorithms. He has participated in and conducted global research programmes leading to breakthrough discoveries and the detection of hundreds of planets. He has appeared in numerous documentariesand participated in many newspaper, TV and radio interviews to promote interest for science in general and share his passion for astronomy, particularly exoplanets and life in the universe.  

Queloz is professor in astronomy at the University of Geneva and professor of physics at the University of Cambridge. He was jointly awarded the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics along with James Peebles and Michel Mayor.

More about Didier Queloz and the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics.