Nobel Prizes and Laureates

Nobel Prizes and Laureates

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2002
Raymond Davis Jr., Masatoshi Koshiba, Riccardo Giacconi

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Riccardo Giacconi - Nobel Lecture

The Dawn of X-Ray Astronomy

Riccardo Giacconi held his Nobel Lecture December 8, 2002, at Aula Magna, Stockholm University. He was presented by Professor Mats Jonson, Chairman of the Nobel Committee for Physics. Summary: Instruments attached to rockets and satellites fired into space have explored the X-ray universe since 1950. What was once an unknown background of X-ray emission turned out to contain millions of X-ray sources, both galactic and extra-galactic. Thanks to the development of increasingly sophisticated instruments, the sensitivity to detect X-ray sources has improved 1,000 million times and the resolution has improved significantly over the last 50 years. Among the long list of observations and discoveries achieved through X-ray astronomy are binary stars and the first evidence for the existence of black holes.

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Copyright © The Nobel Foundation 2002

From Les Prix Nobel. The Nobel Prizes 2002, Editor Tore Frängsmyr, [Nobel Foundation], Stockholm, 2003


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