A look at the life of visionary physicist Professor Stephen Hawking
Mitch Harris talks with Professor Richard Easther, theoretical cosmologist at Auckland University, on the life of physicist Professor Stephen Hawking, who died earlier today at the age of 76.
Professor Hawking developed a slow-progressing from of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) that left him paralysed as he grew older, and famously communicated with a text-to-speech synthesiser through a single cheek muscle.
In a statement released on Wednesday (local time), Prof Hawking's family announced he had "died peacefully" at his Cambridge home early in the morning.
"We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today," his children Lucy, Robert and Tim wrote in a joint statement.
"He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years."
The world-renowned scientist has left an enormous legacy. His work has shaped the scientific consensus for decades, beginning by examining the singularity theorem, the theory of relativity and black holes, and formulating the theories about the universe itself.
Night Talk with Mitch Harris, 8pm - 12am Monday to Thursday on RadioLIVE, and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.