There are so many ways to cope with the Big Four-O Crisis: one might run a marathon, buy a Harley-Davidson, or start pottering with organic clay, in order to be happy.
By the time Adam Riess, whose parents escaped Nazi Germany in 1936, reached 40, he had already discovered that the expansion of the universe is accelerating – and was awarded a Nobel Prize for this discovery. Odd guy.
In order to understand what “the expansion of the universe is accelerating” even means, let us go back some 14 billion years. mose scientists assume, that the universe was formed at a moment in which a factor – be it the big bang, the singular point or God – decided to start inflating the “time-space” balloon.
In 1928 the American scientist Edwin Hubble that the distances between galaxies throughout the balloon universe, including our very own milky way, are growing constantly. Riess’ discovered that the expansion is accelerating.
Hubble struggled for recognition his entire career, however at the time, the Nobel Prize in Physics did not recognize work done in astronomy. His work was only recognized after his death. In a way, Adam Riess’ Nobel Prize not only shed new light on the mystery of the universe, but also redressed the wrongs done to Hubble.