Curiosity Meets Discovery Lecture Series
A 40-year journey
In this episode we are honored to welcome Nobel Laureate Prof. Reinhard Genzel who stunned the world with his research proving that black holes do exist in the universe. Hear how he and his team spent four decades developing novel methods for measuring gas and stars, and the steps they took to obtain conclusive evidence supporting the existence of a massive 4 million solar mass object at the center of the Milky Way. Looking towards the future, Genzel and his team are now using the Galactic Center as a gigantic lab to test the theory of general relativity, while revolutionizing the technology that will enable researchers to continue to reach beyond the stars and unlock the mysteries of the universe.
Prof. Dr. Reinhard Genzel is a director and scientific member at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics. He studied physics at Bonn University, and earned his doctorate at the Max Planck Institute for Radioastronomy. Dr. Genzel worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics before becoming Associate Professor of Physics and Associate Research Astronomer, at the Space Sciences Laboratory, of University of California, Berkeley where he later became Full Professor. He joined the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in 1986, while continuing his affiliation with the University of California and pursing his work understanding the Galactic Center. In 2020, Reinhard Genzel was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics together with colleagues Roger Penrose and Andrea Ghez for their revolutionary work understanding black holes.