Riccardo Giacconi (1931-2018) was an Italian astrophysicist who was awarded with the Nobel prize in physics back in 2002 for his important contributions to astrophysics.

Since he was an astrophysicist, he must have heard about the multiverse hypothesis. Still, I have not found a single paper or article or interview from him where he indicates his opinion (neither positive nor negative thoughts) about the possibility of the existence of multiple universes.

Therefore, does anybody know what did Mr. Giacconi thought about the multiverse hypothesis? Did he like it? Or, on the contrary, he thought it was nonsense and not worthy of any discussion or study?


1 Answer 1


I can confirm that there isn't anything on the net.

Moreover, Giacconni has written two books, one on X-Ray astronomy, first published in 1974 and although he mentions the cosmic X-Ray background which would be relevant in the inflationary hypothesis and which gave birth to the multiverse hypothesis (so a hypothesis squared, so to speak) he does not mention the multiverse - which is no surprise - as the earliest mention of multiverses in Steinhardts paper in 1982 in the context of Inflation, and in the following year by Vilenkin in a paper published in Physics Review D, called Birth of Inflationary Universes.

Nor does he mention either hypothesis in his later, more autobiographical book, The Secrets of the Hoary Deep and which was published in 2008. According to an Internet search he was not a man to shy away from controversies, which suggests that he simply didn't think that this hypothesis squared was worth his trouble, or anybody else's and that its value as a scientific idea was over-inflated (pun intended).

Moreover, it seems in this he's been joined by Steinhardt, who as mentioned above was one of the key originators of the theory and who has since then become a vocal critic of the idea.


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