back to article A trio of boffins scoop the Nobel Prize in physics for the first exoplanet discovery and big bang model

Three scientists have won the Nobel Prize in physics for the discovery of how the early universe evolved after the Big Bang and finding the first exoplanet orbiting a faraway star. One half of the prize, a sweet 4.5 million Swedish krona - about $453k or £370k - goes to James Peebles, 84, a Canadian-born retired cosmology …

  1. NorthIowan

    " Doppler shift, which involves monitoring a star’s brightness levels over time"

    To clarify:

    Doppler shift, which these guys used, is using a spectrometer to look for a periodic shifting of spectral lines of the star from the planet pulling the star to and away from earth as the planet orbits it's star. Planets are really small compared to a star. So these shifts are small for even big planets. One of the not fun problems with doing this is earth's orbit adds it's own shift into that spectrometer data.

    The monitoring a star’s brightness levels over time is different. Its problems are that planets are really small compared to a star, so the brightness change is small to very small. And also you have to make sure you're not counting sun/star spots as planet transits.

    1. ianmcca

      Re: " Doppler shift, which involves monitoring a star’s brightness levels over time"

      Indeed, and it depresses me that even in The Register "journalism" can still occasionally triumph over accurate technical substance.

      1. GnuTzu Silver badge

        Re: " Doppler shift, which involves monitoring a star’s brightness levels over time"

        I sense a habit of oversimplifying. It seems they've attempted to merge two concepts into one. Oh well. I still love El Reg.

        Oh, and I found this one in the security section. I would think any security angle regarding an exoplanet would be a matter of science fiction. Perhaps it's about finding us a new planet in time to deal with the demise of this one. {Insert post-apocalyptic scenario here.}

  2. BebopWeBop Silver badge

    Missed opportunity

    From the image caption and title, you have the 1/2 and 2x1/4 the wrong way round in image splits - or have I misunderstood?

    1. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Missed opportunity

      What, like some unfunny Private Eye mis-captioning of a couple of Olsen twins? Surely 1/2 is 2*1/4?

      Meh, whatever. All is right with the world. Just watching Ash vs Evil Dead and Ash has finally reconciled with his father.

      Oh, wait, that didn't work out too well... the Oldsmobile went all Stephen King and killed him :(

    2. Glenturret Single Malt

      Re: We have signed emails

      The subheading on the article is correct but in the daily digest I receive, it says that the two lesser prizewinners "share" a quarter so that only threequarters of a Nobel prize is accounted for.

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