Oct 3, 2006
John Mather of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and George Smoot of the University of California, Berkeley, share this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics for their discovery of the blackbody form and anisotropy of the cosmic microwave background radiation.
More on the Nobel site.
As some readers will know, Smoot allegedly let the COBE results out of the bag ahead of the official announcement and so became the name everyone associated with the discovery of the detail in the universe’s microwave background radiation revealed in the picture shown here. There were around 1500 people involved in the research project, including Mather who was coordinator. Divvying up the Nobel Prize of 10m Swedish Krona between them all would give each of them less than $1000. That’s nothing to be sneezed at, but they’d have to club together to buy at least one really decent satellite.