Lesser-known and junior colleagues helped the great physicist to piece together his general theory of relativity, explain Michel Janssen and Jürgen Renn.
General relativity at 100
In November 1915, Albert Einstein put the finishing touches on his radical reinvention of space, time, gravity and the Universe itself. Throughout the following 100 years, experimenters have confirmed the general theory of relativity to ever-higher precision, and theorists have unravelled implications of it that even Einstein had not dreamed of, from black holes to the Big Bang. In this special collection and in a companion e-book, Nature celebrates the past triumphs of Einstein’s creation and the milestones yet to come.
An improbable rumour has started that the observatory has already made a discovery — but even if true, the signal could be a drill.
Many physicists believe that entanglement is the essence of quantum weirdness — and some now suspect that it may also be the essence of space-time geometry.
A concept developed for computer science could have a key role in fundamental physics — and point the way to a new understanding of space and time.
The left-over radiation from the Big Bang has given up what may be its last great secret about the early Universe, but astronomers are determined to mine more from this primordial prize.
Will an astronaut who falls into a black hole be crushed or burned to a crisp?
Many researchers believe that physics will not be complete until it can explain not just the behaviour of space and time, but where these entities come from.
The exotic theory of everything could shed light on the behaviour of real materials, thanks to an unexpected mathematical connection with condensed-matter physics.
Scientists will use wonky orbit to test Einstein’s theories.
Videos released just as a telescope survey suggests two black holes are due to collide in seven years' time.
The objects would bend light around them into a 'fractal' as they spiral into each other.
Physicist explored the idea of a steady-state Universe in 1931.
Thanks to theoretical physicist Kip Thorne, real science is embedded in Christopher Nolan's film Interstellar, in which explorers seek a new home for humankind. Thorne talks about what he learned from the film's unprecedented visualizations of black holes and wormholes, what it and his accompanying book can teach, and the likelihood of humans escaping the Solar System.
Graham Farmelo enjoys a 'biography' of the general theory of relativity.
News & Views
Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity has passed a rigorous test on the scale of galaxy clusters. But the test does not rule out a popular alternative model of gravity. See Letter p.567