Physicist Stephen Hawking is set to become the first distinguished research chair at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, a top Canadian scientific trust looking to expand its roster of brilliant scientists.
Hawking will go there to work and conduct research, but will also likely give at least one public lecture and one technical lecture each time he stays in Ontario.
The Waterloo, Ontario-based institute focuses on quantum theory and gravity, and received donations from Research in Motion co-founder Mike Lazaridis and others. Theoretical physics will remain a top priority of the Perimeter Institute, which was created in 2000.
Other areas of research include cosmology, particle physics, quantum gravity, quantum information, and superstring theory.
Hawking will conduct his first stay as PI at the facility sometime in the summer of 2009, officials said. The research facility will look for as many as 40 international scientists over the next five to 10 years willing to accept visiting chair positions.
Hawking is best known for his theories on black holes and time, and has published two books: "A Brief History of Time" and "A Briefer History of Time."
"I am honored to accept the first Distinguished Research Chair at the Perimeter Institute," Hawkins said in a statement. "The Institute's twin focus, on quantum theory and gravity, is very close to my heart and central to explaining the origin of the Universe. I look forward to building a growing partnership between PI and our Centre for Theoretical Cosmology, at Cambridge. Our research endeavor is global, and by combining forces I believe we will reap rich rewards."
Hawking will be able to remain the head of the Cambridge Center for Theoretical Cosmology, although Hawking may retire from the center sometime in 2009.