Andrei Linde is one of the authors of the inflationary universe scenario, which is gradually becoming the standard paradigm of modern cosmology, replacing the previous versions of the big bang theory. In 1974, he pointed out that the energy density of a scalar field plays the role of the vacuum energy density (cosmological constant) in the Einstein equations. In 1976 to 1978, he demonstrated that the energy released during the cosmological phase transitions may be sufficient to heat up the universe. These observations became the basic ingredients of the inflationary scenario proposed by Alan Guth in 1981.
In 1982, Andrei suggested the new inflationary universe scenario, which resolved the problems of the original model proposed by Guth, while preserving most of its important features. In 1983, he proposed the chaotic inflationary universe scenario, which became the prototype for the new generation of inflationary models. Published in 1986, his theory of an eternal chaotic inflation suggests that our universe is one of many inflationary universes that sprout from an eternal cosmic tree. In this scenario, the universe becomes the multiverse consisting of infinitely many universes of all possible types. The model of hybrid inflation, which he developed from 1991 to 1994, became one of the most popular inflationary models in the context of supergravity and string cosmology. In 2003, together with Shamit Kachru, Renata Kallosh, and Sandip Trivedi, he developed the first mechanism of vacuum stabilization in string theory. It serves as a basis for most of the recent attempts to construct realistic models of elementary particle physics, inflationary cosmology, and the theory of dark energy based on string theory. At present, he continues his work on inflation, creation of matter in the universe, the theory of the inflationary multiverse, and the cosmological consequences of string theory.
Andrei was born in Moscow on March 2, 1948. He studied physics in the Moscow State University and was a graduate student at the Lebedev Physical Institute in Moscow. From 1972 to 1974, he developed, with David Kirzhnits, a theory of cosmological phase transitions, which was the subject of his Ph.D. In 1975, he started his work at the Lebedev Physical Institute, and in 1985 he became a professor of physics there. In 1989, he joined the Theory Division at CERN in Switzerland, and in 1990 he became a professor of physics at Stanford University.
He is the author of more than 230 papers on particle physics, phase transitions, and cosmology. He has written two books on inflationary cosmology: Inflation and Quantum Cosmology and Particle Physics and Inflationary Cosmology.
∞ 2014: Kavli Prize
∞ 2012: Fundamental Physics Prize
∞ 2006: Medal of the Institute of Astrophysics, Paris, France
∞ 2005: Robinson Prize for Cosmology, Newcastle University, UK
∞ 2004: Humboldt Research Award, Germany
∞ 2004: Peter Gruber Prize (for for the development of inflationary cosmology)
∞ 2002: Dirac medal (for the development of inflationary cosmology)
∞ 2001: Oskar Klein medal in physics
∞ 1978: Lomonosov Award of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (for the theory of the cosmological phase transitions)