Price, Richard

Price, Richard

Price, Richard, 1723-91, English nonconformist minister and philosopher. His philosophical importance rests on his ethical discussion, Review of the Principal Questions and Difficulties in Morals (1757), in which Price stresses the power of reason in making moral judgments, a position closely allied to that of Kant. He achieved fame with his sponsorship of the American colonists' cause in a pamphlet called Observations on the Nature of Civil Liberty, the Principles of Government, and the Justice and Policy of the War with America (1776). He also defended the French Revolution and was subsequently criticized by Edmund Burke in his Reflections on the Revolution in France. Price's writings on governmental finance were also well known.

See studies by C. B. Cone (1952) and W. D. Hudson (1970).

Richard H. Price is a leading American physicist, well known for his important work in general relativity.

Price graduated from Stuyvesant High School in 1960, and went on to earn a dual degree in physics and engineering from Cornell University in 1965. He earned his Ph.D. in 1971 from Caltech under the supervision of Kip Thorne. He has spent most of his career at the University of Utah, but in 2004 joined Center for Gravitational Wave Astronomy at the University of Texas at Brownsville.

Price is probably best known for a 1972 result now known as Price's theorem. This is usually informally stated as follows: any inhomogeneities in the spacetime geometry outside a black hole will be radiated away. (Any such inhomogeneities can be quantified as nonzero higher multipole moments.) Price's theorem explains how the no hair theorem is enforced. Price also made pioneering numerical simulations which established (nonrigorously) a precise scenario for the emission of gravitational radiation during the merger of two compact objects (such as two black holes). Subsequent work has largely confirmed the scenario which was first developed in his work. These simulations have provided a major impetus for the development of gravitational wave detectors such as LIGO.

Price is the coauthor of three well known books in general relativity.

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