Physicist Peter Schwerdfeger has been awarded New Zealand’s most prestigious science award, the Rutherford Medal after his 20 year long study of mercury. Professor Schwerdfeger confirmed last year that mercury is liquid at room temperature because of the effect of Einstein’s theory of relativity. This means that the electrons closer to the nucleus are heavier because they are moving at speeds similar to the speed of light.
While he had his suspicions of this theory, he found it extremely difficult to convince others. He suffered many blows of confidence throughout his lengthily study project with referees claiming that he had made errors in his calculations, however he never failed to give up. Now Professor Schwerdfeger has the scientific evidence behind him highlighting, just like Rutherford, that he has amazing determination, skill and ability within the scientific field. Professor Schwerdfeger said he will be putting the $100,000 prize money towards this $105,000 mortgage.