, Volume 94, Issue 6, pp 417-429
Date: 05 Dec 2006

Wolfgang Priester: from the big bounce to the \(\Lambda\) -dominated universe

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Abstract

Wolfgang Priester (1924–2005) was one of Germany’s most versatile and quixotic astrophysicists, reinventing himself successively as a radio astronomer, space physicist and cosmologist, and making a lasting impact on each field. We focus in this personal account on his contributions to cosmology, where he will be most remembered for his association with quasars, his promotion of the idea of a nonsingular “big bounce” at the beginning of the current expansionary phase, and his recognition of the importance of dark energy (Einstein’s cosmological constant Λ) well before this became the standard paradigm in cosmology.