George Smoot greets fifth graders.

George Smoot greets fifth graders.

American astrophysicist George Smoot ’66, PhD ’71 won $1M on the TV game show “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?” on Sept. 18. He was only the second person to win $1M on the show and the first man to do so.

Of course, this is not the first prize he’s won. Smoot was awarded a Physics Nobel Prize in 2006. He won the Nobel Prize for his work on Cosmic Background Explorer Satellite (COBE) with John C. Mather that led to the measurement “…of the black body form and anisotropy of the cosmic microwave background radiation.” This work helped cement the big-bang theory of the universe. According to the Nobel Prize committee, “the COBE-project can also be regarded as the starting point for cosmology as a precision science.”

And he even had fun winning a million dollars. Watch the episode. His final question? “What’s the location of Acadia National Park?”