Stephen Hawking to travel to space

Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic

Professor Stephen Hawking says he is planning to travel into space on Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic.

The physicist and cosmologist, 75, said he had not expected to have the opportunity to experience space but that the Virgin boss had offered him a seat.

Discussing the meaning of happiness on Good Morning Britain, he said: "My three children have brought me great joy.

"And I can tell you what will make me happy, to travel in space.

"I thought no one would take me but Richard Branson has offered me a seat on Virgin Galactic, and I said yes immediately."

Professor Hawking also shared his views on US President Donald Trump during the interview.

The scientist - who previously referred to Mr Trump as a "demagogue" - said he still admires America but fears that he "may not be welcome" there any more.

"The reaction to the election of Donald Trump may have been overdone, but it represents a definite swing to a right-wing, more authoritarian approach," he said.

"Everyday life in the United States continues much the same.

"I have many friends and colleagues there, and it is still a place I like and admire in many ways.

"I would like to visit again and to talk to other scientists but I fear that I may not be welcome."

© PAA 2017 Image Credit: AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill

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