Late Cornell professor's Nobel Prize medal to be auctioned

An 18-karat gold Nobel Prize medal awarded to former Cornell University physicist Kenneth Wilson in 1982 is being sold at auction by his estate.

Thursday's sale will be handled by Los Angeles-based Nate D. Sanders Auctions, with a starting of $450,000. The 2.5-inch-diameter medal is in a red leather case gilt-stamped with Wilson's name. Wilson died in 2013 in Saco, Maine, at age 77.

Wilson's medal is just the 19th Nobel Prize to go to auction. Last May, Leon Lederman's Nobel Prize in physics fetched $765,000.

Wilson was a pioneer of high-energy physics and supercomputing. He won the Nobel Prize for his work in , a science that led to the founding of the National Science Foundation's five national scientific supercomputing centers.

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