Stephen Hawking's last TV interview. (Source: Pear Video)
Scientist Stephen Hawking has died at the age of 76, a spokesman for his family has said, according to UK-based Sky News.
Professor Hawking's children, Lucy, Robert and Tim said in a statement: "We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today.
"He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years.
"His courage and persistence with his brilliance and humour inspired people across the world.
"He once said, 'It would not be much of a universe if it wasn't home to the people you love.'
"We will miss him forever."
The world famous physicist and cosmologist was the subject of the 2014 film The Theory Of Everything, which starred Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones.
Hawking contracted motor neurone disease in 1963 and was given two years to live but he went on to study at Cambridge and became one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists since Albert Einstein.
Factfile: Stephen Hawking
■ Born 8 January 1942 in Oxford, England
■ Earned place at Oxford University to read natural science in 1959, before studying for his PhD at Cambridge
■ By 1963, was diagnosed with motor neurone disease and given two years to live
■ Outlined his theory that black holes emit "Hawking radiation" in 1974
■ Published his book A Brief History of Time in 1988, which has sold more than 10 million copies
■ His life story was the subject of the 2014 film The Theory of Everything, starring Eddie Redmayne