A SCOTTISH university has planted a cutting on its campus to celebrate its links to Albert Einstein.

Researchers from the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Glasgow planted the Holsteiner cox apple taken from a tree in Einstein’s summer home in Caputh, Germany.

The event also marks 90 years since Einstein visited Glasgow and was awarded an honorary degree by the university in recognition of his contributions to physics.

The cutting from the tree was donated by a former student of the University’s School of Chemistry, John Hancox.

Hancox, director of the social enterprise Scottish Fruit Trees, said it was part of his contribution back to the university.

He added: “There is a personal connection too, as my mum was from Berlin and in my mind, this is also a quiet memorial to her as well.

“The Holsteiner cox is a nice eating apple, and it would be nice to think that the tree might inspire the next generation of scientists in making significant advances.

“As anyone knows the story of how Isaac Newton developed his theory of gravity can tell you, apples have played a key role in the story of physics before now, and they might once again.”

The cutting was arranged by the Einstein Forum in Berlin and the James Clark Maxwell Foundation in Edinburgh and the tree was planted beside the Kelvin Building, home to the School of Physics and Astronomy.

In 2015, researchers from the university’s Institute for Gravitational Research (IGR) were part of an international collaboration that discovered the first direct evidence of gravitational waves, predicted by Einstein in 1916.

Professor Sheila Rowan, director of the institute, said Einstein’s theories laid the foundations for much of modern physics.

She added: “We’re proud that our predecessors at the University of Glasgow had the opportunity to present him with an honorary degree in recognition of his work.

“We’re delighted to be able to plant a tree from Einstein’s garden here at the university today. It’s inspiring to think that a tree from his garden will be growing on campus at the same time that our understanding of the universe grows through gravitational wave astronomy."

Glasgow scientists developed a mirror suspension at the heart of Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) which is capable of detecting very faint traces of gravitational waves as they pass through the Earth.

This most sensitive scientific equipment ever developed has suspensions that can hold 40kg mirrors completely still so lasers bounced from their surface can measure tiny displacements of gravitational waves.

The LIGO-Virgo-KAGRA network of gravitational detectors began its fourth observing run on May 24 and expects to detect signals from hundreds of astronomical events during its 18-month run.